When you post on Twitter, you are publishing an article. It's something that a lot of people seem unaware of, but legally, practically, ethically, that is exactly what you are doing, just as if you were publishing a 140 character newspaper. You can be sued for libel, in some territories you can be liable for hate crimes and if someone who you write about notices and replies to you, it's probably not something you can be too shocked about. Twitter can be seen as an exercise in extrovertism by introverts, some of whom can be surprised, even with thousands of followers, that the subject of their tweets has noticed what they are saying and wants to reply.
Of course, what people say in those replies can be an entirely different matter.
The author of the Eschergirls tumblr, previously featured on Bleeding Cool after they criticised the work of Randy Queen when he tried to get their site taken down, tweets under the name of @ami_angelwings. And recently she tweeted about Dan Slott's Spider-Man comics. Or, rather, what she had read about them on Wikipedia.
Dan Slott, author of Superior Spider-Man is known to actively search for comments online about his work. He's hardly alone in that, I;ve been known to do it myself. He also responds to it, again, hardly unique. And some people are surprised by that, but it's not exactly Dog Bites Man. Though this response was probably an unusual one. I believe technically that's called playing the person, not the ball. And it did give the impression that Dan Slott was researching the life history of those who criticised his work, even for spurious reasons. Now, it's probably not true, it's playing off Ami's comments about just reading wiki summations rather than the comments themselves. But you might see how someone like Ami and others might be a bit freaked out by this. Dan Slott tried to get back to that point. Before choosing to apologise and delete those tweets.
Though Ami wasn't convinced.
Well, as someone who has been at the hands of said followers, I know how it can go down. And yes, if you criticise something or someone's work online, it's always wise to consider that they might read it and respond. It's not something on a private network, it is as public as it gets.
But those who do respond to such criticism, maybe it's best not suggest that you are researching the intimate details of that person's life… just to make a point.
Fanboy Rampage was a blog by Graeme McMillan dedicated to the funniest, most ludicrous and most inappropriate comic book back-and-forths online. McMillan has moved on now, becoming a proper journalist for the likes of The Hollywood Reporter and Time Magazine but he gave permission to Bleeding Cool to revive his great creation. Feel free to contribute your own spots of online excess.