Snark Attack: Navigating the Intrepid Waters of Social Media

By Tim Dominick

Found on the pages of a mythical coffee forum:

Coffeeroaster1: Hey everyone, I’m developing a new espresso blend and need some input on whether or not pre-blending is worthwhile or if I should roast the components individually?

Helpfulpeer#1:  There are pros and cons to both, could you elaborate on the coffees you are using? Things like bean density and processing styles can play a big role in which blending method will work best for you new blend.

Coffeeroaster1: I’m considering a natural Ethiopian Sidamo, Washed Bolivian, Washed Rwanda and pulped natural Brazil. I also have a really nice robusta that brings in great crema.

Helpfulpeer#1: I’d try the washed coffees together and you might be able to get the pulped natural and natural to work, but it might be better to do them separately. The Robusta is probably best roasted solo.

Snarkyroaster: Natural coffees suck, why would you even consider using them in a blend? I can’t believe people are still drinking that crap. Robusta? Jeeze, sounds like Coffeeroaster1 is trying to save a few bucks

Coffeeroaster1: Come on, Snarky, haven’t you tried XYZ natural? It got a 97 from coffee review and there are a laundry list of reasons why this processing style is legit. As for the Robusta, ask around there are some well-known roasters who use modest amounts in their espresso blends.

Snarkyroaster: Dude, naturals are for lame roasters who probably haven’t tasted a good coffee and Robusta is always crap and no self-respecting roaster would ever touch it.

See how quickly an online conversation can be derailed? All it takes is one negative, non-helpful coffee creature to turn an interesting, thoughtful conversation into an online version of poo-slinging that quickly deteriorates into a snark-infested feeding frenzy.

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