You may remember that not long ago, a young man just a few years younger than myself posted a question regarding college photography programs. All started out well, until a few posters started telling him to just forget professional photography, etc. They distributed what I saw (in my opinion) as fundamentally incorrect, or at least extremely misleading information, and so I called them on it. Long story short, it devolved into a veritable flame war in which many unqualified personal attacks were thrown around and at the end of which I vowed a cessation of contribution to this forum. I considered the personal attacks and sheer ego displayed by certain forum members to be inappropriate and generally unacceptable, so rather than devote any more energy to fending off personal attacks, I just left. But then it hit me, just recently, that I've been involved with the LF forum in one way or another for too long to just say to-hell with it. It's a valuable resource that I believe in, and I won't be squeezed out by hostility. This purpose of this thread isn't to point fingers or to tell anyone off. In the thread that motivated me to leave, there were a lot of people being unnecessarily hostile, myself included. And I apologize for that. It just occurs to me that a lot of people here feel the need to be absolute experts a little too often and that we are all a little too ready to go to our guns when a little courtesy would do just fine. And that's what's bothering me. Ladies and gentlemen - why all the hostility? It seems like there's a lot of bad blood flowing around in the greater Photo.net community and in this forum as well, despite the fact that it's been around for a long time with what largely amounts to its own independent group of contributors, many of whom have been contributing for a good number of years. When that bad blood surfaces, it's just ugly. And not only that, it's completely unnecessary. True, there will always be rivalries and grudges in a community with a large number of people contributing, but I don't see why that means we have to engage in petty bickering and other bullshit like that when we don't quite see eye-to-eye on some issue. Sure, stand up for what you believe in when it's appropriate, but don't take to throwing insults around when there's a more civil way to go about it. So I guess I'm saying two things overall. One, I'm back and I shouldn't have left. Two (the important one), *please* can we try to be a little more courteous when we find ourselves with a point of contention? Flinging mud at one another doesn't help us learn anything, it only makes us dirty. I'll do my best to keep myself and my opinions in line and on-topic from now on. Will you?