Oh, I've never had that happen IRL. It's always some photography forum or another (DPR, FM, etc). In person, we don't talk about gear all that much. Except this morning. I was wandering around the UW campus around dawn trying to frame a good shot (without another photographer in it) and was approached by a photographer who was also shooting an E-M5.I'm not sure I understand what you mean. I have photographer friends..who seem to think my choice of gear is not as good as their gear. FF. Reminds me of the old Nikon vs Canon arguments. I have never heard of artists arguing over which brand or size paint brush to use.
I just don't understand why it bothers some FF shooters so much, that M 4/3s is popular. It's not like FF dslrs are going away anytime soon.