Well, to be fair, you're not the only person that's been accused of being less than diplomatic at times.
Personally (*heh*), I don't think you're terribly rude and I've been happy to learn from your posts, as well as those of Ovid's and the others you mentioned. At times, you tend to appear to come across as a little unforgiving, but I've generally chalked that up to friendly differences of opinion, rather than the ravings of a madman.
Because I'm still learning many aspects of Perl and the comunity, I tend to presume that any disagreements I have with the quality of a post stem from a lack of understanding on my part. Similarly, I try to avoid blanket statements regarding the quality of a given solution, unless I'm absolutely certain that I can defend such an assertion. I certainly never try to infer character (or intent) from coding flaws.
As far as the personal notes go, well, I add them so people have a chance at understanding things that I'm not fully able to communicate effectively through static text. Others use different techniques. I appreciate seeing such cues and try to treat others they way I hope they'll treat me. It's a style that I've slowly adopted over the last twelve years of online support and it seems to help people understand that even if I'm technically wrong in a given assertion or theory, at least I've tried to help to the best of my ability.
I guess it's my way of demonstrating the fourth virtue you mention in your .sig or the Virtues of Community that Larry mentioned.
Sure, I get dinged--just like everyone else. However, the general trend leans toward the better side of what we both want out of a programming community devoted to Perl (with the ocassional joke or OT discussion). Put another way, every schoolyard has bullies (or wanna-be's). Ignore (or avoid) them as much as possible and focus on the good results. Also, work toward those same results. Ignore the politics and focus on the knowledge.
As far as entering the "good ol' boy's club," just keep participating in good ways. Contribute what you can, learn what you need. Try to treat suggestions as friendly advice, rather than inconsiderate flames. Also, ignore unexplained downvotes. While it hurts the reputation of your node and possibly your XP, it's useless feedback unless the downvoter has the courage to explain why they voted as they did. When you do get explanations for downvotes (I've gotten one such explanation so far), be sure to listen attentively and respond respectfully. That person took a chance and trusted that you'd receive it well. Respect that trust.
I believe that you can post something and get fair, honest, and constructively-intended feedback on it. Given the rash of personality voting that's going on, well, that feedback may take some time to manifest, but it does eventually appear. At the very least, the majority of the monks are good people. There are areas familiar to us both where that's a much rarer commodity.
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