All I want in 2013…. is more anonymous comments
Admittedly that title is a little bit deceptive. I don’t want the anonymous comments to be rude, indeed I’d much prefer if the commenters had names and faces. I’d really love to have the debates in person over a beer or three. But beggars can’t be choosers (or such).
What I’m asking for more of in 2013 is something that blogs/online journals/wine review websites/anything with a comments field really needs more of – the anonymous critical comments. Those (ideally) well written questions that are posed by people who, freed from the need to actually put a face behind their comments, feel like they can have a spray at the publisher of the post/article. Those ‘your (sic) wrong because’ type comments that can be rude, accusatory and plain wrong, yet can also be brutally, deservedly accurate.
The reason for this request is simple really. I need it. Wine writing need it. The whole point of democratising (or whatever you want to call it) wine writing is that we want to remove the boundaries that have existed in traditional media. To encourage a more honest, more critical and more circumspect approach to what constitutes a good/bad wine by forcing us wine writers to justify our opinions and acknowledge our bias. More transparency, more honesty, more often. Less wankers.
Naturally asking for more anonymous comments is like asking to be attacked by bees more often. Grammar Nazi’s and trolls live and breathe by anonymous comments, and I’m anything but the most fastidious editor. But the more I think about it the more I think that anonymous comments are what makes discussions happen.
For an example of the sort of comment I’m talking about, this accusatory little paragraph popped up a few weeks ago:
As you can see by my reply I was a little annoyed by the accusations. The more I think about the comment however, the more I realise I needed to flesh out my relationships and make my scoring more transparent. I needed that kick in the head so I could question my own potential bias and confirm whether I’ve gone too far.
Ultimately we all need a jab to the ribs on occasion, if purely to build up our defences (and fend it off next time). Bring on the jabs I say…
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G'day Andrew, and happy 2013.
Given the title I should give you an anonymous spray but I'm more interested in the 'Cracka points system' being more generous. Is the way they have their scores set up similar across retailers who do their own scoring, as opposed to those who just use Halliday? Does it make a greater difference to the sub-bronze level wines than gold medal? No agenda here, just interested in how it affects scoring.
Point creep is rightly the butt of jokes amongst enthusiasts but perhaps it will spread in time to the general public leading to the a distrust of points (although I doubt it). I have no problem with points being a way for a particular reviewer to benchmark a particular wine against other wines of the variety which that reviewer has tasted. However, some people regard it as an absolute which presents a problem.
BTW I would prefer the 20 point show judging system for obvious reasons but the 100 point system has a certain aesthetic appeal I guess.