When Kevin Smith announced that he was going to be self distributing his movie Red State rather than using the traditional studio system, it generated quite a bit of news coverage. As a listener to Smith’s Smodcast network of podcast shows I read some of those news stories. Some were very critical of his decision, others were calling it revolutionary. What interested me, however, were the Comments section that followed the news articles.
The greatest strength and biggest weakness of the internet is giving everyone a stage to voice their opinions (Smith even poked fun at this in Jay & Silent Bob Strikes Back). A good 30-50% of user comments had nothing to do with the content and were just insulting Kevin Smith, either his movies or him personally. Hack, bad filmmaker, fat, deranged, has-been, unhinged and much worse were said.