Monday, October 3, 2011

Haters, Part II

My post about the hateful behavior that comes out when people feel the "power" of being anonymous online sparked a response from several readers. Many of my readers applauded my post questioning the belligerent, nasty and hateful comment threads I commonly read online. I got asked if I get haters bothering 3L Publishing. The answer to that question is that I do receive the rare, unsolicited comments. I don't take any of it personally, though. People who dare to write spite and hate are not typically my friends or allies (obviously). Most of my true associates in my network wouldn't dare to say some of the nasty things I've read spewed out there. We did have this so-called "watchdog" group go at 3L pretty aggressively. I am sharing this because frankly I found it sort of funny. To be clear, the woman who runs the group has never worked with us. She never spoke to us. And she doesn't know a single client. She spoke out of turn and incited a flame war on her board and then acted innocent about it. Now it's not funny but if you have a sense of humor, you just have to laugh. Some of these flamers (again, who I have never met or spoken to) called 3L a litany of "L" words that were mean-spirited. I never thought that having an "L" in the company name could be so inspiring to the imaginations of some bitter minds. I suddenly floated back to the first-grade playground. Really? And if you're a moderator who attracts readers who would flame at that level, you ought to wonder about what you're doing. You've attracted a legion of haters! What do they say, "Birds of a feather ..." If I was at all concerned about my image, I might question why I attract such hate. This woman was so caught up in defending her right to spread misinformation, she disconnected from the fact that she had corrupted her own board with just nasty comments from her readers. It never occurred to her she was responsible for what people were saying and speaking out of turn. Yet she started the thread, maintained the discussion, and was apparently not at all bothered that she was creating a forum for people to spread misinformation and just nasty comments. I frankly would never allow that on this blog. I would delete comments that were unproductive and inaccurate -- but I suspect flamers and people like this woman don't care. We need to start caring. We need to get back to basics here. What you learned in kindergarten ... remember? My daughter comes home all of the time and shares how she is learning about respect, courtesy and friendship. It's very cute. In her second-grade class when friends have a disagreement they can discuss it and apologize by using the "Friendship Rose" as an offering to say "friends again." Maybe we all need a "Friendship Rose" in cyberspace.

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