Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Anonymous...?

I did a post not long ago about various blogs where the blog owners had chosen to approve comments before they were posted. It seemed to me that more and more people were going in that direction, and I wondered why. None of us have blogs that are particular offensive, or even controversial. I stay away from blogs that are offensive, and I try to keep mine as non-offensive as possible. As I mention in my profile, I am not a writer. I am just a regular person who likes to share my thoughts, and to read about other folks' thoughts, lives, likes, dislikes, ideas, opinion, talents, hobbies, etcetera, etcetera... There is nothing really earthshaking going on here on my blog. I am always touched by how some people share really personal and private aspects of their lives. And when people post comments on my blog and share personal and private aspects of their lives with me, I accept that as a compliment -- and believe me, it really is.

Unfortunately, with any public forum, we open ourselves up for attack. I am always happy when people disagree with my ideas. I love a good debate; it's fun and refreshing. As I have stated in the comment space on my blog, "...don't be afraid to speak your mind, as long as it is not a personal attack. It's all in good fun..."

Occasionally I have various people on my blog who feel it is necessary to attack me personally, no matter what my post is about. My all-time favorite -- "Anonymous said... Blah, blah, blah...........has your chest exploded yet? You sure do know how to puff yourself up, don't you? "

Oh goodness... do I give that impression?

Unfortunately, I have removed the "anonymous" option in the comments box, however, I have not yet gone to enabling comment moderation. I feel rather sad for people who have to post angry comments anonymously. Their comments say more about themselves than they do about me. Anger and bitterness only poison the person who is carrying those feelings. It is really not me they feel anger and bitterness towards, but themselves. And it shows. It shows.

A very dear friend of mine said, "People who know you love you. Your self image should not be tainted by what someone else thinks of you - no matter who that person is....."

I have no ill-feelings towards any of my "Anonymous" commenters except to say I feel very sad that they find it necessary to be abusive. Life is too short for that nonsense. Remember, in life you can choose to be whatever you want to be. And if you want to be filled with anger, that's your choice. But please take it somewhere else.

42 comments:

flowrgirl1 said...

I agree with you completely. So many people feel that because it is on a computer that spouting off with such anger is ok and normal. i hope they don't go walking around in life with that kind of mentality. Though, i have ran into a few. Work in retail for awhile and you will find many that think its ok to treat people however they wish. I am a firm believer in "what goes around, comes around". Life is very short. Live it happily.

Judi said...

Good post. The Internet is not a place for sissies, is it? Our self-images are sometimes so fragile; certainly, mine is at times.

I have been under the impression that approving comments was just a method of weeding out spammers. I've been surprised at how often someone tries to sell something by relating the product to a post.

I'll share a personal story that had a profound impact on how I relate to people. My brother picked me up at O'Hare in Chicago. As we were driving to his house, we went through a toll booth at which time I observed him being friendly, pleasant, and respectful. It reminded me of how many times I had passed people without ever acknowledging them and I've been mindful not to allow that to happen again since that day many, many years ago. I think it is true that we receive what we give. That small gesture made a huge impact on his younger sister.

If Anonymous was from the U.S., I apologize on his behalf. We've had a few grumpy years here.

Deb said...

I feel sad for those folks, they must have some deep rooted issues, and of course they mess it up for everyone else

Arley said...

I agree with you as well. I don't understand why some people feel the need criticize others for sharing their opinion, life, ect. It's rude and shows a lack of respect for not only themselves, but the person they are belittling as well. I have the "Anonymous" setting blocked as well, and I am perfectly happy with that! Good for you Jo!

A Woman Of No Importance said...

There are a few anonymous folk about (I don't think it's all the same one) doing the same thing elsewhere, I have noticed - So try not to take their poisonous venom personally, if you can.

I am a firm believer in, 'What goes around, comes around', meaning they will get what is coming to them at some point. In my experience it always happens too!

Take care and don't change...

O. Joy said...

Wonderful post!! It really hit home! Anonymous posters lack backbone.... among many other things! I recently had to go to moderating when distant cousin & her friend found my blog & used it to post nasty comments about me. You are correct when saying some people are just bitter & nasty!! I'm with flowrgirl1 - Life is short. Live it happily! The heck with party pooper hoo-hahs!

Patricia Torres said...

I so agree with you.. But sadly people feel differently and go through different things in thier day.. When I see an awful comment or a frustrated persons mail.. I feel sorry for the person and wonder what they are really going through on that day... It can truely be anything..

Lovely blog.. I'm going to be a frequent visitor.. Thanks!!

Kimberly said...

I often wonder what drives a person to respond with such negativity and the responder always responds in secret. What's up with that? If you've got the "boys" to do it...then put your name forward, but thats just me.

Andrea said...

What a wonderfully honest post. One sentence sums it all up: "Their comments say more about themselves than they do about me." That is a wonderful lesson to learn and once you do, you're free!

DUTA said...

Please leave it the way it is: no moderation, no geo visits counter. Don't restrict Freedom of thought and movement to and from your blog because of some weed.

introspection said...

Hi Jo, This post was so needed for Mr/Ms Anonymous. I feel pity for such people that life is passing them by without much fun in it. Here at your post, we all say our thing, share with others have a little fun and relax. Our anonymous friend has to be so critical, negative, full of venom, and hide behind anonimity. Can hardly relax. Whatever has caused such thoughts and bitterness in their lives, must really be far worse than waht we can fathom. And as Jo put it, such reactions (anger, bitterness and hatred) speak more about the person who writes and not to whom it's written. It certainly shows.
Also agree that 'what goes round comes round'. So let's not worry, in fact let's send a prayer to the power who made this anonymous so angry/bitter, to replace it with love and respect. aamen.

Jo, you are loved by all of us around here, (though I am relatively new here) and a few lame and nasty comments by some hiding weakling will not make an aorta of a difference to how we feel about you. Good you disabled the anonymous option.
Let's all cheer up and go to this garden party at Jo's....!!!

willow said...

My thoughts exactly, Jo. It's sad that people feel free to be rude when they are incognito. "Anonymous" has left some nasties at Willow Manor, too. It's a terribly pathetic person who feels the need to vent in disguise. Don't let it get to you. You are a star in our bloggyhood!

Jo said...

Flowrgirl1, "Life is very short. Live it happily." I totally agree!

Judi, what a great story! Thank you for sharing that. And yes, it is important to treat everyone with respect, isn't it? It's not that difficult!

Deb, yes -- but if you think about it, almost everyone has deep rooted issues. None of us escape unscathed.

Arley, "It's rude and shows a lack of respect for not only themselves, but the person they are belittling as well." Oh, yes...

A Woman of No Importance, yes the negative, nasty remarks are always posted by "Anonymous", aren't they? And they are always critical of people who are open and transparent.

O.Joy, why is it almost invariably family members who post the negative stuff? Shouldn't they be the ones who are supportive? They certainly turn to us when they need support...!

Patricia, thank you. And yes, it says more about them, and what they are going through -- and their need to inflict discomfort on other people.

Kimberly, I agree. They should have the courage to sign their name to their comments, rather than being "anonymous"!

Andrea, yes, the whole point of their negative comments is to unload on us. I am not going to give them the opportunity anymore.

DUTA, thank you. I will probably turn the "anonymous" option back on eventually.

Introspection, thank you! Goodness! :-) And yes, "anonymous" is probably some poor unfortunate person who was neglected while they were growing up, and given absolutely nothing, and who has nothing in his/her life -- no education, no job or career, no money, no family, no blessings of any kind, living in a basement suite somewhere, feeling sorry for themselves that life treated them so badly. So we must feel sorry for them.

Willow, thank you! Gosh, I wonder if these people are as rude in real life? It's like poison, isn't it?

leilani said...

Jo... in order for us to KNOW good, we need to know BAD. Its the balance of things good and bad that lets us decide how we want to live !!! The bad comments makes me glad ive chosen the good !!! lol.. u rock Jo dont let anything BAD get to you.!!

Mary Ellen said...

It's such a shame that there are so many people on the Internet who choose to use it as a forum to attack others. It's happened on my blog from time to time and I've been attacked many other times while commenting on other blogs because someone didn't like my political or religious views. (Although I've never tried to force my religious belief's on anyone-I have a great respect for all views, religious or non-religious. After all, I'm married to an atheist AND he is an Obama supporter, and the marriage would never last if I wasn't able to respect his views.)

Those who choose to follow that behavior under the guise of anonymous are just cowards and I don't blame you for moderating that type of behavior.

Veronica said...

I agree with you Jo - it's a sad person who tries to bring someone else down in such a way. And whilst technically I agree with others who say, 'don't let the comments get to you', that's a lot easier said than done! The comment has been read and they are hurtful - goodness that's what 'anonymous' meant to do to you. I for one find it very difficult to just 'forget it'...

I also agree with everyone else who says to you 'We love you Jo and appreciate the efforts you go to with your posts'. Warm wishes to you Vxx

Lover of Life said...

Great post. I agree, totally. I've been very lucky to avoid "the haters", as they are known here in the US, (knock on wood.) Nor have I had a problem with spammers. Your blog is wonderful. Well written, interesting. Don't let a few detract from all your fans.

A Borg said...

Jo, in the few short weeks that I have been reading your blog I have had the privilege to get to know you a bit. I must say that, though we differ on some basic and even important principles, I very much appreciate your insight and candor. The manner in which you address touchy issues, such as this one, I find very edifying and charitably done. I cannot say that I deal with this 'personal attack' issue as well as you do, but that is a fault of mine.

Regarding the anonymous issue, I find it very cowardly to make a comment anonymously (though I could make exception for someone sharing a very personal and embarrassing fact about themselves for the benefit of others). Anonymous statements and accusations hold little weight with me. Most of the time they are offensive and only provoke bad blood.

We all know the bad reputation that the Spanish Inquisition has for injustice. Yet even then an anonymous accusation was not accepted in court. The accuser would have to present his claim directly to the inquisitors.

It was a similar protocol during the Roman persecutions. Roman law stated that no anonymous accusations were legitimate.

I guess I'm trying to say that it is really only a modern phenomena that somehow accepts anonymous statements as legitimate. Generally, someone who makes a statement anonymously has no credibility in my mind.

Jo said...

Leilni, thanks! I have no idea what makes people so angry and bitter. It's a choice they make, sadly...

Mary Ellen, yes, it is not only a cowardly attack, it is abusive. I wonder if they are abusive in their real life too.

Veronica, oh, yes, Anonymous probably used to be a very nice, sweet person at one time, but unfortunately life has made him/her bitter and resentful of anyone else who is not bitter and resentful. *sigh*

LoverOfLife, well, fortunately I have not had too many ugly negative remarks made to me, and I believe they are all from the same person.

A Borg, oh goodness yes. "Anonymous statements and accusations hold little weight with me. Most of the time they are offensive and only provoke bad blood." What sort of a coward hides behind anonymity? At least my blog is transparent.

TheChicGeek said...

Beautifully said. I feel the same way on the comments as you. If somebody wants to say something, go ahead...Maybe they should change Anonymous to "Too Chicken To Show My Face".
I don't mind at all when people disagree with me...that's what makes life so interesting :)
Have a Beautiful Day, Jo!

Firefly said...

I saw the remarks from Anonymous in your last post. Poeple like that truely have nothing better to do with their lifes than to be faceless and critisising. I know a lot of us have cyber personalities that may be slightly different from our real life personalities, but it still is part of who you are. Hiding behind anonymous comments to slate somebody is something done by somebody with no life. Now if only we can get rid of SPAM posters with blogger accounts.

Deedee said...

Jo - First of all - you ARE SO a writer, and a darned good one at that! Your posts are always interesting and well written. I think if someone is going to leave a comment, they should be mature enough not to be anonymous when doing so. It's okay to express an opposing opinion, but there is no excuse for being mean and disrespectful.
As far as the comment issue, your post about comment moderation inspired me to remove moderation and word verification from my blog. I have had no problem yet, and if I do I can always change it back.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

What is that old saying...Pretty is as pretty does...Too true.

jackc50 said...

first of all you write a wonderful blog that so many people look forward to. if one or two cretins out there disagree with you, so what? they're harmless. and stupid too, but thats their right. i wouldn't want people like that on my side anyway....ciao, jc

KathyB. said...

It is too bad some people are unable to be nice, even when they are in hearty disagreement with another. And you are right about this saying much more about them than they realize. It is also too bad that they are probably somewhat gratified that you have to adjust your habits and joys to accommodate such anti-social behavior! But then....that seems to be life, more and more, hey?

Kym said...

That is the sad part of the computer age that those out there choose to become cyber-bullies and anonymously say mean, spiteful things to others. I have always wondered if each generation has a percentage of the population that is regressing in maturity levels? I hope that my children listen to me when I tell them that the mean, harsh words from others are out of that person's own insecurities and should not be taken seriously, ever.

Country Girl said...

Bravo and well said, Jo. The heck with the nastiness. Life's too short.

Jo said...

TheChicGeek, "Too Chicken To Show My Face". I love it! Why do people want to hurt other people? I don't get it!

Firefly, yes, *sigh*. I have kept the anonymous option on long enough. It's not as if I am intentionally trying to offend anyone! Sheesh!

DeeDee, "...there is no excuse for being mean and disrespectful." I agree with you, there is no excuse for it. Whatsoever!

Kathy, oh goodness, yes. Oh, well...

Jackc50, you're so right. As DeeDee says, there is no excuse for being mean and disrespectful.

Kathy, I don't understand such behavior. I would never go onto someone's blog and speak to them like that -- even anonymously. It mystifies me.

Kym, that's the sad thing, isn't it? People who do that stuff don't understand that they are only making themselves look bad. On the Internet!

CountryGirl, yes, life is too short not to have fun...! I've had more than my share of drama...!

introspection said...

Hopefully by now 'anonymous' has been thoroughly fixed.
My hunch is that he/she will now do rounds of all our posts and mess up there to get back at us; but i am not turning my anonymous option down as I hope to find the culprit by retracting IP address through a friend of mine who is a techy.
But I hope my new post on 'Festival Of Colours' is spared.

Jo, I hope your finger is healed now. If time permits pls do visit my new post on 'Festival of colours'.

Trojan Gayle said...

My mother always said, if you have nothing good to say, say nothing.

People need to grow up and be better as life is way too short to be angry at people...enjoy life and enjoy the difference that we all have... have a great day everyone!

Maike said...

Don't worry. Many people like your blog and of course, there are always people who will envy you - maybe just because their blog has not made it to a "blog of note".

Michelle P. said...

Interesting is the fact that these people are so coward that they aren't able to reveal their identity. This person could be doing something else but instead, the person is reading your blog. I believe you have a fan. When we don't like something we don't even waste our time reading it, right?

Love and hate are two close feelings. All people who insult you admire you, envy you, deep inside or they wouldn't react.

Nobody can be indifferent about you, your blog is fabulous.

Wenderina said...

My opinion on anonymous posting as the same opinion I hold for people who complain incessantly about what is on TV. Turn it off. Don't go to the blog. If you hate it, disagree with it, it makes you sick, don't participate! Silent abstention is the classy way to go.

HaS the Turtle said...

I completely agree with you
don't change a thing
your blog is very interesting and intriguing if I must say so myself.

By the way I like your friends saying very virtuous :) take care

Patty Mooney said...

Well said. But you figure that Cyber Space is like a chunk of the world. You have so many followers and readers, a fraction of them are bound to be - well, irritating. It's their own problem. I guess it's their way of asking for attention. Apparently they were not taught the ways of loving, and that is very sad for them.

white crow said...

hey! thanx for yo writing, this writing helped me to understand something abt life and critics. well, i am never sure if i am right or those who criticize me are, i guess, considering and reconsidering are the best way. even the oscar winner films have to face the worst of some critics, so why should i be afraid to have my image all good and untainted until my conscience is working?? i have, i am and i shall always be taking them as another encouragement and god bless all those who take things in negative way.

Cezar and Léia said...

Hello!
Your blog is so cool!Congratulations!I have enjoyed reading your posts!
I agree with you about this one.I have some problems with "sad"unpolite comments in my blogs so that I decided to get moderation comments.

Furthermore you are a great writer and I wish you a wonderful weekend!Certainly I will be back!Thanks!
God bless you
Regards from Brazil and Luxembourg
Léia :-)

Paula Slade said...

It is sad that some folks choose to hide hateful and personal attacks behind the name A. Nonny Mouse. I too love and welcome a good debate and don't believe in censorship, but unfortunately I do approve comments for that very reason as well as spam. You are a gifted writer Jo, with a wonderful following of diverse voices!

AcuityTodos said...

I totally agree. I have had my share of negative attacks, and always by "Anonymous". I tried eliminating that option, only to have them create empty google accounts to continue their vitriol. It does say more about them than me, but it is also a pain!

Book pusher said...

Wow, i just had an anonymous comment, it was'nt to bad, they just wanted to make themselves feel superior by correcting my grammar, I have since blocked anonymous comments. That was my first unfriendly comment and my first anonymous one, it made me think of your post so I thought I would come back and say thanks for writing it.
I really enjoy your blog by the way. Thank you

marain said...

I think comment moderation has some advantages:

1. People can still post anonymously. Not everyone has a Blogger ID and allowing anonymous comments enables these people to comment.

2. You get a notification in the dashboard when there are comments to be moderated. I guess maybe this could be a disadvantage, though, if you're getting 40+ comments per post - you'd have to do a lot of admin to approve all the comments - but it can help you find and respond to new comments in old posts.

I've only ever rejected one comment - it was someone selling something for horses in response to my post about a long dead horse in reference to bipartisanship in the US Congress. I guess their web crawler was looking for the word "horse". Kinda funny, really.

I moderate because there are some crazies out there and I don't want them messing up my blog for even one second.

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