A popular thing on the internet is to hate. If there is something to love out there, ten times stronger is the hate towards something. A classic example: the star wars prequels and the special editions of the original three star wars movies. People hate Jar Jar Binks, hate that whiny Anakin Skywalker, hate that Han did not shoot first in the special edition of the 1977 classic, but mostly they hate George Lucas, saying he “ruined” the franchise. The hate is such a well known part of the mythos surrounding the six Star Wars movies that it has become a given fact that anyone on TV will gush about the about the original three but put down the three prequels.
Maybe it is easier to find something to criticize than to find something to like. The Nostalgia Critic, A.K.A The Guy with Glasses, in between reviewing movies that actually have some redeeming value, will pick the most unbelievably awful movies to criticize just so he can point out how awful they really are. He says it in the most sarcastic way that is admittedly funny, but he still harp on the movie like it was the most awful thing to review in the whole world. It’s almost as if he picked it just to say how much he hated it. The most recent example is the low-grade sequel, A Christmas Story 2. Obviously made just to tie in to the hype around the original, most of the time sequels like that one are ignored for good reason. But instead The Nostalgia Critic sarcastically harps on it for over twenty minutes in a review video. He also made similar videos for the Lorax and the Princess Diaries 2. He also did a whole series made four Matrix videos for the Matrix movie series, and only really liked certain shorts in the Animatrix spin off series.
Another place that is a free-for-all of hate are the comments anywhere where the public is given free reign. People will criticize every single little thing, to the point that some celebrities will ban comments all together. PewDiePie, the most subscribed YouTuber, did a video telling his fans why he disabled comments for his YouTube videos. The comments are swirling in YouTube with hatred for something about the video or the people in the videos, many with offensive language. It is not a nice place, and I do not recommend checking out most comments with most YouTube channels, with the possible exception of PBS Idea Channel.
So is it wrong to hate something and focus on the things you don’t like? Well, it technically is not focusing on positive things but negative things about a work. It is saying, “look at this, it stinks! We hate it! The writing, the acting, the directing, all stupid/idiotic/boring, etc, etc, etc.” And while that is all well and good, and I do think fair reviews should focus on both the good and the bad of a work, to go out your way to hate brings so much more negativity into the room. Many comments, that actually like the work, which are responses to the first hateful comments, are filled with hate themselves. The first hateful comment breeds more hateful comments directed back at the commenter. While it is not easy, it would be far better to not respond to hate with hate, but to ignore the hate and write a positive comment. To focus on the good works out there, to find the good things to recommend. We need to build each other up in life, and maybe that even includes the movies reviewed and comments on YouTube videos. Then we may become better and more positive people because of that decision, and we will feel better about the people around us as well.