Re: Reviews by Johan Van Veen
Posted by Paul Serotsky on January 1, 2010, 10:01 am, in reply to "Re: Reviews by Johan Van Veen"
The vast majority of complaints about adverse reviews being hostile, ill-informed, unjustified (or unjustifiable), impolite, or simply contrary to the majority of other reviews, do seem to come from people with vested interests - friends, relatives or supporters of the artists, or even from the artists themselves (rarely, if ever, do they complain about favourable reviews being too amicable, well-informed, justified (or justifiable), or simply too concurrent with the majority of other reviews!). |
In the glaring light of a huge pile of accolades, any contrary opinion is bound to seem blacker than it really is - and proportionately more "offensive" to the consequently-sensitised supporter. Mind you, as has recently been highlighted elsewhere, glowing accolades posted on artists' websites sometimes - perhaps even "often" - misrepresent their authors' true overall opinions.
All this probably seems obvious. However, it's perhaps less obvious that complaining about a review is in effect doing a "review of the review". I'm not suggesting that there's anything untoward in this, but supporters need to be aware that they are therefore bound by any rules they might impose on the subjects of their complaints. Unfortunately, this would obviate denial of a reviewer's right to express an adverse opinion, because the denial itself would come under the same heading.
Was it Churchill who said, "I may not agree with his opinion, but I will defend to the death his right to hold it," or something very similar? At rock bottom, opinions are a bit like clocks - clocks all tell you what they think is the time, but nobody knows which is "right" (because there is no such thing as "the" time). So, all an artist can do is look at all the comments, work out some sort of "batting average" and, depending on the outcome, either rest content or live with it.