1. said:

    I’ve written a few articles in my time and it’s important to “weed out” those that have a valid point, whether you agree with it or not and those contributors that just want to say something controversial or just provoke a reaction. It’s difficult to keep your hands away from the keyboard if someone really riles you but in the long term, not reacting is the best course of action – no matter how tempting it is!

  2. Dave Balbas said:

    It’s an unfortunate by-product of the cyber world we live in. These people can launch tirades and personal attacks they would never consider in a face-to-face meeting. It just goes to show that lack of class knows no boundaries.

  3. Benjamin said:

    This is a great article. I have had a recent incident with the “help” forum on Craigslist. I found the people who I was looking to for advice were only interested in proclaiming their personal feelings about a job positng. When I complimented one of them for responding in a respectful manner he even turned on me with rude reply. I just don’t understand what the point is. If you want to voice your oppinion that is fine but do it in a respectful and respectable manner.

  4. Brett Hoffman said:

    People just forgot how to agree to disagree. Some minds are not going to be changed and making spiteful comments is not going to win them over. It is easier to cut people down when they express a differing viewpoint than it is to address the points where logic breaks down.
    Social media also provides an autonomous platform where the commenter is out of reach of the person that they’re sending a message to. The unlikelihood of ever coming into contact with the other individual creates a sense of security freeing the person to make comments that they’d never say to the other persons face. The impersonal nature of electronic communications make it easy to forget that there’s another human being on the other end to receive it.

  5. Kelly McGuire said:

    Agreed. If you don’t have something constructive to contribute, don’t comment. It is a waste of time for everyone.

  6. said:

    Ah Chris, you are a man after my own heart! I find it disappointing that so many find the false “anonymity” of the internet an opportunity to speak and act in ways that they would never dream of displaying face-to-face. I also find it disheartening that there seems to be such a shift in the understanding of discussion and debate from reasoned discourse and exchange of ideas – even directly oppositional ones – to personal attacks, verbal abuse and violent disagreement.
    There is nothing I enjoy more than a spirited conversation, stimulating debate and the opportunity to learn or understand something in a new light. Here’s to the internet teaching those skills, and, perhaps creating a social discourse that is actually uplifting and innovative.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts Chris!

  7. I fully agree with what you have written here. Being anonymous is somehow seen as a reason to not be civil. Or worse, being anonymous is seen as permission to be nasty. Like anyone who writes and posts a lot, I’ve had my fair share of attacks. But I learned to be quiet in response to those attacks because what the posters are looking for is simply attention.

    Thanks for posting this.

  8. joseph waddle said:

    I often ask myself before hitting send… “Self”:-)), “would you say this in person” ? This would solve most of that problem. Be Good Humans

  9. said:

    Very good article Chris. The “trolls” will needle at you and keep it up until they get you going. They have nothing better to do, I’m convinced of that.

    Sometimes, I’ve given in to the trolls (I gave in more when I first started social media and much less now). One thing tha is certain, if you feed a troll, they’ll keep coming back to get more food anytime they are hungry. The best thing I’ve found is to stop feeding the trolls and they will quit coming back to eat…



  10. Pete Butler said:

    I couldn’t agree more. Like you, I have received very personal attacks (on Linkedin) in some business valuation discussion boards by one person specifically. I posted some thoughts related to a new way of looking at a private company’s cost of capital. Like you, I recognize that the naysayer feels very threatened by the approach as he has a “competing” method available for our peers to use.
    Rather than debate the merits of the two techniques, he stoops to calling me names. He obviously is finding change to be hard!

    I have actually found his lunatic rants pretty amusing… and sad. Amazingly, I do not believe that he even thinks that he is harming his reputation to be saying such childish things in print.

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