The topic is not a new one, but I was inspired the other day by my friend and co-host. After taping a live show, we were discussing the idea of comments and how much we enjoy interacting with viewers through the comments they make about the show. It quickly became a group discussion with our other co-hosts, and we each began to exchange personal stories about the comments we have had, in our experience, intended for us. It seems the consensus was, while we really enjoy feedback both positive and constructive criticism, none of us were immune to the virtual blows of negative comments that seem to exist simply to be, well, negative! I have had a few negative comments, but they never have truly affected me. I think the ones I was “gifted” with, because I didn’t believe them, rolled off my back and I didn’t pay them any mind. I think if I were presented with something negative, but constructive, I would take it into consideration, and advance accordingly.
I remember last year having the same discussion with another friend and fellow host. She had a harder time with negative feedback. We had some really interesting discussions about it and I encouraged her to really think about it in a different way. The world is very different now, with the (quick) technological and social media advances and what I wanted her to understand was that the very people who are sitting behind their computers, in some arbitrary locale, in who knows what part of the world, have it the easiest. How do they make the choice to intentionally post crude, insulting and otherwise berating comments about other people, who are trying to be honest and creative? That would take an entirely separate blog post to decipher. I did tell her that they are considered “safe” in their anonymity and I highly doubt that they would have the courage or ability to do what it is she does. I am not saying that it’s easy to dash these comments aside and keep it moving. I actually don’t have the answers. Everyone reacts differently. I can’t even imagine how it must feel to be a public figure or celebrity with the amount of denigrating comments they constantly receive! I understand it when I hear some of them say they don’t even read what’s out there about them! Some years ago Tyra Banks did an entire show on the topic, back when she had her talk show. She actually spoke to some of the “cyber bullies” and tried to delve into their psyche to discover the why. You may be able to find the episode online, but I do remember one part of the conclusion was that these people are everyday people who don’t feel good about themselves, and so they project that insecurity onto others.
I bring all of this up to say that, while I don’t have the answers, I was inspired by my friend, and co-host, for being part of the solution! She shared with us, in that post-show discussion, that she once was reading negative comments under a video she had watched, and proceeded to spend a significant amount of time counter-commenting. She went through each negative comment and in her responses, defended the owner of the video in question. Wow! What an optimistic reaction! I was so happy to hear that she had done that, and had to share it with you, my readers. I challenge you to do what she did and stand up for someone else, even if you don’t know them. Actually, this doesn’t have to be restricted to video or article comments. This is something that can be exercised in everyday life and everyday scenarios.
I would love to hear about your experiences so feel free to comment below! (smile)