Doug just forwarded me a reply we got following a rejection of a story for CSS. Our response had basically been that it was fine and there was a lot to like but it was a little self conscious for us (like a lot of subs we get it was trying to be tricksy and self conscious and a little post modern pulp which can put us off). We wished the author luck and also said that since he had a novel out we'd be happy to put up a piece about it or to add a link or do something. We also asked about the press that had published it since we didn't know them and we always like to learn about and support smaller presses.
One of the things we do (and we say this on the site) is try to include reasons for rejection. We always try and say a little of why we rejected something. If you get a "not for us" letter it usually means we liked it but just couldn't find a place for it. We may be small but we have a plan for each issue and a set number of fiction spaces.
Oh and the best bit, the guy said he found our so-so story when he was "searfing".
Doug sent back a response wishing the guy well and pointing out we reject a good number of stories. I think he took the high road in this one.
Basically, I don't think its a good idea to send back letters to editors claiming that they were wrong to reject your manuscript or, even more arrogantly, that your stuff is far better than what they publish (or what they write, Doug wasn't sure if the guy was talking about one of his stories or one of the stories on the site). Even if it is true. Sometimes editors make mistakes, we accept that and we wish everyone we reject the best of luck with their manuscripts and dreams. Really if you make it big and we've rejected then more fool us. We don't care, in the end, though, because we publish what we like when we like. And when we offer to lend a helping hand with links etc its not because we think we'll make or break your career but its because we want to help in any way we can. Because we support writers.
And besides, what's the point in being an arrogant asshole? We're all in this shit together. We reject you because we *can't* publish everything we get. Its as simple as that. And when we give advice or opinion we're not trying to be rude. We're pointing out what we thought. Take it or leave but don't bother telling us we're full of shit. We know that already.