Spoilers: How Not to be a Dick

Kit had some things spoiled for him. Now he’s annoyed.

So this article has been inspired by a Facebook post by somebody I know, who shall of course remain anonymous in this article as this is just an angry rant about it.

I like many other people watch the rather fantastic show Game of Thrones and as many of you will likely know Game of Thrones has a reputation for pulling off plot twists and the fact it’s one of the few shows where virtually no character is safe. There is death and killing everywhere, sometimes you see it coming but usually you don’t. The downside to this, as with any show with a plot twist, is it opens up the potential for spoilers, which leads me to the focus of this article.

In my experience there are a couple of general rules about spoilers:

– If something is brand new, check if everyone who may hear or see what you say has seen it.

– If they haven’t, either give them the option to leave, or save your thoughts for a point where they won’t see it or hear it.

– Basically don’t be a dick.

There are excusable circumstances where genuine mistakes are made. For example, not realising someone hasn’t seen Star Wars or anything else that’s been out or a long time.¬†One of the upsides to the growth in popularity of fantasy, comics, Sci-Fi and all things geeky is when things are put into a new, more accessible format be it superhero films or comics and books being turned into TV series. This does however, lead to those who are familiar with the original format knowing all of what is going to happen. For most people this is actually a lot of fun, you get to see your friends get to know something you already love and see their excitement grow. You get to see their shock when a favourite character dies or their excitement when a battle is fought and won and when the new format, be it movie, game or TV show doesn’t quite hold up to the original you can recommend the book, comic, original show or whatever it is and see your friends enjoy that instead.

river-spoiler-journal

Unfortunately, there’s another kind of person. The spiteful sort that enjoys ruining everyone’s fun and holding their apparent superior fan status above everyone else. This was the sort of message I saw. To paraphrase “Stop complaining about Game of Thrones spoilers, go and read the books” before proceeding to post spoiler after spoiler.

Now, saying the original is better is fine. But ruining it for everyone after?

No, dick move pal. Fuck you.

Personally, I’d love to read the books, I’d love to read many books, but there are so many out there and day to day life working and having at least some kind of social life (sitting in a room with my friends pretending to be elves or super heroes like the geeks we are…) means I only have time for so many books! Now it just so happens that HBO decided to take George R.R. Martin’s work and break it down into a very convenient hour-long weekly episodes. Now that suits me perfectly! I get to sit down and watch it with my (much) better half every week and it’s great! And saying people shouldn’t care about spoilers and then providing them? That really is having your cake and eating it. For everyone who saw this post who wanted to read the books, they’re still spoiled!

GoT-Spoilers

What it comes down to is basic etiquette, don’t be a dick and ruin things for people just discovering something that you care about. This sort of thing will happen more and more with the rise in geek culture, with Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Arrow and many other shows succeeding on TV. I’m sure we’ll see much more of this, and when it does, be the sort of person who enjoys sharing their favourite things, not the sort of asshole who will ruin them for others.

Kit