This is nonsense. About Ross, anyways. Having been around during that time, and a watcher of Friends, I recall that in the early seasons of the show most people liked Ross. It was only later on in the show’s run that people began to turn against him, and most of the reason was because of how he treated Rachel, his irrational jealousy and insecurity, his possessiveness, his tendency to whine about his still hugely privileged existence, and his arrogance. It had nothing to do with him being smart. Chandler was also quite intelligent (his original job was doing something with numbers that literally nobody else was able to understand), but he became one of the most well-liked characters on the show.