Well hello there! Welcome to the first entry of my 'How to Win the Internet' series. In this series I'll be teaching the reader --you-- how to hold your own in an argument and to stop yourself from being exposed to the lower echelon of internet tomfoolery. Now, you may be thinking to yourself; "Ha, I don't need this Professor Irishman, I just made someone ragequit the other day! I'm fine at arguing my point." Well Imaginary person, how about taking a step back and thinking to yourself why they raged. Was it because you thoroughly explained your side of the argument and backed up your point with facts and reliable sources? Or, did you just use petty sarcasm and repetition to make your opposition want to beat their head continuously into a brick wall rather than continue arguing their point? 9 times out of 10, if you made someone ragequit, you succeeded in attempting the latter of those two methods of internet discussion.
Now that you've made such a revelation there's no need to feel bad, dwelling on the past won't help you prepare for the future! To prepare for said future you need knowledge, and who better to teach you such knowledge than some random guy calling himself a Professor on the internet? Plenty of people! But, you're stuck with me, so let's make the best of our time shall we?
This series will gloss over many subjects and the title of each entry will always begin with 'How to win the Internet', followed by a hyphen, and then ended with that days topic. Today's topic is 'Introductions' because that's exactly what I'm doing, introducing myself to you. Trying to build a rapport to your audience through words on a screen is hard, so giving an introduction that is properly fitted to the size of the total ensemble is key to trying to build that rapport. Oh- did he just sneak in the first lesson into the Intro? Indeed he did. Introductions are key to any sort of internet discussion, whether it be an argumentative one or not. Taking the time to introduce yourself and ask someone how they're doing goes a long way towards starting a nice friendly discussion with the one you're trying to communicate with. Just starting off with your topic is a bad idea in the long run. Some people like things short and sweet, but others might get offended if you just dive into ripping their idea apart or begin requesting something from them. People that like things short and sweet can still be accommodated for, all you need to do is put in a happy little introduction that's short and sweet separated from your main body by a blank line. If they wish to skip over it, that's their business, but for the people who like to be acknowledged and given greetings to it will go along way towards building the foundation of a mutually respective relationship.
Introductions aren't that hard, it's just putting words on paper, You let it flow out naturally as if you were to have a conversation with the person. You introduce yourself first as common manners dictate, then you ask how they're doing, and finally you top it off with a closing sentence to your introduction that tells the tale of what they're about to read. If this person you know is someone who likes short and sweet introductions, just plop down a nice little letter intro. "Dear blank,". Short, sweet, and just that you took the time to put in that little extra formality and effort might just be the difference between helping and hurting. Now, of course the intro isn't everything. Even if I give the most polite and fanciful introduction in the world if the request is ridiculous or the main body is rude and unbecoming the whole thing goes to wast. The Introduction isn't everything nor should it be, however, it is a nice way to start off anything you do. Most people won't be expecting your forthcoming kindness which gives you an edge in any confrontational setting, especially if a judge or another third party may look upon the record of your conversation in the future.
Anyway, now that I've gotten my introduction and my mini-lecture out of the way, I think I'll take the rest of this space to lay out what the plans for future entries are, as I don't wish to shove everything into one big post. Not only do I think people are against reading giant walls of text, I also have a schedule I'd like to keep to and writing out everything at once would surely not help. So:
Part 1 - Introductions
Part 2 - Logical Fallacies and You
Part 3 - Presenting Your Argument/Request
Part 4 - How to Counterpoint & Rebuttal
Part 5 - Closing Appreciations/Dealing with Rejection
That's basically the plan for this series. That is a rough draft of a plan, so it is subject to change, however I believe we won't be deviating from the course too much as this is all pretty straightforward. I hope you all will join me next time when we go over 'Logical Fallacies and You'.
Thank you, and until next time.