Top 10 Most Interesting Flame Wars


the internet makes one wonder if the human race was always so opinionated or if the freedom and anonymity that the web provides has turned it into one. whatever be the case, the one thing that we can say for sure is that the internet is an excellent breeding ground for verbal volleys. below we discuss 10 such cyber wars which are hilarious, classic, and simply interesting.

1. linux v/s minix

perhaps every computer science major has heard of andrew s. tanenbaum (creator of minix, and a computer science professor who is an author of some of the most sought after textbooks on operating systems), and linus torvalds (creator of linux). when two people, worth their salt argument over monolithic and microkernels, using tongue in cheek remarks, then what you get is a long, interesting, amusing, and not to mention, a heated flame war.

2. funeral raid

guild members and friends of a world of war player decided to host a virtual funeral for her in an online game when she died of a stroke.  the game was hosted in a contested area on a pvp server, so quite frankly it wasn’t a surprise that the event was crashed by alliance guild serenity now who began to attack the mourners. since then, whenever this event is discussed on any online forum or post, it attracts a swarm of comments which condemn the crassness of serenity now, but also do not fail to mention how the hosts of the event were somewhat foolish to have the game hosted on a pvp server.

3. cat problem

an anonymous user, who went by the moniker – “moby”, had a rather complicated situation in front of him, the solution of which he decided who seek on the usenet group – alt.tasteless. his dilemma was that his two pet cats, whom he loved dearly, were giving him quite a tough time and keeping him from enjoying his life with his “potential girlfriend”. his call for advice, however, resulted in a long chain of comments, which soon resulted into a crazy flame war.

4. bidding adieu to windows phone

when an author (ben stegner) who writes for a certain site, decided to post an article explaining why the tech site had decided to stop covering posts on windows phone, all broke loose. the online volley of oaths, which got wilder (and even funnier, if you ask me) with each comment, was a crystal clear proof of the readers’ indignation. of course, as in most flame wars the supporters for the decision were just as wild as the opposers were.

5. war over a capital ‘i’ in a star trek film

grammar nazis are probably the scariest people online because, quite frankly who else would be more provoked by incorrect (or correct) capitalization of the letter ‘i’ in the kit ;)le of the movie – ‘star trek into darkness’ (or ‘star trek into darkness’, whatever the case be). this 40000 words long argument, which started on wikipedia, had purists fight madly with each other for, get this, 2 months. that’s longer than the duration for which most battles have been fought for.

6. the gender of millennium falcon in star wars

yet another example of how easily grammar purists can be tempted to enter the combat rings to express their rage over seemingly trifle matters. in this case, a wikipedia author used the pronounce ‘it’ to refer to han solo’s ship, the millennium falcon, and that alone ignited a furious battle amongst the editors and fans regarding what the correct pronoun should be. such morbid obsession with the gender of a fictional ship can only be seen on the web.

7. flame war over fonts

how absurd do you think it is for people to discuss the vitality or lack thereof of a single font? i say, very. the font under discussion in this particular flame war is courier typeface. visit the original post if you wish to read a rather long and even funny exchange of opinions.

8. india-pak cyber war

discussion of india-pak political relationship guarantees a war, whenever and wherever it is discussed is. in this particular instance, a cyber war exploded within minutes of mark zuckerburg posting a map which didn’t show kashmir crowning the head of india, to promote his internet.org campaign. this, of course, is a touchy subject and we all know that whenever these two nations get into a face-off of any kind, there’s always an aggressive exchange of foul words, which show a rather creative use of words like flatulence, maggots, jerks, and what-not.

 9. is 0.9999 = 1?

if you have the nerves to challenge a math nerd do comment on whether 0.9999 = 1, and what the correct mathematical representation should be. a 1000+ reply thread, full of humorous comments, and “intelli-sults” honors this argument.

10. the great flame war of 1999

this flame war that began in 1999 on the usenet newsgroup, still has the potential to stir up gamers around the globe. the debates revolve around a computer game, battlecruiser 3000 ad, and the creator of the game, derek smart, has himself been an active belligerent in the war. the proponents of derek smart say that the game was a masterpiece which is precisely why its creator has been subjected to slanderous and jealous remarks and threats, gainsayers, however, argue that the game was buggy, and derek wasn’t as smart as his surname would suggest.

Dinika Saxena

Incurable communicator. Award-winning introvert. Certified tv enthusiast. Reader. Creator.

You Might Like