Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Let's Talk [v1.5] - The negative comments edition

Okay, so it's a Tuesday and not a Saturday, and supposedly the Let's Talk series is over.  But this situation is one that most, if not all, bloggers have faced before.  I would love to hear what you think about it, and how you handle the situation when faced with it.

Part One: Anonymous 
We've all faced it before.  That one comment that can ruin an entire day, left behind by a no-name author with a grudge.  They condemn our beliefs, undermine our intentions, then disappear without a single shred of evidence to point toward who could've left such inconsiderate remarks.  The are filed under the name "Anonymous," a synonym for cowardly peeping Toms that don't have enough courage to leave their thoughts with their true identity.

This doesn't encompass those without a Google ID, and therefore check anonymous yet leave their own name at the end.  In the blogging world, we understand that you may not use the same server as the writer.  Therefore, if you're willing to identify yourself, then this isn't about you.
Source: piccsy.com via Kendall on Pinterest

If you're a pretty involved blogger, you read the comments others leave for you.  Whether you monitor them or not; hopefully you at least check them out since the majority of readers have something decent and uplifting to say.  Then you see it.  That one comment that completely ruins your entire day, makes you want to shut down the entire blog, never write again.  That person probably knows what they've done; they know they have the power to knock you down.

Part Two:  What To Do
How do you deal with these situations?  Do you ignore it?  Reply to it?  Call them out in hopes they'll return and see your rebuttal?  Everyone is different.

A family friend, someone I've known since I was eight years old, recently had to deal with such an issue.  Her blog faces the difficulties of infertility, the joys of adoption, and the surprises that await us around every turn; in her case, the amazing ability to have two children naturally.  Recently, she announced some amazing news, which was (for the most part) very well received.  But then, Anonymous struck [see post here].  They left behind words, hurt feelings, low self-esteem.  They left behind a blogger who honestly considered ending her blogging career, despite the numbers of women who look to her for guidance and support.  With a few short sentences, they left behind chaos.

There are so many options for coping with these predicaments.  In this case, Wendi responded with well written and detailed bullets.  She made a stand against Anonymous, despite her feelings of betrayal, to correct their misconstrued views and to rally those that actually do support her.  The sheer number of people that responded to Anonymous' comment should've drowned out those words, but we all know the negative responses are the ones that stay with us the longest.

So, how do you deal with these scenarios?  I tend to delete the negative comments and not respond.  While this blog is very open to all forms of opinions and ideas, even those that contradict my own, there is no room for blatantly mean behavior.  I especially refuse to call attention to those specific people since that's more than likely what they're wanting me to do.  Do you respond to them?  Delete the comment?  Ask for advice?  How do you get back up on your feet after such an issue?


  1. Very will written, and I wholeheartedly agree with you. The fact that someone can be so cruel to a blogger blows my mind. Thanks for touching on this!

    Silver from A Silver Snapshot

  2. Hate the rude comments, ESPECIALLY anonymous. I haven't had many, but I just ignore and move on. I think in the grand scheme, if it becomes more frequent, I'm not taking the time to address all of them, so I won't start replying/blogging about any. People like that are just trying to get a rise, and I'm not going to give them that!

  3. It's tricky, eh?

    I've had them (not often). I'll continue to have them. But I honestly cannot bring one to my mind. They're silly little digs at a recipe or something, like a suggestion that they could make something much better. Probably true. I don't care.

    My situation is different than Wendi's very different. The difference is I typically never write about things that are close to my heart. I'm too sensitive. I COULDN'T handle harsh criticisms about things that are very dear to me. I write about the yummy, the crafty, and the mundane parts of my life that I deem beautiful. And I love sharing that part of me. And I'll continue to do so for a long time. I love Wendy's openness and bravery in writing about things that are close to her heart. That's why I read her blog!

    For my blog, I've chosen to never (or very seldomly) write publicly about things that are very personal for me. Things such as our very specific decisions about how we parent Audrey, my theological doctrines as a Reformed Christian (why sow discord among the brethren that believe differently? I'll stick to the simple things), or my personal struggles. I've chosen not to touch these things on my blog but I'm VERY open about talking about them "in real life". Not everyone may choose to run their blog that way, but I've chosen only to share a specific part of myself online. Not the whole of me. There are just parts of my heart that I want to protect.

    Maybe one day I'll pluck up the courage to be more... personal.

  4. Great post, by the way! Always gets me thinking.

  5. Luckily, I've never received anything negative. But I haven't really written anything but fluff so far so... we'll see. I suspect I'd delete it and move on. I don't understand why people ever feel the need, on blogs or FB or Pinterest even!?! to be negative. Just scroll on past!

  6. English ... wow ... you got me thinking.

    This has stuck with me incredibly. I was nearly sick about it for two days. Mostly because my feelings (and my skills at motherhood were just so incredibly wounded.)

    In the end, I think I have chosen NOT to moderate my comments but to, instead, delete one that is painful in the future.

    To Talia, I agree with her completely (man are you two grown up by the way). If you go into the personal, you must expect more personal rebuttals. It is my ministry. Truly, I tihnk I have to get tougher skin (always admired that of you by the way English.

    I have had this happen a few times -- but nver anything so biting and to the core of who I am as a person. In the future, you were so right. One comment is not worth so much attention.

    The whole "not seeing Jesus" thing is still REALLY bothering me though, and I am not sure howto make peace with that. Thanks for coming in with all 5 foot something of you and having my back.

    BY THE WAY .... COMING TO GERMANY. We need to connect!!!! Gonna email you now.

  7. i very rarely get comments at all. i have had one nasty one and they didn't know what they were talking about cause if they knew me and everything they wouldn't have said what they did. but i basically just deleted it. other then that i havent done much since i get few comments.

  8. Last year, I got a virus by opening an anonymous comment, so I turned off anonymous comments! I'm very happy that if someone wanted to say something mean, they would have to give their identity :) Well, unless they create a whole anonymous profile, and then I wouldn't pay any attention to a person that goes through that much hassle just to be mean. People these days....

  9. My last Anonymous comment was particularly nasty - someone ranting and raving about my weigh/appearance post-steroids. I was pretty shocked, but maybe I shouldn't have been, since people always seem to be much ruder and meaner online than they would ever be in person. Funny that. :P


I respond to every single comment, but only via email. If you don't have an email linked to your account, then I won't be able to respond to you! That doesn't mean I don't read your notes, though. Every single one makes my day better.