Monday, 21 September 2015

Lets All Play Fair


Blogland is such a wonderful place when everything runs smoothly.  Bloggers blog, we read each other's posts, followers, commenters, lurkers and all those lovely people that skip in and skip out of our daily posts bring with them opinions, ideas and sometimes just plain simple encouragement when encouragement is most needed.

BUT, and yes that is a great big BUT, it has a dark side.  Every day for the past month I have had to spend five minutes skimming through tons of Spam, deleting it and clearing things away before getting down to the business of writing a post.  I could leave it to build up and have a mammoth all in one go deleting session, but every now and then in amongst all the negative dross, comments asking my readers to link back to sites where their computers would be at risk, links to sites where they would be offered viagra and other things that if they actually wanted they could find for themselves from much more legitimate places, there is a delightful comment from a new reader that I simply won't let be lost somewhere out there in cyberspace.

And there is an even darker side, there is bullying, it goes on ....  nasty people leaving comments anonymously thinking they are safe to do so, thinking that hiding behind the magic word 'Anonymous' means they can't be traced, can't be brought to task and can't be outed.  NOTHING you delete from your computer is EVER truly deleted.  If complaints are brought and legal action taken you CAN and you WILL be found.

And then there is the darkest side of all .... false accusations of bullying with no proof, just insidious hints that lead back to a person that is completely innocent of any wrongdoing, save that of standing up for their own opinions, rights and families.  Now THAT is the darkest side of all.  Innocent commenters and readers are drawn into the libel, because make no mistake that is what it is, and malicious rumours spread, making this once joyous interesting place a darker more menacing one.

Ella Woodward on her Deliciously Ella blog post today has hit the nail on the head, talking about the negative side of social media.  It has made many bloggers take a break in the last few months, some are reappearing now after a well deserved break, but others are gone for good, fed up with the negative comments and hurtful remarks.  In this country it seems so many like to help a person climb a ladder of success only to immediately join in with those  who want nothing more than to topple them right back down again.

We have a level of power as Bloggers, we can delete comments that we feel are hurtful or negative, we can block some individuals from reading our blogs, we can alter our settings to stop spam or anonymous comments appearing unannounced at the bottom of our posts.  If all that is not enough we can choose to go private or to simply stop when the going gets too tough.

I usually try to nip things in the bud if some nasty anonymous comment appears by answering back with a jokey remark.  I hold my hands up to occasionally deleting a comment that has total negative connotations, but extremely rarely.  I feel that people should have a voice, but I have always lived by the saying that 'if you have nothing nice to say you should say nothing at all', it has stood me in good stead and will hopefully continue to do so.

Like Suky the Pug at the top of this post, only if you can look someone fully and truthfully in the eyes and tell it as it is ... should you tell it at all.

Sue xx


35 comments:

  1. Hello Sue, I rarely comment and generally lurk if I do comment it's always anon, not because I'm hiding but generally as a techno idiot I'm not sure if I doing it right. However I do feel sorry that those blogs that I regularly visit are quickly disappearing because people can not and will not "play nicely". I too was raise with the "if you can't say anything nice then say nothing" so fail to understand when people attack those who are prepared to share their life experiences and hint and tips with those of us still learning. Thank you for your blogging and patience. Mrs H

    ReplyDelete
  2. That's my motto too Sue, if you have nothing nice to say then say nothing. I can't understand why people would bully or leave nasty comments - surely it's a bit like watching the TV; if you don't like the programme, switch to another channel or switch the TV off. No one has to read someone's blog and if they don't like it, they can read other blogs they prefer, or read none. There are enough problems and nastiness in the world without bloggers adding to it.

    Keep up the great work - I read your blog every day and love it xx

    ReplyDelete
  3. The problem with the latest 'issue' is that who do you believe?
    If both sides say totally different things what can you do but sit on the fence?
    Unless we have access to both parties internet history how can we be sure who is telling the truth.
    It's so sad that blogland has come to this.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Sue, Love your blog, Totally agree with what you say. I can't understand why people don't just stop reading a blog if they don't like it! People change- a blog might amble off in a direction that 's not so interesting to you, Not a problem and certainly not a reason to get all angry and bitchy. I love bloggers, the time and trouble they put into their blogs should be applauded not muttered about in the naughty corner! Best wishes Lisa x

    ReplyDelete
  5. I agree and use comment moderation. Best to you.

    ReplyDelete
  6. PLEASE, PLEASE, OH PLEASE don't stop blogging, you and Frugal Queen are a daily fix for me, there are far more with you than there are against you. I too have to post this as 'anonymous' 'cos I'm a technowally
    regards Teresa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha, really you have no need to worry, I have no plans to stop blogging in the near future. And I am sure Froogs still has lots of exciting times ahead :-)

      Delete
  7. Sensible sentiments. I have been very lucky- only had lovely comments left by those kind enough to take the time to write them. I use comment moderation and work on the basis that if it's not something I would say face to face to someone then nor is it appropriate to leave in a written form. Better to say nowt I find. Arilx

    ReplyDelete
  8. I agree with that sentiment..if you having nothing nice to say then don't say it..i have only had nice comments so far but i am braced for the day when i get a nasty one..i have had spam..cheeky devils.
    I love reading my comments and always feel that somehow somewhere i have made some one smile..blogland is a wonderful place and i have been welcomed in with open arms thanks to you:)
    You take care Sue..we love you..
    love
    sara,fern,iris

    ReplyDelete
  9. I have only ever received one sarcastic comment & I fired back with a quick reply. Keep up the good work Sue xx

    ReplyDelete
  10. I agree with you Sue , some people just seem to want to hurt or bully. I follow quite a few blogs and love reading them. One blogger I follow is regularly hassled by an awful troll who uses different names. At one stage the blog was removed. I respect the time that bloggers take to blog for us. Thank you Sue and for the sweet photo of Suky.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I'm your daily lucker as well. The day is not the same if I don't hear what you are up to.
    Keep up the good work.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I have one stalker who leaves mentally ill comments regulary
    I have reported her/him
    But nothing is done....
    I just keep quiet not and delete her comments quietly as soon as they appear

    ReplyDelete
  13. I don't allow anonymous posts on my blog - too much headache and most of it is spam:) Who needs that crap.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I don't think Iv'e ever had a nasty comment. Iv'e had plenty of people that haven't agreed with me. That doesn't make them a Troll ( as some people so quickly call people) just someone who doesn't agree with me. I can handle that. They are entitlement to their opinion, as that is all it is.
    I have been following the blog I believe you are alluding to and feel that if she KNOWS who the negative commenter is she should out her. Otherwise it is, as you say, libel and hints and nuances help no-one.

    ReplyDelete
  15. It's too bad that unhappy people have to spread their unhappiness and spoil other people's happiness. I hope no one has been unkind to you. I am one of those people who will read without posting comments, for the most part, but, when I do comment, I identify myself. I am a bit behind with my blog reading after my cancer diagnosis earlier this month, but I'm catching up. Love all the produce you are getting from your garden and poly tunnel and how you are preserving them for the winter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope everything goes okay for you. Xx

      Delete
  16. If everyone lived by those principles though i wouldn't have a job!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ..... or the job you do have would be a whole lot nicer. Imagine a whole month of simply helping people who need help and having to deal with no low lifes :-)

      Delete
  17. All I can say life is too short to get into a spat on a blog. Bambi's mother was very wise indeed.

    ReplyDelete
  18. What a pain in the neck for you! Now, having thought about this 'nasty side' to life with cyberspace, I'm worrying for you. You said you have quite a tidy weight of money in your pot ... and I'm fearful there might be lowlife prepared to burgle you to as a result. What about having a trustworthy friend take your pot and deposit it in a bank account, in your name of course. That way, it would still be a secret treasure, but not a reason to disturb your peace.... I'm a real worrywart, aren't I!! But I do enjoy reading your blog, and I'd be very upset if someone took advantage of you....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not a pain in the neck for me at all, there is nothing that has affected me other than feeling angry on behalf of a blogging buddy.

      And risking your liberty , an attack by 2 defending dogs (Suky wouldn't hurt a fly let alone a burglar) to steal a tin full of copper would be crazy!!

      Be very sure nobody takes advantage of me.

      Delete
  19. Hi Sue. I'm a lurker too. I love blogs and have a list of my favourites. My friends laugh at me and say things like 'read a book!' But blogs are like books especially if you come across one and read from the beginning. And you can learn so much! I have tried recipes and patterns and learnt no end of money saving tips! Love it. Glad your are not stopping Sue. Sad that some feel they have to though. Tricia x

    ReplyDelete
  20. I too am a firm believer of not saying anything if you can't say anything nice. I think blogs are generally lovely things. I'm a very poor blogger myself (as in not posting very often) but I fully appreciate all the blogs I read and the folks behind them letting me have a peep into their lives. Tis a privilege to be honest this internet lark.
    Lovely pic or Suky. May I ask how gorgeous Mavis is getting on lately? Does she still have a wandering eye?
    Bless you all xx

    ReplyDelete
  21. I think there are a lot of people who use blogland as an escape to places more interesting than where they actually live. I am house-bound for the last 2 years taking care of my 93 year old Mother. You have no idea how comforting it is to read about the activities of your day and feel as though I've just had a cup of tea with a friend. I can smell the soil in the poly tunnel and taste the crunchy lettuces you grow and even feel the season change in your part of the world. Thanks for keeping me sane during this time of confinement and letting all of us enjoy your interesting life.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Yes indeed, if you can't say anything nice don't say anything - advice from my mum long ago, & it still holds true. I do like to pop by & see what you've been up to, although I rarely comment I do enjoy your take on life & to read about your doings, it's a break from real life & always interesting. I see that My Beautiful Life blog has gone again, even yesterday's post saying that she's stopping because of negative comments has now gone, what a shame. It's so simple - if you don't like what you read, just stop reading, there's no need for negativity, it's just a sad reflection on those who post such negative dross. Thankyou for sharing your life with us & for being thought provoking too. Best wishes, Vee x

    ReplyDelete
  23. I am lucky not to have had nasty comments left on my blog...I do have some strange people who "like" my blog posts but that's not a problem. I enjoy reading your blog too, so I'm very glad to hear you're not going anywhere!!

    ReplyDelete
  24. I'm another "lurker" as I usually think I don't have anything to add, however I love your blog and always look forward to reading it. In a way the facebook 'like' would be quite helpful here; I'm definitely a fan but can't add tips on horticulture or dogs or freezing (all my attempts at growing veg have died, I wouldn't like to risk that on a dog and I only have a very small freezer). I love the photos as well and look forward to seeing how things are going with you. Keep it up! xx

    ReplyDelete
  25. Well said Sue, such a shame that you have to write it. Unfortunately there will always be people who, for whatever reason, seem to think it is acceptable to deride and abuse others.

    You said something that made me prick up my little ears:
    we can block some individuals from reading our blogs

    I have Googled this but the only way I know how to keep an unwelcome visitor away from 'Bag End' is to make the whole blog private which would exclude all the nice, normal 'anonymous' visitors who enjoy the blog but - for whatever reason - don't get in touch. If there is something I could do to make it impossible (or even difficult, I'd settle for that!!) for someone I would love to know.

    Many thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you go into your blog settings there is a box that lets you block individuals using their email addresses.

      Delete
    2. Sue, how do you do that if the individual comments as anonymous and you don't have an email address? Just wondered because it would make life easier if the nasties could be banished forever.

      Delete
  26. Sue, I lurk nearly every day too. I love your blog and the garden and animals, the cooking and building. Sorry you have had hassle. Bev

    ReplyDelete
  27. Once you get a lot of bullies and trolls it pretty well signifies you've got a popular blog - doesn't it? Is it possible that those trolls are really just people with low self esteem who have grown up with nasty parents that never had a kind or positive word to say? I know that doesn't mean much when you're the one being bullied, but you sort of have to feel sorry for the toughies out there. My own mother was one such bully - rest her angry soul. Keep on blogging Sue and try to ignore those that have never realized the best way to get attention is to be kind. D

    ReplyDelete
  28. I solved the problem of getting spam comments by changing my blog settings to not accept any anonymous comments. It was too much waste of my time deleting so much spam, one by one. Of course I also moderate the comments and thus far, everyone is playing very nicely indeed with their comments.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Can I just say categorically and for the last time ...... I am not being bullied or trolled, and have no problem dealing with the level of Spam that I receive. Leaving my blog settings the way they are means that more people can comment easier, so I have no problem with that.

    ReplyDelete