A question if I may, about appropriate methods of dealing with academic bullies (or as one of my students call them "wannabe nemesis"). What would be the best, most dignified way to 'overcome' them, while protecting your own research interests andreputation?
To clarify what I mean by an academic bully - first and foremost, I am not referring to those that offer critiques in any constructive forms (even in an aggressive manner), I am referring to the academics that who, for whatever reason (usually due to disgreeing with research findings or feeling threatened by 'newcomers' to the research field), decide to go on the offensive with insults, threats, and the like.
Finally, I am referring to, if the communication is direct (by email. letter or in person).