The paradox of a correct jerk

Here’s the thing.

Not that long ago I started to build awareness about my game on couple gamedev forums. But just saying “look, the game” seems not productive, so I decided to engage in various conversations, to get others to know me, and from time to time mention my game. I have participated and witnessed several arguments and a very weird cognitive conflict happened. But here’s a quick intro in what I think is relative to the case.

There is this halo effect. Yes this is the one I mention it every other post =). Basically it means that if I like (dislike) on trait of a person/thing/encounter I tend to attribute that liking (disliking) to the other traits of said person/thing/event. For example if I learn that some politician cheated his wife, I tend to think he’s a bad person in general and an awful politician in particular, which might not be the case at all.

Also, even if I know about some sort of illusion or bias – like optical or cognitive, it is still close to impossible to see the real thing, not the illusion. Now, I can sometimes detect the halo effect, but I cannot control my feelings.

So, what’s the conflict I’m talking about? It is not uncommon to see 2 people engaged in an argument. And sometimes person A says something I completely disagree with, but he does that in a polite manner which makes me respect him. Person B on the other hand says something I wholeheartedly believe in but he does that in a disrespectful manner.

If I knew nothing about the halo effect I might not think about it, my feelings would instinctively figure out whom I disliked more and told me whom to support and I’d be writing some stuff I might not actually believe in (it’s a speculation by the way).

But here’s what happens in my mind – I really do want to support B in a conversation. But his manners make me wanna punch him, so (probably) as a way to punish him I feel inclined to support party A. But I disagree with party A and I do not want to support him. I do try to remain objective, but knowing just a bit about brain quirks makes me question the existence of objectivity. Anyway, I try to remain calm and polite, not to pick sides, base my arguments on proven data and say what I DO think. But that annoying feeling bugs me like hell, once detected I cannot shake it off, as it buzzzzzzzzzzzes in my brain.

Of course, I could give up forums, which is not actually an option – I need to promote my game (and myself ^__^) and there is no one to do it for me.

Anyway, what’s your take on this matter? Have it ever happened to you?

Let me know here, in comments, or via twitter @ArseniyShved (yep, I hope you start/keep on following me).

‘kay, bye! =)