I tried something for the first time…I made two major posting to the SET section of the chat room in response to recurring questions about the relative merits of output transformers and directly heated triode tubes. Reading the responses to these questions I thought they deserved a more serious answer…because the answer is so complex. The question of which are the best 300B, or best SET output transformer, is a very complicated question, and deserves a very serious answer. All Hell broke loose…yet..

There are many benefits in participating in this web site, In spite of the undisciplined and hysterical response of a small group I would encourage you to spend time pushing the majority of participants for the most demanding answers to your complex questions.

Take time and surf around its various sections. These are great places to get information and share wisdom.

You will also notice subsection devoted to specific manufacturers, which is a very powerful tool for maximizing customer satisfaction and discussing real world experience with products…before you buy.

After an hour of surfing around these chat room and web sites you will understand their value in the serious investigation of the audio arts…and why magazines can never deal with the issues they explore.

That is the good news.

And now for the polarity:

The question is why don’t more professionals participate in these chat rooms. We are now going to deal with the dark side of the audio arts…which is present in every male tribal activity. It is true for every sport, It is true for politics.

Obviously my posting aggravated a small, but articulate and tyranical group, who were intimidated by my rigorous test procedure, and my suggestion for an optimal testing procedure.

To avoid dealing with the controversial issues I was attacked personally. Please check the cartoon below by "mobile homeless". The tyranny of the few directed the dialogue to the lowest denominator possible.

Now I will answer my own question: The reason that more audio professionals don’t participate in this audio chat room is because it has also become the playpens for three archetype you will recognize.

AUDIO MOBY DICK: A large hulking beast whose mind is surrounded by blubber, who likes to hide in the depths for protection, and every now and then emerges on the surface to exercise his blow hole, and then quickly submerges for protection. A Moby Dick never adds anything of substance to an audio chat room, and does nothing more than blow wind, which often takes the form of personal attacks on those he disagrees with. He doesn’t have any experience with audio circuits so all he can do is blow wind, and make primitive noises. No doubt about it, Moby Dicks are passionate, but they neither have the intelligence or intellectual skills to deal with the complexities of the audio arts, When challenged, and asked to discuss the nitty gritty facts of their opinions, or to offer original insights, Moby Dick’s submerge.

AUDIO BEAVIS AND BUTTHEAD: We all love these real American heroes because they are so…so typical of the American male mind, and there are plenty of audio Beavis and Buttheads cruising chat rooms, farting, belching, scratching their butts, popping their zits, and making dirty jokes…without the ability to make a substantial contribution to the discussions because their pea size brain can’t deal with paradox and complexity. The best way to deal with these twins is just ask them to give you the nitty gritty details of their thoughts on audio circuits or design. There are none. This will get them very angry, and they will insult you once again. A good defensive response to them "Double no backsies", or "Your mother wears Army boots", or "Stick and stones will hurt my bones, but words will never harm me". The good news is the twins only participate in chat rooms when there is nothing to watch on MTV.

PMS VAMPIRES: We know this archetype, because we have all been victim of PMS attacks. These attacks are unexpected, uncontrolled, hysterical; irrational…and how can we blame a woman who is under the influence of the dreaded PMS? We can’t. All that we can do is feel compassion, though we want to club, slug or shoot her. Now it can be told. Many men who participate in audio chat rooms are a rare breed. PMS Vampires. They exhibit all of the characteristics of women suffering with PMS, and more. He wants blood, because without it he dies. You may have met this man in business. I met many of this type of man in the fashion business. Do not try to drive a silver stake through his heart.

It is because these three archetypes do their best to lower the discussions to their level of intellectual comfort, which is personal attacks on the chat room participants, serious audio savant refuse to participate in the discussions. They feel they don’t want to waste their time with the slimy audio low road, and they are right.

Many assert that the moderators of these chat rooms, who have responsibility for maintaining the decorum, should demand a higher standards for the dialogue because then the discussions would be more valuable for the public because more professionals would participate.

I disagree. I think Audio Moby Dicks, Audio Beavis and Buttheads, and PMS Vampires make a valuable contribution to our tribe, because they remind us about the reality of the American audio arts…which makes us very uncomfortable. It will take decades for Americans to catch up with our Japanese bros’ in terms of taking the audio arts seriously.

Who said that passion and intelligence necessarily co-exists? History is proof of the opposite. It is rare that passion, intelligence, creativity and curiosity co-exist in large groups of men which is why the audio arts are so charismatic….we are blessed with an abundance, which counter balances the plentitude of audio bottom feeders.

I remind you of the ancient wisdom: Evil and ignorance can never be eradicated, because it is the human condition, we must accept its presence in all activities.

Cartoon by Kelly Holsten:

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