These are just two of the things that I have been called today.
In January, I posted about an interaction I had on Facebook with a blogger and her followers, and asked for your feedback. Today that blogger announced that, because of my post, she had cried for half an hour, was emotionally distraught, and planned to delete her blog and Facebook page at 3 PM because of it. Afterwards, comments began pouring in from her followers onto her Facebook page and onto my post. I was at work, so I could not respond or approve the comments yet, but I was well aware of the situation.
At 1 PM, the blogger announced that she did not plan to “give in to cyber bullying” and planned to keep her Facebook and Blog, thanks to the outpouring of support from her followers. I am extremely happy that she made this decision, I just hate that I wasn’t able to contact her beforehand. I hate that my post caused so much emotional distress for someone, and would even cause someone to think about deleting their pages. Her blog is loved by many, and she enjoys writing it, so I hope she continues her online presence and that her community grows.
Several of the comments on my blog, as you will see, refer to me as a troll. For those of you not familiar with this term, it’s one commonly used to someone who comments on pages, blogs, and discussion boards with the intent of starting a war. My original comment on her Facebook page has been deemed a “troll-esque” comment. I can assure you that this was not my intent behind my comment. SOPA/PIPA are amazingly huge deals in our world, and so I do not consider them a laughing matter. When I saw the comments on the page, I was worried that these commenters may not know about the issue, and so I posted. Looking back, I agree that the language I used does come off rude and assuming, though I can promise, as I stated before, that this was never my intent. Tone is a powerful thing over the web, as it can be interpreted in so many ways, and in this post, I could have controlled it better.
As for my blog post on the matter, I wrote it to reach out the community I know on the web because I trust my readers to be honest and open with me. This post was not written to lay a smack down on the blogger or her readers, but instead to discuss the event, step by step and my reactions to it, as well as the importance of consistency when it comes to page conduct and policies. I asked you for your opinions to see what you thought, not to harass someone via the web or to be a cyber-bully.
While I stand by the fact that sticking to your policies and avoiding group attacks is important, I do hope that you can all understand that I did not intend personal harm to anyone with my posts. I know that the blogger in question, after posting her original comment about leaving the web and her secondary comment about staying, removed said comments because of the cyber-harassment that proceeded in her comments section, and has since posted about “olive branches to everyone”. I couldn’t agree more.
As for those of you who commented on my post, both good and bad, I thank you for sharing your opinions, as that is exactly what I asked for in the post. I know that many of you thought that I wouldn’t post your comments due to the delay in my ability to approve them, but as Internet censorship is such an important issue for me, I have approved every single one, even those that assume I am possessed. I appreciate you sharing your opinions with me, but in the spirit of diplomacy, I will be closing that post to further comments. If you feel the need to respond, feel free to comment here.