I got 99 problems but the troll ain’t one

Anyone who blogs would know the thrill of an email in your inbox showing that someone has commented on your blog. I remember the thrill of my very first non family member comment and it certainly spurred me on to keep writing, and keep growing and building an audience for my little space of the cyber world. It still hasn’t changed for me, even though I get a whole lot more comments these days than I used to. I’m still humbled that people take time out of their day to read what I have to say, and take the time to comment. It never fails to impress me I must say and it’s one of my favourite parts of blogging – the connecting and the conversation.

On the flip side there has been many a time that a comment fills me with dread and makes me feel physically sick. How many times have we checked our email in the passenger seat of the car, en route to a family occasion, or when you are out and about with the kids? Of course I shouldn’t be doing that, but I do, and find it hard to not check my blog many times a day. I just do. I’ve ruined plenty of moments that shouldn’t have been from getting a comment alert email and getting a nasty comment from someone and instantly had my day ruined. Of course that’s entirely my own fault for not separating the online world with the real world but it’s impossible not to be hurt when someone spits out something purposely hurtful and nasty to you.

It’s been almost 2 months now since I started to moderate the comments on my blog. This just means that when someone makes a comment on a post that it goes to an queue, sitting there, waiting for me to check it before it is published. On my own time. Directed by ME. When it suits ME. I am all for freedom of speech and difference in opinion, I am not, however, EVER going to have someone hurl abuse at me for no constructive reason at all. It took me a long time to come around to this idea, but now that I have? Well, it’s been SO liberating.

Now? My inbox is filled with emails. From real people. That have attached a name to themselves. I can put my big girl pants on before I head over to the comment queue and prepare myself for whatever will be on there. Oh and they are still there of course. I have control over what goes on my blog. Things cannot get away from me. People don’t have to defend me. Arguments can’t happen between people on my blog without my knowing about them. My space. My rules. Simple really isn’t it? It applies in my own home so why should my blog be any different?

I’m not sure why I was so hesitant to make the change. I’m not sure why I made myself sick with worry about it for such a long time before finally taking some control. I suppose old habits die hard when it comes to blogging – I’ll take any readers I can – good or bad and after all a comment is a comment. Right? Not for me. Not any more. All their venom, vitriol, hatred and spite can sit very happily in that queue, waiting there, never seeing the light of day. And as I said, this doesn’t mean that if someone has a difference of opinion, that I will delete and scream TROLL! I won’t. But just as I wouldn’t accept an attack in person (nor would anyone really go through with that without the freedom on the anonymous comment option behind the safety of their computer at home), I’m no longer accepting it on my blog.

And it’s just about the best decision I have ever made when it comes to BabyMac and my blogging.

Today I’m linking up with Nikki for her Blogging tips on a Saturday. When it comes to blogging, no one gets more professional, knowledgeable or willing to share than Nikki. She is the boss, and each week on a Saturday she specialises on blogging tips. Today I thought I’d share a little something I’ve worked out. Head on over and check them out!

Comments

  1. Good on you Beth. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m always amazed that people can be bothered being so horrible, so exhausting and ridiculous. I don’t even think you should give even one second of worry to the whole questio of whether you should moderate comments, I think everyone should!! I would definitely do that if I had a blog, without question.

  2. God on you Bev. PS Some people are weird x

  3. Thanks so much Beth for sharing this post. As you know I’m all for taking control of your space and your community. Love your work long time x

  4. Some people just have waaaaaay too much time on their hands. It frightens me that some of these nasty spiteful trolls are raising the next generation :(
    X to you :)

  5. I really enjoy your blog each day. I agree you should moderate comments, if people don’t like what they read anywhere they should just move on.

  6. Excellent stuff. I am impressed!

  7. God love ya Beth. Not only because your a champion blogger with consideration & fortitude of your convictions – but regularly, you are my one & ONLY commenter on my blog (not even family bother!) – it’s so appreciated.

    Bless.

    Gabs x

    • Hi, went to have a look on your site (so maybe you can have another commenter!) and it warned me that it contained malware and could harm my computer. Just thought you might want to know :)

    • Malware, me? NEVER!

      ;)

      Thanks for letting me know Becci. Will look into it.
      And special thanks to all who came to visit after my blatant sob story but actual gratitude to Beth for being such a tops chick.
      Lots love to you all.
      Gabs x

  8. I have only just been game enough to blog….my techie bro set it up…. He did comment mod straight up although that has not stopped the crazies getting to my email! I have had very little comments…. Might have something to do with slack blogging…..

  9. I can’t for the life of me understand why anyone would send you a nasty message. As I reader, I perceive you to be a person who, despite the challenges that life throws at you from time to time, loves her life. I find that inspiring, which is why I read your blog. Perhaps it creates feelings of inadequacy in others, hence troll messages. Anna xoxox

  10. Good on you, you hit the nail on the head – you wouldn’t allow those kind of attacks in your own home or in person so why should you accept them on your blog. And yes, your blog your rules! I don’t understand why people feel the need to be so nasty sometimes, but you know as well as I do that it is more of a reflection on them than you – little consolation when you read their vitriol. If they don’t like what you write they should just simply stop reading and go do something else. Love your blog!

  11. I must be so innocent/dumb, I just do not understand why anyone would write something mean. I understand a difference of opinion, but what ever happened to the old fashion saying “if you don’t have something nice to say, then don’t say it”? It’s a blog people, if you don’t like it… don’t read it.

    http://iliska-dreams.blogspot.com.au/

  12. Good on you, Beth. I don’t necessarily agree with the ‘my space my rules’ approach to blogging, but I support whatever you’ve gotta do to keep the haters in their little box.

    I’ve never used the ‘email’ comment option. That way, it’s not so distracting. I can go in and read my comments at certain times each day. Just a thought…

  13. Totally the right way to go….

  14. I like it Beth. Don’t take no one’s crap. There is a difference between stating your opinion and being an asshole about it.

  15. Your space, your rules! Fair cop!
    I only started the blogging a year ago-ish and have to say the blog community is beyond my expectations in terms of friendly, helpful and astonishingly supportive when the universe throws you a monster.
    So far, no trolls!

  16. Sing it, sister! I can’t understand the mindset of people who write nasty things on other people’s blogs. It’s very bad form and dare I go all Downton on you and say that it only speaks to their breeding! (I’ve just watched the first ep of Season 3 and OMG, it was so good!)

    No-one’s forcing these people to read, so why bother saying something nasty? Way to take control, hon x

  17. Good on you. When I started my blog, I was hesitant about allowing comments at all, but when I saw I could control that aspect, I moderated them. I always have & always will. Your blog is your little patch of internet land. You’re the boss!

  18. I agree with Anna. Your blog must stir feelings of inadequacy and jealousy in the haters. Not to mention the cowardice of posting anonymously.

    If you can’t say something nice. Don’t say it at all.

    Support other mothers, build them up. Especially those brave enough to share themselves on a blog.

    I love your blog. I love your generous spirit. And having met you recently for some real mum advice think you’re the bees knees for going out of your way to help a stranger.

    More power to you.

    Xx

  19. I just started blogging after years of commenting on Mamamia, so I put a lot of thought into whether I should let randoms into my life on the internet. (to tell the truth I was really scared of trolls too).

    Premoderated comments seem to be working for MM. So I think if you have a big audience, it is a must to keep the nasty comments away from your little space.

    I don’t have a problem as my little blog is really new and I don’t have too many posts on there yet. Good on you Beth!

  20. Just starting out myself this is really sound advice. I’m going to take it on board and thank you for sharing your experiences. It’s hard to know who’s reading your blog firstly, then to have nastiness thrown at you when you put yourself out there is just unfair. I love reading your blog. Being a stay at home mum with miss two and preg’ again it’s a great way to read while trying to frantically get everything done. I really wish people would think before throwing their issues your way.
    You’re doing a great job!

    [email protected]

  21. More power to you! I totally agree with ‘your blog, your rules’ and love coming to read each day knowing it is a friendly space :-)
    Wendy

  22. Thanks for doing what you do. I love checking my email and there being a new blog to read. Its like looking amongst the bills and finding a hand written letter in the mail box. I love reading about your world.

  23. Absolutely. Totally. Agree! Energetically, your blog is like your home crossed with your child – and you would never let anyone hurl abuse in or at either of those precious things.

  24. Good for you. I totally get that.
    What I don’t get is people who have the time, energy and inclination to be so nasty. Sure there are times I’ve read a blog that I don’t like, it’s far easier to move on to the next one than write something venomous! It seems it happens a lot though.
    Keep doing what you’re doing as you have far more lovers than haters. X

  25. Your blog, your rules. Totally agree Beth. :)

  26. I have to agree that people can be nasty, they are most likely jelous to be honest. Good on you for doing it your way though. X

  27. Excellent lady! I actually thought you had put up with way too much for way too long… probably because you have strength of character, something a lot of people do not have. And I will still stand by the old ‘if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all’ ideology. Power to you my friend xo

  28. No, I agree with this whole-HEARTEDLY.

    Couldn’t agree more.

    Just like you’d show someone the door if they insulted you at a dinner party you threw for them, so too should we be able to usher them away from our blog by blocking any hate-filled comments.

    The thing I hate the most about them is that they then cause everyone to focus on that, over the actual post itself.

    Dave found this incredible picture on pinterest (I know?! what guy searched pinterest?!?!) – it just says, ‘you sir, are a cu*t’.

    He suggested I e-mail it to anyone who trolls, lol.

    I decided not to. And moderate comments now instead :)

    Much better option,

    All power to you Beth! x

  29. Thanks for the post, this is something I have been thinking about and you have perfectly summed up the two reasons. Trolls and to stop me checking my bog at innapropriate times and provide more structure and order to my day.

    Love the heading for this post too, I read the whole thing with a Jay Z voiceover, you should of Vlog rapped this post :)

  30. Well done Beth. I’m sick to the back teeth of people being hurtful just because they can be on the Internet. I love a good debate, but argue the issues people, don’t launch character assassinations because you disagree with someone. As a wise woman once wrote “keep yourselves pretty” !

  31. Good for you!

  32. Anonymous says:

    Smart move! your blog = your rules!

  33. I got trolled a few months into my new blog… it was awful. Someone took about half an hour out of their day to write a short novel about everything I am doing wrong as a wife and as a mother. Way to ruin a day!! I don’t let stuff like that go public.

    What’s the use in spreading the hate?

    Power to ya!

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