Saturday, November 18, 2006

A Fly in the Ointment

I suddenly have an anonymous commenter who has nothing good to say. So far this person has managed to convey that I don’t know what I’m talking about and that my chocolate mousse looks like a pile of shit and told me in the mousse post to “get a life.” That one didn’t exactly compute.

Since I started Blogging almost 2 years ago, I’ve had many readers who don’t leave comments, but I have had few anonymous commenters who didn’t give me a clue as to their real identity. The pattern I’ve seen across the Blogosphere is that these people generally leave insulting comments that they hope will hurt the author. Maybe they are trying to embarrass or get a rise out of someone who is generally a positive person. I suspect they usually have an ax to grind that may or may not even involve the Blogger.

If indeed the problem is with the author, why not take the more direct approach of sending an e-mail message than continuing to post hate messages on someone’s Blog? Most people would welcome the chance to have an open exchange without even requiring the person to reveal his or her identity.

I’ve watched other people deal with far bigger problems in this arena than I have. Some have killed their Blogs. Others have started requiring a password to allow their readers access to their posts. Others have invoked comment moderation.

I know a lot from my StatCounter about where my hater is coming from. This all started with the “sad pet story”, so I assume this is a person who is for some reason unhappy about what I wrote.

I’ll wait a day or two before deciding to turn on comment moderation. That will definitely allow me to see what people have to say before publishing it. It’s too bad when one person makes this necessary.

But meanwhile, if you want to contact me off-Blog, my e-mail address is I invite you to continue to speak your mind about what I write. I am not in the least offended by a difference of opinion, but snarky comments that are simply meant to hurt are not welcome.


Blogger Mad Monk said...

Yeah, it's never good.

I've never had someone do that to me, but I would be pretty mad.

I like how you write, and don't ever be tempted to kill the blog.

5:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think people generally ignore snarky comments. I mean that the snarky comments aren't a reflection on you. But I concur that your commentor is somehow related to the vet's office.

11:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As you know I had this problem a while ago and decided to turn on comment control but the email requests to publish comments got out of hand, so I turned it off.

Since your blog is so beautifully written with great feeling, it would be a shame if you were intimidated by anonymous comments. The fact that you published your email address for a personal dialogue only emphasizes how classy you are.

The anonymous of the world are unhappy people with nothing to share but their vitriol.


8:46 AM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

It's too bad there are people like this in the otherwise wonderful blogosphere. I suspect it is someone who hasn't a blog anyway, so they won't be bothered to do this much longer. If it is from the Vet's office, they will not continue as it becomes an old issue. Sometimes there are just plain old weird people out there, with personanlity quirks or syndromes who just lash out at everything and feel power from doing so.

I admire you with the way you are dealing with this...we all understand. I deleted my whole blog once because I had some person who spent all their time on mine night and day and I didn't want to be anyone's obsession. Now, I know better. Carry on as usual!

9:08 AM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I find it difficult to deal with the anonymous or even the labeled but inappropriate and unwarranted comments. I still dwell on hateful comments that I've received from people who were obviously clicking through "next blog." They hurt.

I think that some people have gone overboard with the comment moderation, the password protection and the blog killing; if you're generating that much heat, maybe you should reconsider what you're writing.

Of course, a blog is a personal journal. But it's in a public forum and some things are a bad idea (lying, contorting, attacking). But it is a journal... I don't know!

You don't write hurtful things. I don't get the comments. Crazy.

10:25 AM  
Blogger Richard said...

I think it is one of those drive-by-comments that tends to rattle us, rather like crank or anonymous phone calls. As long as they don't become chronic, I see no problem.

I have no reason to believe that this person was actually targeting you. There are other blogs I read where very definite, very personal attacks are made by anonymous commenters. Sometimes it gets bad enough and they move their blog. Disabling anonymous comments should go a long way to eliminating this sort of stuff.

Alternatively, it might not even be a real person, it just might be some robot looking for blog pages to post something nasty. More typically, the message is more like, "Been reading your blog. Very interesting stuff. You might like to check out." And they link you to some page - these are marketing driven posts designed to boost traffic to a particular site. I can definitely see some depraved individual thinking it is funny to randomly drop garbage on people's blogs.

The only advantage I see with comment moderation is that you can prevent unwanted comments from appearing. I wish blogger would allow the blog owner the power to delete unwanted comments. They allow users to delete their own comments, why can't the blog owner delete comments that (s)he doesn’t want? The whole comment moderation thing seems a bit excessive.

9:26 AM  
Blogger Jamy said...

I find those kinds of comments disturbing too. And your anon doesn't even make sense. It's petty, mean and hurtful.

It is one reason I like "haloscan" for my comments. You can block repeat offenders and delete individual comments. I've only done this once or twice, but it's nice to have that control.

10:23 AM  
Blogger steve said...

There is obviously something very wrong with anyone that has a problem with Chocolate Mousse'.
Need we say more?

2:32 PM  

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