I remember the first time it happened to me: I was recovering from surgery, stuck on the couch, hopped up on pain pills and crying because, well, that’s what pain pills do to me.
See also: abdominal muscles are ACTUALLY pretty important.
See also also: humiliation when you suddenly cannot pee by yourself because standing up hurts like a motherfucker.
I’d stupidly written a post about my struggles with weight and although I hadn’t titled the piece “Being Fat Made Me Invisible,” (which was what the site owner went with) the post was fairly heartfelt.
Now Pranksters, if you learn NOTHING from Your Aunt Becky (besides, “it’s always better not to be Aunt Becky.”) learn this: The Internet has lots of opinions about weight. And people can be cruel.
Anyway, someone got chocolate salty balls about my post – in which I was talking about my OWN struggles with weight, not telling the world to drop a couple LBS – and left a fairly hurtful comment. The pain pills exacerbated my hurt feelers and suddenly I was weeping about the comment. It was just so…mean.
And what’s worse? I couldn’t do shit about it.
On my own blog, I have no shame in deleting a particularly cruel comment. I don’t get them often, but you know what? I don’t need you to take a shit on my nicely swept porch. I know this is a hotly debated piece of the Internet (should you delete nasty comments?) but I, for one, have no shame in using the delete button. Go ahead and talk about how much I suck somewhere else, y’all. My front porch doesn’t need your shit slung on it.
It may surprise you, Pranksters, that I freelance around The Internet.
I also Site Master.
See: Band Back Together.
See also: Mushroom Printing.
The comments on either site are moderated, although, Band Back Together has a more strict set of moderation requirements, because people are pouring out their hearts; the least I can do is protect them from well-meaning-yet-unkind shit.
And recently, on my freelancing posts, the comments I’ve received have become particularly unkind. The sort that make you gasp and feel like you got punched in the gut. Because while you can laugh that shit off some of the time, sometimes, it really, really stings.
When you’re writing about your life – it’s still your life.
Being blasted for it sucks. Period. I don’t know how you’d handle it beyond doing what I do: ignore them. I do not read a single comment from those posts. I don’t need to know how badly I suck at life from Internet Mole People, especially considering my personal blog is an homage to my suckitude.
However, I got to thinking about it.
(I can think sometimes)
And I genuinely believe that site owners – the sites that aren’t courting controversy – have a responsibility to their writers. Some sort of, “I got your back,” where negative comments are policed and removed. Because frankly, one less Internet Mole Person makes the world a better place.
How fair is it to let your staff get shit on so you can increase your comment count? Doesn’t the person who has the ability to write in non-text speak and know the difference between “there” and “they’re” matter a little bit more than someone flinging shit for the sole purpose of cruelty?
I say, yes.
Now, what do you say, Pranksters?
Should site owners protect their writers?