This is Critical

There was a Twitter thread I came across today in which the OP posted two pictures of a friend of his holding hands with his significant other while walking on the beach. The first picture was littered with strangers filling the shoreline, and the second was OP’s edited version where he Photoshopped out all of the strange beachgoers. I am by no means a graphic design/ Photoshop expert, but I did take a class in high school, and if I nothing else, I remember the common transgressions. There’s a special brush (I don’t remember what it’s called) but you use it to “paint” over an area, using a different part of the same image. Using this brush you can easily paint over and hide unwanted or out-of-place parts of an image almost seamlessly. BUT if you’re not careful, you can create a very obvious repeating pattern in the edited version. And OP did just that, and if an amateur like me noticed it you can bet more savvy members of the Twitterverse did as well. However, he seemed quite proud of his work, as he has a right to be.

The comments pretty much all positive. But going a little ways down, one guy zoomed-in and circled some of the more “sloppy” parts. His comment wasn’t mean, he just said to be careful. And oh boy, were people upset at this dude.

Why though? He wasn’t being particularly mean or snarky, he was just giving some feedback (albeit unsolicited). Ok, I kinda get the who offended-on-another’s-behalf thing; people are empathizing. It can suck to hear criticism, even if it is delivered with good intentions, especially on something you are proud of and worked hard on. But feedback is the basis of improvement. And the thing is OP was very gracious about the feedback. He acknowledged his room for improvement and even thanked the “nitpicker” (not that it was necessarily necessary).

On the internet it can be easy to fall into the, pardon my language, “circle-jerk.” Someone does something cute or sweet, you say cute and sweet things. And I swear to God if you say anything else you are a fucking asshole shit.

I understand that sometimes, things should be left alone, and there’s a time and place for everything. And, sure maybe we should, all just keep out mouth shut, and let people be happy. But if nobody says something, how will they know? To me that’s what’s awesome about the internet. It allows people to connect and interact. How we connect and how we interact is completely up to us. Why not make it productive?

I also feel like this means I gotta put my money where my mouth is, so consider this an open invitation to, if you feel so inspired, criticize me. Personally, professionally, academically, philosophically, whatever. My inbox is open. Right now in my head I’m thinking there’s a lot to fix, but if I don’t get any feedback I’m just going to assume that I’m perfect in everyway.

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