The problem is I don't think everyone agrees on what constitutes a good or the closest representation of the original work. Works of art are experienced - they don't have inherent value
What determined art to be good or bad might fall deeply into the realm of relativity and personal taste,
or even brand.
A stick-like figure that I made might not even worth a penny, but if it's made by Picasso with his signature on it, it might mean more than what it actually represents, it might be worth a million dollars.
But if we talk about an adaptation of a work, we cannot avoid the fact that the work is used as a reference for the making of the adaptation and it is consequently will be again used as a reference to measure how good it is as its adaptation, you might not agree with that technical measurement or definition, but it's a valid definition after all. We cannot separate the original work from the adaptation that is supposed to represent it.
Strict adherence to superficial aspects of a work will likely not result in the equivalent experience when translating it into another medium. And beneath this, there are also practical considerations. Let's take a film adaptation as example. A film needs to sell tickets. If the director believes that the average film-goer will not enjoy and understand the film as much as the director did the original work, then the director will make whatever changes is deemed necessary in order for the average film-goer to enjoy and understand it, since appealing to the average film-goer is likely necessary to sell enough tickets.
Fans might complain that it's changing aspects of the source material, and therefore the director failed in the mission of adapting the work in those respects. But if average film-goers then enjoy and understand the adaptation as much as many fans did the original work, then is there not a legitimate reason to say that the director represented the work well?
I don't think the feeling of discomfort is a good measure for judgement. If we base our views on that feeling alone, then we'd never get past our prejudices.
Pure emotivism makes the enjoyment of art poorer overall, as we would not have any reason to consume anything unless we automatically find it enjoyable.
These kinda contradict themselves Aelf. In the first quoted commentary you measure the success of a work through its sales, when you talk about how good it sells you are focusing more on the consumer enjoyment of a product, the indicator of good adaptation or a bad one would be, does it sells well or not?
While at the second quoted commentary, you want people to level up their standard beyond their feeling comfort or discomfort so they can appreciate high art.
But I understand your point, your point is people should stop complaining about some adjustments or changes that happened in the adaptation, something that you consider as some minor adjustments, things like the country origin of the main character or their race, their age, their gender perhaps, and all other details that you deemed to be non-essential. You hope people, especially fans of the original work, should past the staggering discomfort of that distortion from the main body of the original work and get used to it and shrug it off.
While for me the point of adaptation is to deliver a visualized version of the original work, while keeping in mind all the production difficulties and time limitations and every technical difficulty, the main purpose of an adaptation to represent the original work is never changed, so do the measurement of how good it is.
Or else it should not be called adaptation instead they can call it a re-imagination, or a work that is heavily inspired by the original work, but when we say it is the adaptation then we shouldn't be surprised if fans and appreciators are pissed when their female Chinese main character get represented by a male white dude. And it's not emotive, because it's not something that comes out of nowhere, there is a clear reason and measurement as to why they found the adaptation is a bad one. I'm not saying your ability to withstand the unfaithful adaptation is wrong, but I also believe that it's completely understandable if fans or appreciator of a work disappointed when their favorite work get distorted and butchered by the adapter.