One thing I like about such sites as the Absolute Write Water Cooler forum is that they have a respect for all writers, be it freelancers, content, self published, bestsellers, or otherwise. But there are writers out there with their bias and to that I say, good luck earning respect. You may be successful but you won't have respect from those who were or could be your audience. You have to show respect to earn it.
From self published writers, the complaint is that those who go the traditional publishing route are sell outs. They call them "cookie cutter" writers, who will shape and twist and mold their story out of the element of the original idea in order to fit an editor's demands.
From traditionally published writers, the complaint is that those who go the self published route are no good. They haven't put in the time or learning and they want to get published without doing the work required. In addition, their self published work is all poor quality and doesn't deserve recognition at all.
I mentioned Writer's Beware because even the person doing their Facebook page fed into the frenzy of it, claiming that she heard more self published writers criticizing traditionally published writers than vise versa. While I respect Writer's Beware, this statement disappointed me. As a representative of such a professional site, a bias of either should have been restricted to the person's personal Facebook page. Now in all fairness, she didn't say anything about whether she thought that self published writers were full of it, but the bias was slightly implied, thus leaving a margin of question there.
In any case, the debate, to me, is useless. There are good and bad writers everywhere whether self or traditionally published. Having a high and mighty attitude either way will do you no favors, that's for sure. And how will poking your nose in and trying to make someone else feel bad about their career decisions help your own career? It doesn't. Worry more about your own writing instead.
But bad writers make us all look bad!
Um, no they don't. Bad writers make themselves look bad, regardless of which platform they've published on.
The lesson here is that if you can't be happy for or support another writer, then go about your own business instead of criticizing their choices. If you'd like to put in your two cents, then review their work instead of criticizing them as a person. After all, how do you know what kind of writer they are unless you read them?