The Countess: The Secret Cause Of Flame Wars
I know that one of the causes of flame wars is misunderstanding someone's intentions in writing. It's very hard to ascertain someone's tone in writing on blogs, on message boards, and in e-mail. However, Wired reports that misunderstanding tone is a big cause of flame wars. The article focuses on e-mail, but I can see misunderstanding tone being behind many flame wars in other public places on the Internet, including blogs.