I read the comments.
I didn’t mean to, it just… sort of happened.
Dr. Paul Wood posted an article on the voracity of single length golf clubs. So naturally, I was curious about a few points that he made and went looking for some clarification. In the comments. Oh, my! How the internet has grown dumb since the last time I’ve interneted. Generally, I have no problem with questioning someone’s opinions or findings if it is a field with which I am familiar. That’s the scientific process after all. It’s also the American way, and who am I to tell someone not to question things? But this, this was different. This is a man with a Doctorate in Physics. A man who creates golf clubs from nothing more than maths, computers, and some Asians. This man was writing an article about testing he had done personally on the subject at hand, and reporting his findings.
The internet wasn’t amused.
Good thing no less than two dozen champions of the truth were on hand to set the matter straight. One man assumed that Dr. Wood might not have heard of the most popular golf nutter of them all, Tom Wishon, and proceeded to lecture Dr. Wood in roughly three thousand words about how he was the God of all things golf club. To say anything opposing Mr. Wishon was nothing short of high treason and instantly rendered Dr. Wood’s credibility moot. Or mute, as one commenter put it. He even eluded that the only reason such blasphemy could be spoken was to sell equipment, as if ol’ Tom wasn’t out to make a dollar peddling his wares. This man’s honest belief, is that Tom Wishon only sells equipment (that he knows won’t work as well) out of a sense of altruism.
The worst part of the comments, however, was not the nonsensical gobbledygook, no. It was the supporters of the position taken by Dr. Wood. Rather than come to the aid of Science and reason, they simply responded with “Nice article.” What kind of spineless retort is that?!?! If ever an example of the Dunning-Kruger effect were needed in order to understand the Dunning-Kruger effect, this was it! The uneducated muppets blathering on about swing plane and zero loss of distance, and those who understood the article sitting in the corner staring a bit too intently at the floor. My solution to the “debate”, was simply an offer to build every supporter of single length clubs a set of sticks and play them for money. I then explained that they would enjoy the game even less, and ruin it for everyone else along the way.
The internet wasn’t amused.
What seemed to be the most objectionable part of the article was that Dr. Wood claimed that the only type of player who might benefit was one who possessed massive club head speed. Or a beginner who would only need a few clubs to get the job done. The internet did not like this at all. “But wait!” They decried. The actual type of player that would benefit the most from single length clubs was the exact type of player they were. Obviously. Or to put it another way; “I want it, so it must be so.” I guess a healthy bit of confirmation bias can’t really hurt anything. Right? It seems to work just fine in politics, sports, and everyone’s mothers cooking. Why not the internet? This post, of course, is nothing more than a steaming heap of nonsense, pleading desperately with my reader to confirm my bias on this subject.
I suspect, she won’t be amused.