Okay, the jokes are easy on this one. So I want to look another direction.
I'm going to say that the In Other Words staff is right.
What is 'Portlandia'? A hipster show that pokes gentle fun at hipsters, so those viewing -- and those that created the show -- can all nod knowingly about just how hip they are.
Self-infatuated, they know they cannot be Haters -- they know people of all colors, identities, etc who talk just like them, dress like them and laugh at the same things. But even nerds and geeks have a pecking order in their societies, and the artists of the show Portlandia are keen to show their dominance in theirs.
So what the staff may have initially perceived as kindred spirits has turned into watching their social superiors benefit by making fun of them, publicly. Yes, it is a very high-school thing, but for a lot of people High School HURT -- especially when mocked by friends. Which is kinda the underlying current of that bookstore, really: a hurt geek's sheltering basement.
Meanwhile, Portlandia is cross-dressing with little more subtlety than Milton Berle over a half-century ago.
Yes, I said it, Portlandia: Milton Berle. Make yourself hip using THAT..
I am The Replacement Laslo.