Anyone else find the term "newbies" offensive?

50 replies
Don't get me wrong. Personally I don't find the term "newbies"
offensive at all. To me it's just a neutral term, but I can't help
but wonder if it's only because I'm desensitized to it because
in IM, you always hear "newbies" that and "newbies" this.

Just the other day, one of my friends was playing a bit of guitar
(she's beginner), and another friend made a comment "that's
pretty noob", and she got totally CUT, and kicked him out of her
house!

So it kinda made me think, do people actually mind being called or
considered a "newbie", or was my friend just super sensitive?

Is it really a neutral term, or is it a bit condescending to some?
#find #newbies #offensive #term
  • Profile picture of the author NewbieImer
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    I honestly don't really think its offensive at all.

    The reason is that because people are just saying it because you are new and unexperienced though they may say it in a way that might make you feel lower then them most of the time people are just joking around. I think as long as the person who says it isn't saying it to hurt the other person then in no way is it offensive.

    Just my thoughts
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  • Profile picture of the author Allen Lewis
    People find the need to label themselves and others.

    The best examples are in the corporate world and any uniformed group. It's all a big pyramid scheme.

    There is a kind of 'ranking system' anywhere you go. That's why the Communism model doesn't work, because in reality people don't want a totally fair world. They want their efforts and expertise to be recognized.

    Allen
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  • Profile picture of the author CurtisN
    There's a difference between newbie and noob. Newbie means what you think it means, calling someone a noob is calling them an idiot.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kurt
      The only thing offensive is those that think being called a noob is offensive. This political correctness thing has really gone too far.

      Geez, it's just a nickname. We can call them rookies, which will be shortened to rooks.

      And speaking for myself, if someone is an "idiot", I'll call them an idiot, not a noob. Two totally different words with different meanings.
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    • Profile picture of the author Li Weng
      Originally Posted by CurtisN View Post

      There's a difference between newbie and noob. Newbie means what you think it means, calling someone a noob is calling them an idiot.
      That's probably the official definition of "noob", but I've
      always thought that it was just a abbrev of newbie, and
      I'd think that's what most people would believe.
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  • Profile picture of the author thatgirlJ
    When I first started online I really disliked the term. It's just so commonly used that I don't even bat an eye at it anymore

    I could see why some "new" people might not like to be called a newbie, though.
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  • Profile picture of the author ahuddy
    newbie, noob, nub is not an offensive term in IM. However in the gaming world it is meant to be offensive.
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    • Profile picture of the author IowaGal
      Originally Posted by ahuddy View Post

      newbie, noob, nub is not an offensive term in IM. However in the gaming world it is meant to be offensive.
      I had no idea! Thanks for the information - I'll keep this in mind.

      That said, I don't find the term offensive at all. I think it's become so commonplace to use it to describe people who are *new* to *insert something business related online here*.

      The only thing I don't like about it is that it sounds unprofessional. I really don't care to continue to read a sales page if the word "noob" is used.

      "Newbie" is better but if you're trying to sell me on something, that's not going to pass my radar.
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  • Profile picture of the author Buster Iversen
    As CurtisN said there is a big difference between newbie and noob.
    noob is most definitely meant to be offensive Urban Dictionary: noob
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  • Profile picture of the author thebrokenbox
    I don't think newbie is offensive at all, in fact it is just saying what they are, new people. If you're friend freaked out over being called a noob I can't imagine what would happen if you called her something worse.
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    • Profile picture of the author Max Ramocsai
      Not at all. I'm sure there are people out there who find it offensive. But then again, there are people out there who are offended by almost anything.
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      • Profile picture of the author Mavericks
        Originally Posted by HiddenCrimson View Post

        Not at all. I'm sure there are people out there who find it offensive. But then again, there are people out there who are offended by almost anything.
        I will agree with HiddenCrimson. These days people are very sensitive to anything. If you don't like something or somebody just pass by and forget about it. I was called newbie like everyone here. And I am alive and healthy.

        I don't think that this is offensive. Just imagine how this girl will react if she found an e-book "Guitar for dummies" or one product from ClickBank YahooCash4Idiots. She can only say "Give me that hammer?..."
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  • Profile picture of the author Jared Alberghini
    There have been many discussions about the term 'newbie' and all the other variations...

    The best 'Political Correct' term that I have seen that 'newbie's' would rather be called is this:

    Smart Beginner

    I know it probably won't catch on, simply because it's much quicker to simply type : newb, or noob, or newbie... etc...

    But for what it's worth, I like the term "Smart Beginner" much better than "Newbie".

    - Jared
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    • Profile picture of the author Glenn Grundberg
      Originally Posted by Jared Alberghini View Post

      There have been many discussions about the term 'newbie' and all the other variations...

      The best 'Political Correct' term that I have seen that 'newbie's' would rather be called is this:

      Smart Beginner

      I know it probably won't catch on, simply because it's much quicker to simply type : newb, or noob, or newbie... etc...

      But for what it's worth, I like the term "Smart Beginner" much better than "Newbie".

      - Jared
      Yeah, and I like the term "Smile Challenged" better than Harelip, too...

      Yeesh. That's just too freaking thin skinned for me...

      Newbie is a temporary state, and is nothing to be ashamed of... Noob is a "contraction" or "shorthand" for the same term, no matter how you personally feel about it.

      Now, if one were to couch the term in a sentence like, say:

      "You Fu*kin' Noob", then I would agree that there would be an issue of defamation.

      But used in the context of giving assistance or education, then it becomes more benign, yes?

      See, then you're trying to bring them OUT of noob-hood.

      But for now...they're N00bies.

      Let's all just help them be Not-N00bies.

      Peace,

      G
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      • Profile picture of the author Jared Alberghini
        Originally Posted by Glenn Grundberg View Post

        Yeah, and I like the term "Smile Challenged" better than Harelip, too...

        Yeesh. That's just too freaking thin skinned for me...

        Now, if one were to couch the term in a sentence like, say:

        "You Fu*kin' Noob", then I would agree that there would be an issue of defamation.

        Let's all just help them be Not-N00bies.
        LOL... still laughing at your response Glenn...

        Quit scaring the Noobs G... I was just trying to be nice so they don't pee all over the place... just trying to help with your hallway cleanup effort

        Don't worry Newbies, we are all here to help.

        - Captain Obvious
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  • Profile picture of the author Keyword King
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    • Profile picture of the author Buster Iversen
      Originally Posted by Keyword King View Post

      lol I think noob and all its colorful ilk are quite cute!
      Yes the small n00bz can be very cute and full of aggression, mind you calling them cute usually infuriates them even more. If you want an extensive list of terms used in gaming just head to any mmorpg (massive multiplayer online role playing game) forum and post your opinion on something (doesn't matter what you say you will mortally offend somebody)
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      • Profile picture of the author jcw
        Never bothered me.

        I think it matters more when it's clear the one who calls you a noob or newbie is trying to be condescending. Even then, you can always fire back that everyone starts out as new / newbie no matter what the field or area of interest is. In fact, when someone ridicules another for being new, that makes the person look pretty childish.

        However, there can be exceptions. . .

        For example, if you decide to sit down at a poker game in a casino where insults or put downs are an expected (and accepted) method to psych out an opponent, you really can't complain because you knew (or should have known) what you were getting yourself into. I gotta a kick out of watching Mike "The Mouth" Matusow ridicule or insult an obvious "newbie" who seem to get pretty rattled. I said to myself "Well what did you expect? This is real poker. You should be expecting that so it won't rattle you." Sure, the kid was new and it's perfectly acceptable to get a little upset over a bad hand, but most people know to at least expect a little ribbing.

        But, if you meet up with someone who just starting to learn a musical instrument and make fun of that person. . .that's just silly.

        Just my $0.02.
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  • Profile picture of the author IMChick
    Sticks and Stones. It just doesn't matter at all. It seems to be a descriptive term to identify someone gaining new experience in a field. That is not meant to be derogatory in nature.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kay King
      It's a silly question to even debate - newbies is easier to say/type than "new marketers" and everyone knows what it means.

      Anyone who doesn't like being called a "newbie" - can get to work and get past that "noob stage" very quickly. It's a temporary designation - or at least it should be.

      kay
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  • Profile picture of the author TheRichJerksNet
    We are all newbies in one thing or another, are we not ?? I mean nobody can know everything and not everyone is skilled at everything. There is so many different topics and levels that it would be impossible for you to learn everything involved.

    But some do try to branch out into something else and learn while they already reached their desired skill level at one thing. While they try to learn something new, are they not considered a newbie ??

    James
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    • Profile picture of the author myob
      I work with business owners and executives. The term "newbie" or "noob" is not particularly endearing in my market. Instead, I refer to them as business partners or associates.

      Somehow these terms "newbie" or "noob" are distasteful in my opinion, and I never use them. It seems to conjure a predatory mindset by IM marketers that serves only to classify them as gullible enough to fall for "get rich quick" schemes. This particular mindset is quite evident in much of the hype and worthless products targeted toward this market.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jared Alberghini
        Originally Posted by myob View Post

        I work with business owners and executives. The term "newbie" or "noob" is not particularly endearing in my market. Instead, I refer to them as business partners or associates.

        Somehow these terms "newbie" or "noob" are distasteful in my opinion, and I never use them. It seems to conjure a predatory mindset by IM marketers that serves only to classify them as gullible enough to fall for get rich quick schemes. This mindset is quite evident in much of the hype and worthless products targeted toward this market.
        Great contribution Paul.

        The association with 'newbie' to 'jackass' meaning someone who does not yet know what they are doing yet is too close for my taste.

        Did you also know that gullible isn't in the dictionary? Really... no foolins... go look it up.

        - Captain Obvious
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        • Profile picture of the author Dixiebelle
          What I would like to know is when does a person shed "newbie" status and move on to the next level. Should it be a certain income level, the number of sites owned, or how large their celebrity status or following has grown?

          What should the next level be called?

          Should there not be some means of identifying those between Newbie and guru, which by the way, is also not one of my favorite words.

          Just thinking out loud here.

          Dixie
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          • Profile picture of the author TheRichJerksNet
            Originally Posted by Dixiebelle View Post

            What I would like to know is when does a person shed "newbie" status and move on to the next level. Should it be a certain income level, the number of sites owned, or how large their celebrity status or following has grown?

            What should the next level be called?

            Should there not be some means of identifying those between Newbie and guru, which by the way, is also not one of my favorite words.

            Just thinking out loud here.

            Dixie
            Dixie,
            The term newbie is classified to ones that are new in a certain topic, niche, job, whatever you want to call it.

            I have been developing websites for over 15 years, I do not consider myself a newbie but neither do I consider myself a "guru". Yes I have built many very high end dynamic websites that sold for thousands but in my eyes using the terms "Guru" would be to specify that you are like a "God" among other lower-class individuals. I do consider myself a skilled website developer.

            Never should you judge a person by the size of their bank account or what they own. You should not judge anyone at all, but you should look at a person for who they are and what they do and have done for others.

            But like you I am just thinking out loud here..lol

            James
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        • Profile picture of the author dail
          Yes you are right, but the word gullable is!!


          Originally Posted by Jared Alberghini View Post

          Great contribution Paul.

          The association with 'newbie' to 'jackass' meaning someone who does not yet know what they are doing yet is too close for my taste.

          Did you also know that gullible isn't in the dictionary? Really... no foolins... go look it up.

          - Captain Obvious
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  • Profile picture of the author Desmon G
    Depends entirely on the intentions of the person who said it. If they're talking down or implying that they're superior I find it kind of offensive to the person who they're directing it at.
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    • Profile picture of the author freelief
      Originally Posted by Desmon G View Post

      Depends entirely on the intentions of the person who said it. If they're talking down or implying that they're superior I find it kind of offensive to the person who they're directing it at.
      My thoughts exactly. It's not the word used, it's the intent.

      My 13 y.o. throws n00b around a lot, we use it in fun. If I were to call someone else a n00b in fun and they got irked, guess I'd think they were overreacting.

      Words only have the power that we give them.
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  • Profile picture of the author polleo
    I think people do find it quite offensive, everyone has to start somewhere, and people seem to naturally focus on the fact that someone is a newbie.

    Also there seems to be this "tone" when it comes to talking about or to newbies that most people adopt.... I think that people can find this offemsive
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  • Profile picture of the author Christie Love
    I don't find the word newbie offensive at all. We all have to pay our dues at one time or another. We were all considered newbies at some point.

    The only thing that I can say for your friend is to work as hard as she can to learn everything about her interest - as fast as she can. With diligence, she'll surpass newbie status in no-time.

    I definitely wouldn't get bent out of shape and kick someone out of the house because of a label. I'd say she's super sensitive and you shouldn't worry about it. Maybe look at getting friends with thicker skin. :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
    Its the context in which it is used that matters. Like all words.

    -Garrie
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      Originally Posted by GarrieWilson View Post

      Its the context in which it is used that matters. Like all words.

      -Garrie
      that's the thing..tone of voice, body language...etc would determine whether a person could get offended. Some people can be so mean.

      To the OP, the person who said to your friend "that's pretty noob" was rude especially since he was a guest in her house. You don't treat the hostess like that. Kicking him out was harsh, but if it was me I would have reacted too, I think.
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      • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
        Like Garrie, the first thing I thought was context.

        The person in the OP didn't call the guitar player a newbie. A newbie is a noun and designates the stage of learning. It's a fact.

        When you say 'pretty noob', noob is an adjective and the person is using it to give a negative opinion.

        I find nothing wrong with the term newbie, it's all in the way you approach it.

        Li Weng's friend could have said

        "Yeah, it's really hard when you start learning to play. I couldn't hold the strings down and my fingers were sore for days."

        instead of

        "You're really crap, you loser!"

        Martin
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  • Profile picture of the author azlanhussain
    Frankly, I don't care if anyone call me with those. What important is how we react/response over it.. That will surely shows the true color of yours
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    • Profile picture of the author elevated42
      I don't and have never found it offensive overall. The only time I don't like the use of the word in the IM field is when it is used to promote an ebook or product by someone who is specifically targeting "inexperienced" people by saying that it will be easy for them.
      Certainly there are massive amounts of products that are great for brand new people, but it's thrown around a bit too much to make sales I think.


      Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author palealeisgreat
    well, did people being called "dummies" effect the sales for books put out by dummies.com?
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  • Profile picture of the author michaelmac
    I think it is crazy to think the term newbie is offensive! After all we have to start off somewhere, and i'm sure many of us have been called "amateur", "green", and "wet behind the ears", amongst others. It's almost like a rite of passage, we are each of us on a journey of discovery, both in life and IM, and many things along the way we will come across for the first time!
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  • Profile picture of the author BJ Johnson
    Not offensive, and in my opinion no one has the right not to be offended anyway.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ian Jackson
      Originally Posted by BJ Johnson View Post

      Not offensive, and in my opinion no one has the right not to be offended anyway.
      ...any more than anyone has the "right" to be offended. The Politically Correct world has caused this "offended" nonsense to become far too one-way.

      I'd love to take some of the easily offended people to my day job with me one day; where one has no choice but to develop a very thick skin - the amount of p*ss taking (aka banter in the "industrial" world), name calling etc that goes on would crucify the lesser-willed. One has to learn to laugh inwardly, and just get on with it. HR? forget it.

      Sorry(ish) if I've offended anyone...! :p
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  • Profile picture of the author Mrs S
    I'm perfectly happy with the word newbie to describe me as being a beginner. Personally though I don't like noob as it feels kinda insulting!
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  • Profile picture of the author Lambert Klein
    It depends are they putting you down or trying to help.......
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  • Profile picture of the author steven90210
    Actually "newbie" and "noob" are different.

    Sure they do mean someone who's new at something, but they are slightly different. "newbie" is a more respectable, or at the very least, dignifying term that describes someone who's a greenhorn, at whatever trade he's in. And he's willing to learn and to upgrade from "noob-ism" (or "newb-ism") to whatever is called after that.

    A "noob" is somehow a more disrespectful term. I feel that it's a term for a lazy newbie, since he will never make the effort to improve himself and stay in the ways of "noob-ism" for as long as he lives.

    Personally, if you called me a "newbie" I wouldn't mind, because I do admit I am, when it comes to IM. But if you called me a "noob" I would be very offended.

    I suppose it all comes down to how people perceive each term as it is.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Steve.
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  • Profile picture of the author gorri
    It's not offensive.
    But noob is.
    Originally Posted by Li Weng View Post

    Don't get me wrong. Personally I don't find the term "newbies"
    offensive at all. To me it's just a neutral term, but I can't help
    but wonder if it's only because I'm desensitized to it because
    in IM, you always hear "newbies" that and "newbies" this.

    Just the other day, one of my friends was playing a bit of guitar
    (she's beginner), and another friend made a comment "that's
    pretty noob", and she got totally CUT, and kicked him out of her
    house!

    So it kinda made me think, do people actually mind being called or
    considered a "newbie", or was my friend just super sensitive?

    Is it really a neutral term, or is it a bit condescending to some?
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  • Profile picture of the author raynman
    I don't find it offensive at all. It's a badge of honor to me.

    It means I am stepping out into something new, willing to take a risk on something that I don't know much of anything about. Things that seasoned pros are doing effortlessly and often is monumental tasks for those of us who are new. I spent 5 hours yesterday trying to install wordpress onto my first web site and still didn't get it done and I don't feel like I'm even close.

    Baby steps only look like baby steps to the person who isn't a baby. They may look like tiny steps but for the baby every step is monumental. Every step is history because you are doing something that you have never done before and even though you fall or stumble a lot, you are still proud of what you are accomplishing...or at least you should be.

    I am proud of what I am doing, even though it may not seem like much to many of you. I can't get to where you are if I don't struggle. Everyone has to go through it in one way or another. There is no shame in finding this stuff difficult and being new to it. The shame comes with not even trying or giving up.
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  • Profile picture of the author David_Thompson
    I'm still in the newbie phase...LOL

    For IM the term newbie just sits
    well with most...And that's why most
    have it in their product descriptions...

    --David
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  • Profile picture of the author carlos_a
    Newbie is not offensive in my book.It's just a label used in the industry.
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  • Profile picture of the author Buildingfutures
    I don't see how you can be offensive calling people what they are. If they're new, they're new. Simple simple.

    As for the word 'Noob', it is indeed intended to be highly disrespectful and a major put-down, mainly in the gaming world (constantly hearing it online) which can cause the players who are called it to either work harder to play better, or they begin team-killing and get banned.

    Either way, Haha! I'm still pretty newbish, and until I make my first $5k, I think I won't be upgraded yet.
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  • Profile picture of the author K. Rondo
    Call me a newbie or any variation of the word because that is what I am.

    Furthermore, even if I am earning an average of $1000/day, $10,000/day,
    or whatever amount; I still would aproach this business with the newbie
    mind frame.
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  • Profile picture of the author forous
    I don't find the word "newbie" offensive. In IM it just show a stage. I know people who have bosses in job world will find it offensive when they found themselves being called newbies in IM.
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