Help handling rule disputes

When playing D&D, I have always taken the following approach:

  • I will do my best to adhere to Rules As Written (RAW)
  • If I don’t know a rule off the top of my head I will look it up
  • If something I say conflicts with RAW, I will look at the rule and reevaluate my decision
  • If RAW is not clear I will make a ruling

For the most part this has worked well for me, but I have found that certain players (while agreeing to this initially) are not happy.

What has been happening to me lately is that when I make a ruling and certain people are not happy with that ruling, they will basically stop playing to start googling for arguments to support how they thought the rule should have worked.

Sometimes this ends up coming back to this website, or Sage Advice, or even a random reddit post. The point, once this player finds someone online who agrees with them, an argument ensues about how that rule should be applied. I have been trying to explain to this person that Sage Advice, and similar posts are giving him a Rules As Interpreted (RAI) approach and in my attempt to use the RAW, I do not see it that way. This usually ends with this person getting upset and put out.

It has gotten to the point where they come with web sources prepped and just spring them on me mid-game, only to be upset if I don’t agree. It seems like the player is almost trying to set up a “gotcha” moment where they are right and I am wrong. If they spent more time talking to me about specific rules they are trying to “loophole” I might be able to help them and talk about it before the session, but it really feels like this person wants to be seen as right in front of the group and by springing these interpretations mid game, I won’t be able to disagree.

All I want to do is run a game where everyone has fun, and we aren’t constantly at odds about the rules.

How can I maintain my approach to the rules and find a way for this person to have fun without letting them walk all over any ruling I make?