A musing hmmm

Over the past couple of months I’ve noticed an increase in the questionable comment on the blogs I read. Some of them are downright nasty and are unambiguous in that nastiness. These are easy to deal with by DEL-ing them.  But sometimes a comment or series of comments are borderline. The question is how do you tell if they are wrong un’s.  I’ve mentioned before there’s been a noticeable change since the semi-professional bloggers have gone into whatever garret will help them write the Great Novel. And the political bloggers with a hair gone wrong seem to have sated themselves since Obama became POTUS. But there was a time there when you couldn’t comment with a leftish slant on a right-wing blog and as to writing anything right tilting on a left leaning publication you were likely followed home and have your inbox spammed to death; sometimes by both sides. These days the Rep’s in the USA are girding their loins, what for I’m not so certain, but a girding they are a-going. No one, even the most optimistic within that party believes other than all the efforts and cash might as well be burned so unrealistic the chances of a win. Anyway, if the temperature of the blogs is anything to go by, barring something catastrophically unforeseen Obama is there for another term.  Here I must nail a colour to a mast. I think that the Dem’s running Obama was a crime against logical politics. I think he was inserted by a cadre of profoundly feudalistic ‘generals’ at the top reaches of that party. And for no other reason than getting a black man within the walls of the W.H. If they had any interests in the wider Dem family they would have found a placeman and run their agenda in all three houses for a 15 year generation. Idiots. So the politicos are not out hunting in large numbers; yet anyway.

I tend to a triage when dealing with comments. The nasty are gone. But if about the content in the post or referring to something within the general aether then you’re good to go. Your basic ‘play the ball not the man’ rule. If you disagree, say so, strongly. But if I decide a comment is bullying it’s gone. I view blogs in that way also. Gone are the days when I will put up with reading some truly nasty blog for the sake of the quality of its writing. Sometimes, actually mostly, you get more good from a blog that isn’t polished to a brittle gloss, but has a good narrative. And sometimes a blog isn’t what it says on the tin and a comment following the ethos can backfire spectacularly. I commented once on a blog about a wedding photo that I thought was lifted from internet. And it turned out the blogger was at this wedding and the bride really bedecked her maids in black. Ooops. In my defence she did say that the blog was mostly fiction.

I will not tolerate any attack on a persons religion or lack thereof. Nor will I read anyone’s blog that cuts in that direction once I’ve ascertained that that’s the way the wind blows. However, a little bit of national chauvinism is good for you. Provided its in good part, and all are in on the joke. But if you get all serious about the Coke versus Pepsi question. Just go away. If you want to argue the symbolism then well and good. There are German propaganda woodcuts from the 1570 to the 1650s that are bound to have some connections.

You’d imagine then there would be no need to hit the spam button. Well, actually you’d be surprised.

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20 Responses to A musing hmmm

  1. Kimberly says:

    I’ve come back to this post a couple of times to reply, but felt the need to formulate a thoughtful comment beyond, “ya, I agree” to a very thoughtful post. Being inconsiderate of others seems to be the norm of behaviors these days, and not just in the blog world. Watching how some people behave in public is embarrassing. It does seem though that one’s behavior can become downright nasty behind the protection of a computer screen doesn’t it? A week or so ago, I read an op about public education in California. It was written by a journalist in Pasadena who explained why he sent his kids to and supported public education. It was a very nice and rare article. Then I (mistakenly) read the 7 pages of comments that followed. I was appalled. The commenters who didn’t agree with his position didn’t support their ideas in a rational manner, or at all for that matter. Instead they lambasted the guy, calling him names. When did that become ok? When did having different opinions give someone the right to be cruel? It would never occur to me to leave a malicious comment on a blog or article that I didn’t agree with. Not coming back to that site again is a far stronger statement and also a more civil one.
    The democrats are notorious for not having a backbone and not acting when they have an advantage. I’m having a hard time making a decision on Obama. He talks like a dem, but mostly acts like a rep. However, it has been said that the Presidency is a ticket to the middle no matter who it is. I do like listening to him speak though as he sounds intelligent. Much of the debates on the other side (and there have been a lot) aren’t quite as intellectual as I would like.
    As far as the cola wars…duh, Coke wins by a landslide. 😉

    • Vince says:

      Yes, I think you’ve hit it with ‘malicious’. It is that strong is it not. And it’s the key really, for you can divine nasty when the intent isn’t that at all. There can be misunderstanding.

      • Kimberly says:

        The tone of a statement is very hard to read in type, that’s for sure. I often ask myself (more with work emails but sometimes with comments), “Wait was that meant to be snarky?”. Maybe how one responds to others via technology should be added to the curriculum at school. We’ve had to do Internet safety, so wouldn’t this be the next step? Maybe the course could be called How to Respond Online Without Sounding Apathetic or Like an Ass! 🙂
        This was a great post!

        • Vince says:

          Thanks for that.
          And you are correct, it is notoriously hard to draw meaning from some. The emoticons are one of the reasons I like WordPress. They really help.
          You will need something more snappy for your course than HoROWSAoLA. Lextext ?.

  2. Michele says:

    Commenting can be tricky. I try to be concise and on-point without being nasty because really the world can be nasty enough.

    • Vince says:

      Hmm, welllll, yeeees. But terseness can be taken as passive aggressive. Or worse a backhand clatter. ‘Spose it’s how long is a hug.

  3. sage says:

    It shouldn’t be this way, but it seems its easier to be an ass than to be kind. Maybe that’s the consequence of original sin. And, just for the record, both Coke and Pepsi will rot your teeth. 🙂

    • Vince says:

      Yeah but kindness can be mawkish too. And that is insulting, or can be. How many comments do you read that are glad handing aren’t ya a great fellow I have my signature done out with one of those stamp things, taking no cognisance of the efforts involved.
      I think it can be kind to take the effort to form an opinion, be that counter or otherwise.
      But there is a difference, like that one that arrived on yours the other week. That was just automated scum.

  4. R. Sherman says:

    Good comment philosophy. As you know, I’ve had to deal with a particularly nasty troll for the last month. The comments were not disagreements but personal attacks with extra nastiness thrown in. Those I will not abide.

    As for Obama, the problem is that the Democrats abandoned the Middle in favor of the Far Left wing of the party. Over the years, the grown-ups got pushed out, i.e. Sam Nunn, Bob Kerrey, and others, leaving us with the motley crew we have now. They forgot the rule: Play to the base to get nominated and pivot to the middle to get elected and stay in the middle to get reelected. It’s the third part they forgot.

    And I say that having been a Democrat for a long time. I didn’t stop paying my dues and working for candidates until 2003.

    Cheers.

    • Vince says:

      Yeah, it was the attack on you and Jeff that caused me to think on this. But there are lots more.

      But the Dem’s far left aren’t left in the political sense or even with class, only in the social. And that mostly means Roe v Wade. How did they not think in the 80s that they would lose a huge tranche of the Catholic vote in the northern cities and even more votes in the southern States.

      Given where you came from in the mountains. I thought it would be a good bet you were Democrat in your DNA, but I thought you might have moved and started kicking with the other foot. Or at the very least both feet.

      • R. Sherman says:

        Oh, I was a Dem until this century. The party left me, not I, it. I can’t bring myself to embrace the ‘Pubs, given that I proudly claim the honor of the “Evil Eye” from John Ashcroft himself.

        Missouri is weird place. Democrats who are pro-gun, anti-abortion, fiscally conservative voters in State elections, who then pivot to ‘Pubs in national ones. Perhaps that’s why candidates from both parties spend so much time here relative to our electoral power.

        Cheers.

  5. Ed says:

    I used to read and write on political blogs all the time but gave up. Both sides are so entrenched in their rhetoric that they only read comments to see if you are “with them or against them”. Instead, I have chosen to read bloggers, like yourself, who mostly write about other things but occasional dabble into politics. Those bloggers seem to be more free thinkers and willing to think outside of the political party box.

  6. Kelly says:

    I rarely comment on political posts, in part because I don’t debate well, and in part because I’m easily disgusted by most things political… and, I’m more conservative than most of the bloggers I read. That said, I firmly believe everyone is entitled to their opinion and I hate judgementalness (if that’s a word).

    One thing I have learned in this global world of blogging is how often things don’t always translate well between various cultures and regions. I’ve definitely had some of the things I’ve written about taken the wrong way.

    Hmmm…now you have me wondering if my comments are too shallow or vapid.

    • Vince says:

      Ed sorta says it above. Political blogs are mostly ugly affairs. Ugly because they smother debate. But also they see their mission to attempt to destroy debate elsewhere.

      LOL, there are times when between cultures you could begin a war with errors in translation.

      And your comments are grand. My point above was should you profoundly disagree then don’t worry about me reading it as bad manners. If you can open my argument up like a blade across the stitching on a bag of animal feed, well and good. But if you can do it with your fingers I’ll be impressed.

  7. Crystal says:

    When I first started blogging I had the most hurtful comments to respond to. Most of them anonymous, of course. Cowards. Cruel cowards. I was harassed for quite sometime. I don’t know if the bullies got tired of me and moved on to someone else or drowned in a lake of fire and brimstone but lately I’ve had the more pleasant people comment on my posts. You included! 🙂

    • Vince says:

      Oh I would never allow that type of nihilist worry me if I were you. I know it’s difficult to see such bile directed towards oneself, but never allow them into your head.
      I’ve had people mail me attempting to cut another commenter. I’ll not have that rubbish.

  8. Rebecca S. says:

    I’m almost afraid to leave a comment now 🙂

    I’ve never had a spam-worthy comment…my blog must be pretty tame!

    I have a friend who used to entertain himself by reading and commenting on the Fox news site. He thought it good to read how the ‘other half’ think. He was pretty horrified at the things people were willing to throw at each other over the internet.

  9. Guy Kawasaki had a blunt post up – it is the blogger’s responsibility to clear away nasty comments. He said – I won’t swim in your pool if there are %%$#s in it.

    That is what mystifies me – why the blog host/ess doesn’t just delete crappy comments. Why this feeing that the comment, if in doubt, must stay?

    I frequent read good, thoughtfully written, finely crafted posts – followed as Kimberly said in your first comment – by a string of stupid abusive comments. Feels to me like bad housekeeping on the blogger’s side.

    (came via Fields of Gold in NZ)

    • Vince says:

      With me it must stay because what is a perfectly reasonable comment in Natal might cause profound offence in Stellenbosch. So if you edit to that extent you may as well turn off the comment box altogether for where is the end of it.

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