Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Sycophant or Sympathy

Image via deerlover via Flickr

Nearly everyone that has a blog or other site receives their share of nasty comments or hurtful responses. No matter what you are writing about or how popular your site may be everyone once in a while a troll is going to pop up.

I'm not saying that everything has to be sunshine and lollipops all the time. Frankly that would be boring. And as someone who likes a healthy debate, I don't want that. Everyone has different influences and interests, which is why I come on online and read their sites. I don't always agree with what people are saying but I respect their right to do so.

What confuses me is that I don't think everyone agrees with that. That is the only way that I can understand some of the comments I've seen flying around on sites. Sure, a large part of the "you're so fat/old/stupid/vain" comments are due to jealously. Those aren't what I'm thinking about though. They're a dime a dozen.

What actually surprised me the other day were comments I saw on Mademoiselle Robot's site. She posted a pretty harmless write up of how she was wearing some new trousers. And she looked, of course, adorable. But suddenly a detractor made a point of calling her egomaniacle and over done, etc., etc. She also decided to call the whole site and, I'm assuming, her readers "superficial and sycophantic." I'm assuming this was because we were complimenting MR's style.

I didn't think this had any basis in fact at all. As on many sites, Laƫtitia shares her adventures and her outfits. We like to read them because it is fun and we like her. Yes, we LIKE her. We don't worship her. We don't go out and buy everything she buys or dress just like her. We don't stalk her. We are, to a degree, friends.

I know it is hard to imagine being friends with someone you've never met in person. But I would say that many bloggers talk to their online friends everyday. I often talk to people I know from online more than I talk to some of my IRL friends. I've met some in person and some I haven't but that doesn't mean we like each other any less or that our friendships are less valid.

Any why is it "wrong" to compliment and admire another person's style and be happy for them? What does that say about the complainer? While I found the repeated returns to comment on the post a bit silly, I also found them a bit sad. I hope commenters like this have some great friends in real life. If they can afford to not have more, even if they are "just online", friends.

Personally, I can't and I like all these great writers, so I'll keep on with my "sucking up" comments!


ashe mischief said...

Wonderful thoughts on the topic, dear!

I do think that the comments in Tish's journal were uncalled for and unnecessary, and she's been taking them with great grace.

Dorie said...

I agree with this, and there was another similar post over at Kingdom of Style, and it's crazy the amount of negative comments some of the blogs I follow receive. It's almost scary, sort of like these people are just sitting around in their misery, trolling all the shiny happy blogs late at night and dripping their negativity all over the rest of us. Seriously, I don't get it. WHY are they reading if they don't "get" or are interested in the subject matter?? Anyways, great post Poochie!

lisa said...

Great post with a lot of thought-provoking points! I like healthy debate and discussion and I don't mind when people disagree with me as long as they make a well thought-out, on-topic point. Trolls, however--well, that's just something I won't tolerate, period.

M-L-E said...

Great post! I'm sure there's a ton of different ways bloggers can deal with these trolls.. they sure are annoying and don't add value.

WendyB said...

*Sigh* ... I think some people have such a pathetic need for attention that they'll take it anonymously, on the Internet, if that's all they can get.

Mademoiselle Robot said...

Just saw this actually, I am going to add it to my post :-)
THank you!

Mademoiselle Robot said...


Princess Poochie said...

Oh, Mmlle Robot! I DO want to be like you but you look so much more adorable that I would!


Jennifer Nicole said...

What a great post! I'm impressed at how you're able to call these troll-ish detracters out without being cruel or demeaning. Bravo!

In my opinion, there's a line between disagreeing with someone and being rude, just as there's a line between supporting someone and sucking up. I'm all about commenting on posts I think are great, even if that comment includes a little disagreement, to facilitate conversation. I take issue with those that comment just to be mean (and I also take issue with those that delete any comments that aren't 100% in agreement with the poster's view).

What's wrong with disagreeing? Nothing, so long as one is respectful while they do it.

Swell Vintage - Frankie said...

SPOT ON, Poochie! I like my online friends. I like that we're all different and have different styles. If I came across a blog I didn't like, I would simply not read it. Like you say, there are some very sad jealous people out there x

♥ fashion chalet said...

I think some find it a "game" because they can be 'anonymous' while being nasty. Yet, I highly doubt they'd have the gall or confidence to say the same nasty things in person to anybody. As Teen Vogue once reported, mean girls are going farther than just the classroom, they're now online. Silly. Keep it up. Great blog! :)


Anonymous said...

Nice post! And I really like your blog! You have great taste...and your shoes...I Want!! Anyway, I don´t understand those people, too. To me, blogs are like diaries- they are about the person who write them and are deeply personal. One would never criticize a diary, would one? There are some fashion blogs on the internet that, in fact, convey a certain self-indulgence. i don´t like that, and I don´t visit those again- because I don´t have to. Keep up the work and just stay like you are!