Dealing with abusive Emails…

March 27, 2008

This is just one of these days…

I contacted an architect today by telephone in order to get some answer on my inquiry that I had sent to him quite a while ago. Well – the answer was not quite what I expected because instead of telling me in two words that he had no interest in my work he wrote me a rather long answer. The content was something like

“I am an art collector myself and am convinced to own not only an expert knowledge but also a healthy judgement about what “good Art” is.

I demand from you that you no longer pester me with your statements. They give me true physical pain.

Thank you in advance and please don’t loose your hope…”

Somehow in German language this sounded much more sarcastic than I can express it in English.

First I was quite shocked because I really do neither know that guy nor did I “pester” him. I only wrote one short email weeks ago and never received a reply. Following up by telephone he asked me to re-send that email what I did.

I really don’t know what kind of problem this guy had but a reaction like that I consider over the top. Meant as an offense I simply refused to accept it as that although it took me some hard moments to breathe deeply and continue with my work.

My point here is that this guy is not only way over the top – I wonder how he handles his own customers – he is also walking a very thin line. He can never know what kind of connections I have – today there are plenty of means to ruin someone’s career through the Internet. Also I could have been a potential customer in the future or I could know someone who is going to have a deal with this guy. Not very wise to react like that. There are other means to pass information to the media – he is one who likes to be mentioned in magazines – not the best basis for getting good publicity.

I know – every artist knows that – that my work does not please anyone and everybody. This would be quite unrealistic to expect. I do not work for someone else’s liking – I work for my own “liking”. If someone else likes what I am doing – this would just be the icing but not a prerequisition first place.

I am amazed that apparently many people were wrong to consider my work worthwhile to be exhibited as well as featured in many publications. Hmmm…strange isn’t it?

How do you deal with “reactions” such as this? I decided to completely ignore this person who obviously has some personal problems or a difficult time himself. Despite this there is still no reason for insulting another completely unknown person.

Artists often have to deal with rejections – that’s part of the job. After some time you learn to not take this personally and most people are nice and polite enough to express their rejection in a manner that can be accepted easily. Insulting someone is yet a completely different thing. It may have deep impact on a person’s self-confidence and courage. The offender is the one who needs correction and education. It is primitive behaviour and from the human point of view simply disgusting to try to hurt someone else’s feelings by intent. This may be an issue that can be dealt with differently on a personal plain but in “business” life this is absolutely unacceptable and can cause a whole lot of very negative consequences which will end up in regret. Always. In one way or another.

Now back to work.

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