This is something I have quite a strong opinion about.
I’m sure you’ve all experienced the most irritating experience of being spoiled. For me, the worst case was when I fell in love with the first Matrix movie and spoke about it all the time. I used to rave about Trinity (my favourite character) and I was discussing with my friend how much I loved her. That’s when my friend chose to reveal some pretty sad information and spoil not only the second movie for me, but the third as well. I was gutted.
It’s even worse when it comes to books. You dedicated much more time to a book than to a movie. I don’t know about you, but when I’ve been reading a book and have spent hours upon hours becoming completely and utterly besotted by it, it really annoys me when I see something on twitter, or a book review on YouTube that doesn’t warn you that there will be a spoiler, or when a friend casually mentions something that brings everything crashing down around you. Spoilers are the bane of my life.
Obviously, I understand it’s bound to happen. If you go looking for information on the book, for example on Goodreads or YouTube, Twitter etc. you are bound to come across the occasional spoiler. Secrets about books can not be kept forever and people shouldn’t expect them to. If I look up a review on YouTube and it turns out that I get spoiled and I knew there was a chance, do I have any right to blame anyone for that? Shouldn’t I just accept that it’s my own fault and move on?
That being said, it is pretty crappy when you encounter a spoiler. I know there are many people who outwardly seek the spoilers so they know what they should expect. You get people who read the last few pages when only about 10 pages in (I am guilty of this in very extreme cases). I personally prefer not to be spoiled where books are concerned, unless there is an extremely suspenseful cliff hanger ending to a book and I have to wait until I can get a hold of the sequel.
However, the reason I read isn’t to share it with everyone else. Sure, I like to do reviews and discuss the book once I’m done, but while I’m reading it it is my experience. It’s my world to discover, it is a personal play being played out for me in my head and nobody should be able to take the experience away from me by spoiling key parts in the book.
This leads me to discuss what types of spoiling are okay and what aren’t. Like I say above, spoilers can’t be kept secret forever. If you’re reading a book a year after everyone else and you get spoiled while scrolling through your twitter, that’s nobody’s fault. People have every right to discuss a reading experience. However, the spoiling situations I detest are like the one I experienced with the Matrix. I didn’t ask what happened in the movie, my friend knew I hadn’t seen the 2nd and 3rd Matrix movies and was looking forward to seeing them and she deliberately still spoiled me. It is these situations I hate. If you are spoiled accidentally online because you weren’t careful in avoiding areas where spoilers may be, that’s different. But when someone actually goes out of there way to spoil you, it is pretty irritating.
Personally, if I am reading a book and don’t want to be spoiled, I avoid all book reviews that don’t say they are spoiler free, I avoid searching tweets about them on twitter or looking on Goodreads (however I still look up the general ratings) and I avoid the last few pages!
I guess when it comes down to it -apart from the Matrix situations- we are the ones who have to stop the spoiling. The ball is in our court and for the most part, spoiling is just something you need to avoid. If you avoid it wholeheartedly and still end up getting spoiled, that’s when you have the right to absolutely loopy.
Leave comments about your opinion!