As you say, its fair enough to listen to others, take some serious consideration, and make your own decisions.
Paying other people (Mug2k will remain nameless), is sheer stupidity and takes all the satisfaction out of trading your own ideas and using your own skill / knowledge / instinct / analysis or whatever.
I think it's OK to use other peoples trading to make you money, while agreeing that there is more satisfaction in doing it yourself.
In answer to your statement that you cannot understand what you've done to deserve this crap, just read the comments today.
I have and they are very clear to me. If you answer their questions you will stop them carping. If you don't answer them you only have yourself to blame.
I hope you have success with your system but you must show it works, in real time, or you will be wasting your time getting anyone to believe you.
This isn't aimed at Mug2K, this goes for following anyones system.
My problem with following other peoples trades, is that if you make money then you feel great, on top of the world - until that person is no longer around. Your then left high and dry, feeling frustrated and annoyed. Remember:
Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you'll have a trust fund, maybe you'll have a wealth spouse - but you never know when either one might run out
On the flip side, if the trades don't work, then you will have the greatest opportunity to blame someone else, and therefore not accept the responsibility for your actions - which is one of the key things in trading.
If you follow someone else's system you are not really a trader but an investor of that particular system. You then rely heavily on that individual providing you with the full service. Not just entry but exit and risk management and so on. I know many that backed tipsters during the bull run who failed badly when the bear market descended. The tipstser worked off of fundamental analysis and kept saying buy when the chart was saying SELL.
The benefit of understanding other traders set-ups is to see for yourself how it works, the confidence you can get from it but ultimately you find a part of it that may work for you and in the end you develop your own set-up that you are comfortable and confident with. This covers all aspects of the trading game so all avenues are covered not just the entry position.
That is why this site others such good service to traders where the few who are prepared to post there charts and explain the system they follow are so useful to the development of others. Just do not make the mistake of thinking when you see such a post you will be able to copy it and trade well, trading is more than that as I find to my own cost when given a specific set-up from a trader who had used it for years. The system was sound but I could not cover it with discipline. It did not cover all market behaviour so missed opportunities to trade. In the end I went back to the drawing board and looked at systems and what I liked myself. In the end I developed a set-up that worked for me and resolved emotional trading.