If It Don’t Apply, Let It Fly!
In Internet slang, a troll is someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room or blog, with intent of provoking readers into an emotional response just to disrupt normal on-topic discussion.
“Never wrestle with a pig. You both get dirty, but the pig likes it.” This George Bernard Shaw quote was the advice given to be by one of my oldest and dearest friends, Pundit Rachel Campos-Duffy. After being on a reality TV Show, host of ABC’s “The View” and up against heavy crossfire on many political programs, she ought to know.
I consider myself a positive, loving and easy-going person who often goes out of the way to help others. But sometimes, crap gets to me. I am only human. Imagine anyone reading this has been in the same boots. When I worked in Radio, and I mean any station I ever worked at, listeners never held back what they thought of us when they called in. That never bothered me, but seeing it written, in an environment I have built, and work so hard to curate, really gets to me, sometimes. As with all lives learning lessons, what can you take away from being the object of a “trolls” desire?
One of the most obvious things anyone can do, is IGNORE, and realize that a “troll” has a sole purpose of trying to get attention. They don’t seem to discriminate between bad, or good attention. They just want people to look at them. Kind of like a peacock during its mating ritual. The male displays his colorful feathers then calls out loudly to the female (peahen), he does a funky dance, and if she’s into it, they mate. Peacocking from the Urban Dictionary also means dressing for attention, referring to how Peacock’s display their vibrant feathers to attract a mate.
On-air, online and in real time, we pass along our opinions, experience and craft practices to others. It often feels like certain types of people look for the little cracks and crevices in your persona, or things you have worked hard for, and they creep into your world only to try to smack you with a ball peen hammer just to make themselves feel bigger.
There is no EXACTLY right way to handle this situation. In working with several high-profile personalities, and continuously seeing people say mean and, quite often, unwarranted things to each other, it just bums me out. It is my belief that if you have not walked in someone else’s shoes, how do you feel justified to criticize or even judge them? Don’t misunderstand; there are societal wrongs that we can all agree on (but that would be a WHOLE other post).
I just don’t get why people bring their garbage online and go on a mission to hurt others or try to sabotage things others have worked hard to build. Almost every other day *if not several times a day* I see a friend who is experiencing some sort of turmoil over negative and often invalid words said to them by someone else. I even get crazy, and mean things said to me. Clients get told they can’t act, sing, create or they’re stupid … horrific, nasty, derogatory mentions. I really have no idea what compels someone to want to rain down hate on someone else’s parade??
I always try to remember, “if it don’t apply, let it fly,” PERIOD. Sometimes you just got to hit block, and report. All of the platforms have amazing help centers where you can report when you are being harassed.
Now if you are getting the same criticism over and over again, and it really bothers you, maybe you should look at it, however there are just people out there who are happy being peacocks, pigs and trolls.
How do you protect yourself or the communities you participate in from bully’s, trolls and/or disruptive forces online?
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