Blog Talk Tuesdays: Part V

Hello and Happy Blog Talk Tuesdays, friends.

We are officially on week five of this series. Dang!

Past Blog Talk Tuesdays topics have included: 

Today’s post was inspired by the presentation I did with three fellow bloggers at the Healthy Living Summit last weekend about handling negativity in the blog world. We crafted our presentation based on the responses we received to the survey we posted on all of our blogs a couple of weeks ago.

I am using some of those questions as well as the questions I received from you guys in the comments section of the blog and through emails for this post.

Rising Above Negativity in the Blog World

  • Where does a blogger experience negativity?

i don;t know

When I first began blogging, I assumed the only place a blogger experiences negativity is in the comments section of their posts. Wrong! In the nearly two years that I have been blogging, I’ve seen or heard of negativity in the form of blog comments, tweets, emails, magazine articles and blog posts by other bloggers to name a few.

Also, I know many bloggers have experienced negativity off the blog in their personal lives from family members, friends, colleagues or peers who don’t support or understand blogging.

  • What do you do about negativity outside your own blog?

I know of bloggers have experienced extreme negativity outside their blog – though Twitter, magazine articles and blog posts by other bloggers. This can be very hard to handle since it’s not in your own space where you can defend yourself openly for people to see your side.

I personally have a hard time understanding how people have such anger inside about bloggers and basically make a hobby out of saying mean and hurtful things about other people. It reminds me of high school drama and the group of girls who loved making other people feel inadequate and bullied.

If I read a blog and realize I don’t like it, I won’t read it again. Why continue reading something that makes you annoyed or angry… or a blog that simply doesn’t interest you?

That being said, there have been blogs out there that I used to read that seem to pick apart bloggers all the time. I used to read these blogs (they’re like a car accident – you can’t look away), but eventually I realized that I never left their blog feeling happy or uplifted. I felt sad and upset.

I unsubscribed from these blogs in my Google Reader and try my best to never read them. (This is not referring to blogs that exist to try to help bloggers improve their blogs by giving general examples.)

  • How do you handle negative comments?

sadie hater blockers

It depends on the comment.

For the most part, I tend to ignore negative comments because many people who say nasty things are just trying to get under your skin. I rarely delete comments but I am 100 percent supportive of bloggers who do. It’s your blog and your space and you deserve to delete comments that you feel are inappropriate. Comments that are wildly profane or inappropriate or those that attack loved ones will always be deleted.

Note: There is a ginormous difference between a negative (evil!) comment and constructive (polite!) criticism. Most bloggers I know understand the difference and welcome polite differences of opinion or criticism, but blatant attacks on a blogger are a whole separate beast.

  • Do you find it hard not to respond “in kind” to a mean commenter? I think it would be so hard not to tell them off!

Oh gosh, yes. I was a public relations major in college and I always say that studying PR helped me more in blogging than any of my other jobs after college. When someone says “I hate you, you’re ugly” or something of the sort, I would love to say “Well aren’t you a peach?” and then go kick them in the shins, but then aren’t I just perpetuating the negativity?

I don’t want to see a fight break out in the comments section of my post and prefer to simply let it go or respond in a way that is both polite and compassionate.

poo vizsla

That being said, if a negative comment comes from someone who is not anonymous, I will send them a personal email to ask if I did something to offend or hurt them in any way.

This has only happened once since basically all negative comments are anonymous (shocking!), but I have been able to find contact information by being sneaky and locating a commenter’s personal blog or accurate email address by searching for their IP address (a unique number connected to every computer) on the back end of my blog. This brings up all comments they’ve ever left on my blog – both positive comments that were not anonymous and the negative ones that were.

ip address look up

Many times bloggers know exactly who leaves a negative comment on their blog.

For more detailed instructions about the techy side of negative comments (looking up IP addresses, moderating and blocking negative comments), definitely check out Healthy Living Blogs this upcoming Thursday where you will find the full tutorial from our presentation posted.

  • How you you remain positive after a negative comment?

sadie negativity

When I received my first truly evil comment, I was upset for days. There have even been times when the nastiness of a comment has made me question whether or not I wanted to continue blogging.

I had what I’ll call a “negative comment epiphany” about a year into blogging. One negative commenter (anonymous, of course) commented on my blog when Ryan was away on his bachelor cruise (and therefore unreachable). She said something along the lines of “Just wanted to let you know I saw Ryan kissing a brunette girl the other day. Just thought you should know!”

Um, what!?

I didn’t question the validity of the comment because Ryan and I have a secure relationship and haven’t had any trust issues, but I did feel angry! Why would anyone want to sabotage my personal relationship?

I looked up the commenter’s IP address and found that she lived in Michigan (a state Ryan has never been to) and eventually I found her personal blog because she had left previous comments on my blog that were not anonymous.

When I discovered her blog, I went from angry to sad. The woman had a lot of personal issues and some serious negativity in her own life.

It was an eye opening experience for me because it made me realize that many times the negative comments people leave on blogs have nothing to do with the blogger. The commenter is often dealing with personal demons or bad things on their end and the blogger becomes an easy target for negativity.

That being said, I don’t use this train of thought to excuse myself from negative comments. Ryan’s mom said something to me the other week that I will never forget: “If you find yourself becoming defensive about something, maybe it’s because you have something to be defensive about.”

So true.

Negative comments that are totally ludicrous roll right off my back. A comment that makes me immediately become defensive makes me wonder if there’s some truth behind it. It’s then that I’ll go to my family and friends  – those who know me better than anyone – and ask if they feel the same way.

***

And now, after all this Debbie Downer talk, I leave you with this happy picture of puppy Sadie to make you smile. Smile 

vizsla puppy

Questions of the Day

  • Bloggers: Have you ever received a negative comment? How did you deal with it?
  • Readers: How you you deal with negativity in your day-to-day life?

Comments

  1. says

    Everything you said is so true. I’ve only been blogging for a little over 2 months, but have definitely questioned myself– “do I want people to read that? Would they judge me or hold it against me?” But I’ve realized the people who I care about are going to give me support and the people who I don’t know are the ones who would criticize me.

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  2. says

    Although I haven’t experienced much negativity on my blog, I hope that if I ever do, I will handle it with the grace that you do. Is it odd that part of me actually thinks I’ll be excited that someone cared enough to be rude or mean? Haha 🙂

    Just like in life, you gotta brush off the haters! Great tips!

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  3. says

    Though I have yet to receive a negative comment (knock on wood), I imagine that I’d try to ignore it a la Heather’s whole “your blog is your castle” style. No one should storm the castle without your permission. I’ll just have the guards (aka the delete button) throw them out!

    When I was younger (in college), I received a really hateful facebook message from a guy I thought was pretty cool, though, and even after deleting it and blocking him, I’ll admit that just thinking about it 5 years later hurts. Why people are ever just cruel without reason is beyond me, but luckily there are enough beautiful, kind, loving people in this world to block out most of the haters. And, for the rest, there’s Baby Sadie pics.

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  4. Baking N Books says

    A great post. I’ll bookmark it to read more thoroughly as it’s a difficult subject. Especially the friends/family not being supportive part….love the dog pics too 🙂

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  5. says

    It is really sad that people with so many personal issues stoop to such pathetic means like intentionally hurting other people’s feelings to try and feel something!

    I guess all we can do is keep our heads up and be the better person! 🙂 Great post, Julie!

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  6. says

    This was a really, really great post. I loved hearing about your insight, and hope that I will handle any negative comments the same way.
    I have yet to get one, but I know it’s coming!!! I will just have to remind myself that haters are gonna hate, and when people act out in a disrespectful way it is because the problem lies with THEM, not with YOU.

    I wish I saw your presentation because I bet it was awesome!

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  7. says

    Once again– awesome installment.

    I’ve only been blogging for about 2 months and have ALREADY received my fair share of negative comments. They can be extremely discouraging but I just need to keep in mind that those are the people who just want to bring me down!

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  8. says

    You’re so right that most of the time (whether on blogs or elsewhere) when people are rude and mean to others it’s because they have a lot of negative feelings about themselves. I do my best to always remember that and just feel sorry for them instead of getting angry. It’s taken a bit of practice though!

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  9. says

    Some people love to hate happy people, you know? Sure, I don’t post about all my bad/fat feeling/sad days, but I generally have a good, happy life and that’s what I write about. Some people would rather pick you apart than go fix their own situation. It’s just sad.

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  10. says

    Great post. (I’m really loving these Tuesday specials!) I haven’t had any negativity yet, and my family has been extremely supportive. I know that it *could* happen any day though, so it’s best ot be prepared. Knowing that it happens to everyone sooner or later will surely help me handle it.

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  11. Ellen says

    Is it weird that my favorite part of these posts is always the sadie pictures?! I love the little thought bubble’s you put up with them.

    Glad you two are reunited!

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      • Shayla @ The Good Life says

        I love love the Sadie pics and bubbles too! Especially the poo one, you made me laugh out loud 🙂

        I haven’t received any negative comments (yet!) but when and if I do I will definitely refer back to this post. Great tips Julie, and I love your positive outlook and advice about it all, thanks!

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  12. says

    I think it’s really hard to decide what I love more about these posts – the information or the pictures of Sadie. Haha. There are some real classics on here 🙂

    That said – another awesome segment of this! In terms of the negativity I tend to just ignore it. People can have their opinions and I can have mine – it’s what makes the world go round I suppose! I fully realize not everyone is going to agree with me and that’s okay!

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  13. says

    Great post! I, pesonally, just don’t get why people feel the need to be negative on someone’s personal blog- especially on sites that have such a positive vibe and message. It just seems like such a waste of time and energy (not to mention hurtful) to be mean to someone for no reason and then continue to read their site. It’s amazing what people feel comfortable writing online (most often under annonimity) that they would probably never say to someone in “real” life.

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  14. Holly says

    This is a great post! I haven’t thought much about negativity in regards to blogging because although I’ve been blogging for over a year, my blog is not very big so I have not dealt with anything scandalous.

    I also try to refrain from posting anything that might be controversial because I’m horrible at taking criticism, however I want to get away from that. I think my blogging style would improve greatly if I wasn’t always afraid that I was going to offend someone or make them think less of me. Hopefully I will get to that point and if I receive any negative comments or feedback, I hope I can handle them the way you do!

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  15. says

    Wow. I cannot believe someone would do something so highschoolish and ridiculous….but then again, I have seen many comment threads where I clicked on to make a nice innocent comment and saw a swarm of ridiculous arguments started inside the thread that immediately turned me away. Knowing how deep my own insecurities are, some people do not know how to deal with them and are jealous and lash out out at others for fun. It’s sad.

    You pictures of Sadie with the new(ish) addition of the comments make me laugh so hard sometimes, I almost spit my coffee into the computer screen!!!! Thanks for the laughs each morning!!!

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  16. says

    Look at Sadie when she was a puppy!! I attended HLS and loved your speech. Awesome info, but the coolest thing?
    My name is Julie and have a dog named Sadie!

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  17. says

    oh my gosh..i seriously just got my first negative comment yesterday. it has been bothering me so much!!! i was SO tempted to write back “you sound fun” or something sarcastic but i didnt. i also didnt know if i should publish it or not..but i did. i guess thats just part of having a blog..sometimes people dont agree with you..i would personally never leave a rude comment, but ya can’t control everyone/everything. thanks for the post!

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  18. says

    Another great Tuesday post Julie! I’ve yet to deal with a real negative comment but I definitely foresee it being very difficult for me to let it roll of my back. In real life I usually don’t hesitate to respond but you’re right it’s not worth it and the last thing I want to do is encourage a fight on my space.
    I didn’t know a lot of those IP address tips, very helpful!

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  19. says

    OMG your Sadie photos are making me crack up this morning!!!!! Awesome speech bubbles! 🙂 Luckily, I haven’t had a truly nasty comment left on my blog yet, but I know that it’s bound to happen one day. I just don’t understand why people feel the need to leave nasty comments – after all, no one is forcing them to read your blog!
    Like you, I try to steer clear of blogs full of negativity – I know everyone has their hardships, but I see that as something different from constant daily negativity. I try to keep my blog a happy place, and since I post first thing in the morning, I find that starting off positively sets the tone for the rest of the day. On that note, have a fabulous Tuesday Julie! 🙂

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  20. Jess says

    I don’t have a blog, but i read a lot of them and it drives me crazy when people just post hateful, mindless comments. I really like when bloggers encourage intelligent conversations and discussions in the comments sections of certain posts. Usually when that happens, I’ve noticed the readers are more apt to just shut the negative commenter down and not let them build any steam. We’ve got your back, bloggers 🙂

    Also, I love love love the captions you put with Sadie’s pics…Seriously making me crack up at my desk 🙂

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  21. Lauren @ What Lauren Likes says

    Wow! I am shocked just reading this! I can’t believe how rude some people can get….loved the last picture of Sadie! Perfect ending haha 🙂

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  22. says

    As an official newbie (I’m still setting up the blog site!) these blogger Tuesdays are a great help. The IP address tips are great, I’m be ready for any negative comments that come my way, but i guess you don’t know how you will react until it happens to you. 🙁
    Quick question…I’m having problems with Image Drop Shadow Plugin..Do you use it?

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    • Kelly says

      I think it goes both ways. You can always tell when a comment is meant to hurt someone’s feelings just by the tone or even the words. But I know there are some bloggers who seem to get offended and defensive over comments that simply state they disagree with them and attack whoever left the comment. So not only should readers be respectful of bloggers and other readers but bloggers need to respect others’ opinions as well.

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      • says

        i think you meant to post this in response to the comment below. 🙂 and i 100 percent agree with you that bloggers and readers need to respect each other’s opinions. there’s a REAL difference between differing opinions and just being mean.

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  23. Katherina @ Zephyr Runs says

    I’ve never received a negative comment but I have left one that was perceived as a negative comment. I truly meant it as constructive criticism (though maybe I had less than perfect intentions because I DID leave it anonymous) but it’s a touchy subject, based on the blogger’s negative voice. I was not alone in my response, but I was probably the nicest in saying it.

    (There’s a vizsla on the morning news!)

    It’s interesting how you went from furious to sympathetic towards a negative commenter, kind of forces you to look beyond the surface.

    I don’t deal well with negativity in day to day life because there is almost no negativity in my day to day life.

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  24. says

    I have only been blogging 6 months and haven’t had negativity…yet! This post helped me prepare for the inevitable occurrence of those negative comments and I appreciate you opening up about the negativity you’ve experienced. I can’t imagine anyone saying anything negative about you! You are beautiful and ALWAYS so positive!!

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  25. mel says

    while I don’t have a blog, I am a vegetarian and eat high volume meals. People always (esp women) comment on how much I eat and they don’t know how I stay thin. It used to bother me bc who wants someone talking about what they bring to lunch EVERYDAY! But I know their comments come from insecurities and jealously. If they ate healthy they could also eat low calorie, high volume meals and have room for a treat or two everyday without gaining weight. I have learned to brush it off bc I’m happy!! Screw negativity!

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  26. says

    Fortunately I am yet to receive a negative comment but it really annoys when I see them on other blogs! No ones forcing he/she to read a blog so why be hurtful?? Just stop reading right! I remember reading the MC article and was shocked how low she stooped! Bloggers are normal people too with feelings! Thanks for your constant positive energy despite any harsh comments you receive!

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  27. says

    Sadie definitely did a good job of adding some great humor within this post…I loved it! 🙂

    I really appreciate you writing about this. I just started a healthy living blog about a month ago and never even thought about negativity being such a big deal. Then I somewhat experienced it first hand and was shocked! I also was very disappointed and frustrated at first, but then I realized I just needed to let it go. You’re a great example, Julie. Thanks for sharing your insight and advice! I’m sure you and the other ladies on your panel did a great job with this topic at HLS!

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  28. says

    Great post, Julie! I am so glad that you decided to recap you presentation in you series. I am gaining SO much information from these posts.

    While I have only had one negative comment on my blog – regarding a grammatical error I had made (some teacher you are .. type deal) … I DO come across negativity in my job often – at the hands of parents.

    The biggest comment I had ever had to deal with was a parent telling me that their child was misbeahving because I was the teacher… it has never happened before and maybe the student should move to a new class. As a first year teacher.. it was HARD to just brush this away. While I KNEW it wasn’t true… there were thoughts in my mind – criticizing what I should be doing differently..was I a bad teacher.. etc etc.

    Two days later – I received an apology note from the parent – regretting everything she had said to me and explaining all of the stress that was in her life right now – it made me feel so much better and helped to make me NEVER second guess my abilities 🙂

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  29. Michelle says

    I just love you and I always leave your blogs feeling positive and upbeat, and I thank you for that! It’s refreshing. And I totally agree with Sadie – send them poo! LOL!!!

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  30. says

    Another AWESOME blog talk Tuesday post 😀 These MAKE my Tuesdays…seriously.
    I cannot believe that someone tried to mess with your personal relationship- that is REALLY messed up. And, I had NO idea about the IP address- that’s really good to know- thanks 🙂
    & I love Ryan’s Mom’s quote- that is awesome. I will be keeping that in mind.
    & BEST part of the post was definitely happy Sadie puppy!!!

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  31. Danielle Spellman @ Squirrel Snackin' says

    Great post! I’ve only recently started blogging and haven’t received any negativity yet. Actually, I’m really surprised with how nice people are! It amazes me. But I realize with time, negativity and mean comments might occur, so I’ll be ready! Even though it’s best to ignore mean comments, I can understand why it could upset your for days. Crossing my fingers it doesn’t happen!

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  32. says

    I’ve only been blogging for 2 and a half weeks now, so I haven’t had any negative comments so far. I do love the good ones people leave, it makes me feel great that I’m connecting with people – the whole purpose of my blog! I have gotten a few comments from people I know about blogging, but I just push those aside. I started my blog because I enjoy doing it and hope to inspire others the way that some blogs (including yours!) have inspired me to live a better life. We just have to keep the good parts in mind and brush off those haters!

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  33. says

    I’ve only dealt with one negative comment (from anonymous of course) and it was purely hateful. It attacked my family and friends, and there’s no way I’ll allow someone to hurt the ones I love. So I deleted it. I haven’t received another negative comment (knock on wood!) so I’d have to say I’m very fortunate, but I absolutely LOVED this post! If I ever have negativity issues with people in the future, I know who to turn to 🙂

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  34. says

    This is so great! Thank you for sharing your stories about being hurt and overcoming negativity. I haven’t received a negative comment yet, but I could see myself taking it very personally and just being hurt by it. I guess just like real-life negativity, I need to surround myself with my loved ones and talk it out with people who know me and know how to calm me down. I didn’t even realize there were bloggers who just slam other bloggers. Maybe I’m just naive? But why waste so much time to hate on something you don’t like?

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  35. Whitney says

    I have found that the best method is to be nice and pleasant to all negative people. It really irrates them…being negative back just feeds their fire. I would much rather blow sunshine up their butt!! 🙂

    I always tell myself this: Nobody can MAKE you mad. You have to ALLOW them to do so. So DON’T.

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  36. says

    Negativity in the blog world is so mind-boggling to me! I know that people are allowed to have their own opinions, but like you said, I wind up just pitying the people who make negative comments because there’s usually an underlying personal reason behind it.
    I usually just kill ’em with kindness…in real life and in the blogosphere. It usually works!

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  37. says

    I’ve (knock on wood) only recieved one very hurtful comment in the year or so I’ve been blogging. I knew automatically who it was (a personal attack from a “in real life” person.) and only confirmed it later with the IP address when they left a nice comment.

    Talk about your crazy 😉

    Thank you for this post – it’s good to know that even people I ADORE get rude comments. I guess it’s all part of the blogging game!

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  38. says

    Great discussion, Julie! I’ll say it again…I love your writing style. It’s so clean and concise and easily readable! I have yet to get a negative comment, thank heavens but I am not a “big-time” blogger like yourself 😉

    In my personal life I combat negativity with positive thought about the traits I DO like about the person who is speaking negatively to me. I know that we all have our faults and I try to air of the side of compassion.

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  39. Tara says

    Hi Julie…Your blog is super cute and helpful! Love it. I came across it a few weeks back on pinterest.
    P.S I went to H.S with you in Chicago..ahh the days!
    Keep up the great blog xoxo
    Tara

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  40. says

    Wow Julie I am really like the very last part with the story about your “epiphany” and Ryan’s moms comment/advice! it is very well put and so so true!
    In negativity in general I think I handle it very similarly to you. I let things go and I am not easily offended and I think I second guess myself if I do get on the defensive like “geez why am I so upset by this?!”

    Since my blog is still a baby I havent experienced any negative comments (yet) and I hope to keep them off the blog for readers pleasure and the sake of keeping a positive atmosphere – unless they come in the form of positive criticism of course! or polite “disagreements.” For now I have a comment monitor on where I have to pre-approve any comments from nwe commentors in hope to weed out spam and anything truley spiteful.

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  41. Stacey says

    Julie, anyone that writes negative comments about you is clearly just jealous!! I don’t understand negative people either. I guess you have to just take the comments with a grain of salt. You have such an amazing, inspiring blog. I love your positive attitude. Thank you for so many great reads!!

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  42. says

    Thank you so much for this Julie! I would have loved to hear your presentation, but this will have to suffice! I haven’t received a negative comment yet, but I’m sure that i will be upset when I do! I’ll definitely remember to come back and read this post when that day comes. I have already had some people outside of the blogging world question why I am doing this and they make comments…I just try to remember that they don’t really understand this amazing community and the joy I get out of blogging :).

    Btw- I totally want a vizsla after seeing your Sadie pictures all the time!

    Love you Julie! You are seriously so freaking awesome!

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  43. says

    Wow I never knew it could get that bad!

    But it’s a well known fact just by looking at Youtube and some other blogs that people just have to tear others to shreds for fun. Sometimes there’s nothing you can do about it and just brush it off.

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  44. says

    I am continually shocked by some of the comments people leave on blogs. I have seen horrible comments left on some of my favorite blogs and it makes no sense how people feel the urge to go fling crap at other people. I have found many blogs I do not enjoy because it is all negativity. I just move on. I see no reason to comment with negativity.

    For a long time I would not comment on blogs at all because I felt my comments were not smart enough, thought out enough or life-changing enough to be taken seriously. That has changed and I am so glad when I get to interact with bloggers now. I am working on it more often too!!

    I had a LOT of negativity I could have put all over my blog nonstop (family problems, unemployed, broke, relationship problems, knee injury, no job offers, etc) but I saw no reason to make it be such a downer place. And if I could find something positive and helpful to talk about on my blog it made me feel so much better than.

    I have received no negative comments so far but I also do not have a blog that is remotely popular and it has a long way to go on its looks, the pictures involved, the content, move to self-hosted, etc. It will happen slowly and surely and I am okay with that!! Life happens over time and so does my blog!

    I love your blog!! I am a pretty perky person but your bubblyness is amazing!! I love it!! Plus you also have inspired me to make smoothies!!! I love them even though we need a new blender (it sparks when I use but for some reason works for the man) LOL!!!

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  45. Dawn @ Blonde on a Mission says

    The Sadie pictures are my absolute favourite to go along with such a serious topic. She’s seriously the coolest pup around 😀

    I have yet to receive a negative comment, but in the past I have received negative comments on websites I used to have (blogging waaaay back when I was 14) and I just let it roll off my back. There is really no use trying to fight back on the Internet; it’s like trying to empty the pacific ocean with a spoon.

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  46. Lindsey @ Cardio Pizza says

    I love Blog Talk Tuesday! I look forward to it, thanks for doing it! It’s so helpful. 🙂

    I have not had a negative comment before, but have seen negative ones left on others’ blogs and it’s definitely hurtful.

    I think you provided great tips on how to handle them…you seem to handle those situations with such class!

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  47. says

    I am a new blogger so I don’t get a ton of comments (hopefully I will continue to grow!!!!) so the number of negative comments has been dismal but I have gotten some constructive criticism which I loved!

    But I think that it is important to deal with negativity in the blogworld and in real-life the same way; people are always going to be haters and we need to only value the opinions of the people we know love and support us. The one’s who are negative usually have their own issues going on or do not know us or completely understand us. I have learned that I blog for me and my readers only; not for those who are negative nancys!

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  48. Marie says

    Julie, I enjoy reading your blog more than any other blog. Your style of writing is so enjoyable – I feel like some other bloggers feel like everyone should look up to them.

    You addressed readers being negative towards bloggers, bloggers being negative to other bloggers, but how about bloggers being negative towards some of their readers? I’ve seen bloggers (and some of their followers) be mean right back to readers in the comment section by being snarky and just flat out rude for having a different opinion even if the comment wasn’t written to be mean. I’ve noticed lately that a lot of bloggers when commenting are just passive aggressive. Kill them with kindness is one thing – but to purposely do that to irritate them is just immature. You’re now stooping to their level.

    Yes, your blog is your castle and your guests should mind their manners, but as the host/hostess, you would never want your guests to feel unwelcome or uncomfortable. Hopefully, if it bothers them that much, they just won’t return next time 🙂

    Love love love your blog – so bright and cheery, yet you’re so humble and likable.

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    • says

      yes! i agree with you – bloggers should never make a reader attacked or uncomfortable for expressing an opinion in a polite and thoughtful way. i welcome feedback and comments and would never want anyone to feel like i’m going to attack them!

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  49. says

    I love this Blog Talk Tuesday post! I had my first negative comment like within the first 4 months of starting a blog – the anonymous person was so mad that we didn’t get a dog from the pawn but instead bought Salvador from a somewhat “prissy” store here. It hurt my feelings for a few days but then I realized people will say whatever they want. I can’t let anonymous comments on a vegetarian food blog affect my life and my decisions. So THANK YOU for this post and I’m loving this series!! PS. Sadie’s photos and those captions CRACK me up!!!! So cute!

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  50. says

    Sadie = THE CUTEST! I’m so glad to have discovered your blog, I can tell it’s destined to be a favorite. I like your writing style!

    Okay, let’s talk blog negativity. I was a vegan for 3.5 years. Last summer Veg News even named my blog one of the Top 10 Vegan Blogs. I had lots of traffic, lots of readers.

    But I got sick. Really sick. I had a team (a herd!) of doctors, nutritionists, and others working with me, and nothing we could do would make me better. Vitamins and supplements were not cutting it and I kept getting sicker. Seeing as how I had always enjoyed stellar health throughout my life it was really terrifying.

    I read and studied and thought and cried, and eventually came to the conclusion, that while there are many who can thrive as vegans, I was not one of them. If I had to eat meat to be healthy, then eating meat wasn’t wrong. So I ate meat. And my health rebounded very quickly, and now I’m healthier than ever.

    I made the announcement on my blog and in 3 days had over a quarter of a million views, and the hate mail started pouring in. It was horrifying. I published almost all of the vile comments, but I chose not to respond. I just couldn’t answer them all, so I decided not to answer any and let my post speak for itself.

    Then the death threats came rolling in. Death threats to me, my family, my friends. Then people began running background checks on me, my family, and my web designer. Articles began circulating in several different languages claiming I was a fictional creation of the meat industry designed to make veganism look bad, or that I was in the pay of the meat industry.

    People hacked into several of my person accounts and the death threats just didn’t stop. I live all the way over in Saudi Arabia, so I knew I was probably perfectly safe, but it was horrible. I kept up with everything for a solid week, sitting down at my computer feeling nauseous, terrified to see what was being published…and one day I just broke down in tears to my husband…and he said the simplest, most perfect thing – ‘just shut it down’.

    So I did. I shut down my blog for several months and just lived my life. I reveled in my newly regained health and celebrated my happiness. I’ve now returned to blogging and while I still get the occasional hate mail or negative comment it doesn’t phase me in the least. Most of the time, if it’s not too awful, I publish it and respond (most people say I’m too polite to the haters!).

    Whew! That was a doozy of a comment, but I really have a lot to say on this topic!

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    • says

      oh my gosh. that is seriously mindblowing. i cannot imagine death threats! i am so sorry you had to go through that but am so, so glad you’ve come out on top. i wish you would’ve been at HLS! you could’ve led our presentation!!

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      • says

        Oh my word. This is horrible!!! I am seriously never going to understand this level of vigilantism about food. I have my own ideas, but try very hard not to “push” them on anybody. I couldn’t even imagine resorting to threats about the topic.

        Wow. Just wow!

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  51. Heather B says

    I appreciate you asking the readers questions too! I love reading blogs but sometimes I feel like the blog clan is so tight that readers are often left out of the discussion. I used to be so sensitive to negative comments, now the older I get (30 on Sunday!!) the less it bothers me. I realize most people are just insecure about their own lives and try to take it out on others to make themselves feel better.

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    • says

      readers are the JAM! feel free to comment ANY time. 🙂

      and i totally know what you mean. before i started blogging i always felt slightly excluded from commenting on blogs – because i didn’t have one. but, as a blogger now, i can promise you bloggers LOVE hearing from readers, too! 🙂 thanks for commenting!

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  52. Jenni says

    This is a great post! I don’t blog myself even though I am a hard core blog lovah but this post is most definitely applicable to LIFE and how to handle those negative comments just as it is to blogging. I think the point you made about negative comments being made having nothing to do with the blogger/offended person but rather with the “mean girl” herself/himself is completely true. I think when other people are unhappy in their own lives and they see someone else’s life satisfied in a way they wish they could have, their immediate reaction is to want that person to hurt like they do so they’ll say something nasty to them. Sad, but in my experience, I have found this to be true almost 99% of the time.

    But I think the best part of the post is that quote. And I ABSOLUTELY just wrote it down and put it in my inspirational quotes jar on my work desk. And I wrote it as follows “If you find yourself becoming defensive about something, maybe it’s because you have something to be defensive about.” -Ryan Fagan’s Mom Hopefully she doesn’t mind just being referred as “Ryan Fagan’s Mom” 🙂

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  53. says

    I haven’t yet received any negatives comments on my blog (just A LOT of spam…how do you handle that, by the way??), but I definitely think I’d lose it if someone posted a comment like that about my fiance! I’m glad I read this post before getting any kind of negative comments because if/when I do, I’ll definitely be better prepared to handle it!

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  54. says

    Very important topic!!! I’m the type that wants to run and hide if I see or get a negative comment….not too good at just letting it roll off my back. I really, really am loving Blog Talk Tuesdays! 😀
    PS Sadie is soooo cute!

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  55. Kristin @ STUFT Mama says

    Oh man, negative comments just bite the big one. I took my first one personally for a long time. Then I figured not everyone is going to like what I put out there and I’m going to have to keep an open mind. I love that you said how it’s usually something more behind the negative comment. They usually have some deeper issues going on adn juts want to be “Debbie Downers”. I do get sad when readers try a receip and it doesn’t quite work out. I almost want to go to their hosue and make it for them. ha! PS- I bought soem Muenster cheese so I can try it with your jam and egg sandwich. 🙂 The light jarlsberg worked fabulously though!

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  56. says

    Great post Julie! When reading this, I found it not only relates to my blogging life, but also my personal life. I really agree where you said that usually the people that are rude and negative are people that are dealing with their own personal demons. I feel like I am surrounded by too many of those kinds of people and need to fix that. Maybe I should do a post about that?….

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  57. Sarah says

    Random question Julie:

    How do you cook your oatmeal? It always looks so creamy and delicious!

    Also, love the blog, keep up the great posts!

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    • says

      i usually just cook it in the microwave with water and then stir in some almond milk when it comes out. my mom cooks a big batch of old fashioned oats on the stove top following the directions on the container (with water) which is how my oats yesterday were cooked!

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  58. Mellissa says

    Negative comments are hard! But I have done the things you suggest, I NEVER respond and I have blocked IP addresses so that it goes to spam and never shows up on the blog.

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  59. Sarah B says

    I think my favorite part about this post is Sadie’s pics/commentary. Brings such a happy note to a frustrating (right word?) topic! She is such a cutie… I really should take more pics of my dog! I’m sure she’d be as wise as Sadie is.

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  60. says

    Great post! I have been a blogger for over a year now. I actually have two blogs, my personal one that is closed to outsiders and my craft blog. I have yet to receive any negative feedback on my blog but a person who I thought was a friend said some very unkind comments to me and actually accused me of something that I did not do (after all it is a craft blog!) I held onto this for a long time but I did finally come to realize that she has her own issues and saying hurtful things to me was just a way of being mean and getting out her frustrations. I still think about it but letting go is the key! Love your series and glad to hear that you had a great time at the convention!

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  61. Kathy says

    Hi Julie,
    I just wanted to say, I love your blog, it is now part of my daily routine. You are always so positive and I absolutely ADORE the bubble comments on Sadie’s pics. I LOL everytime. Keep up the great work..

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  62. Marie says

    Wow, great post! I only have a private blog that I keep for my kids. I would love to have a healthy living blog, but figure I have nothing interesting to say, and of course I also am afraid of negative feedback as I’ve seen some bloggers go through it. I LOVE the healthy living blog community, though. It really has changed so much of my perspective on things and I love and value all the new things I learn from you guys. I am blown away by how sneaky people can be by leaving regular nice comments and then leaving a mean, anonymous comments, too. It always seems though, that like you said, you never know what someone is going through and usually you have to just chalk it up to their personal problem and you weren’t really the issue at all.

    Love the Sadie pics! I was never a dog person because I didn’t grow up with one, although my husband is. We compromised (also because of my past allergies with dogs, which strangely went away) and got a Shih Tzu however he loves bigger dogs. Seeing all your posts on Sadie is making me really want a bigger dog now. She is so adorable! 🙂

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  63. Rosa - Fitness, Food, Fulfilled says

    Great post! I haven’t encountered negativity on my blog (it’s still so new), but have in my personal life. I can have a very quick temper and when I was younger, it would cause me to really flare up in defense. But now that I’m older, I let it roll off my back. I can’t change someone else’s perceptions and most of the time the negativity originates from things that I can not do anything about. I can only smile and continue to lead my own happy life and hope the other person can find their own clarity.

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  64. Mary says

    A little piece of advice my parents gave us when growing up “blowing someone elses candle out doesn’t make yours burn any brighter”. How true. Saying negative things just to be mean only makes you look bad. Keep up your positive attitude Julie, it is inspiring.

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  65. Candice says

    Hey PBF! Forget the haters! Just wanted to say I enjoy reading your blog daily and the pictures you put up of Sadie always bring a smile to my face! Keep up the blog goodness!!

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  66. jaci says

    loved this!! i know this is so weird, but Sadie looks like she belongs in your little family. haha not saying you or Ryan look like Sadie, but she kind of looks like you two? maybe it’s her light coloring, or maybe I’m just crazy! either way, she’s too cute for words.

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  67. says

    great post! i think this illustrates a lot of the troubles of the internet and online anonymity–or at least the illusion of it. it’s a great topic to address because i think a lot of times people feel that since you don’t personally know people online, what you say to them can’t hurt. well, it does, and it’s important to remember that so we can build blogs that don’t encourage negativity but deal with it graciously if/when it occurs.

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  68. Lee @ in the pink of condition says

    It’s so important to be positive in the face of negativity. That’s when positivity is the most important, in fact! Usually if someone says something negative to or about me and it upsets me, I think, well why am I upset about this, and is it true? If it’s true, I try to change it, and if it’s not, I remind myself that I am a strong, confident lady! Isn’t that what our blogosphere is about anyways? 🙂

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  69. says

    Thanks for posting this, Julie. I’m too new to the blog world to have dealt with negative blog comments, but I definitely deal with negativity in my own life (who doesn’t?!)

    I actually wrote a post about this just yesterday: I’m starting to realize that crappy things are ALWAYS going to happen (people will be rude/mean, work will be stressful, etc), but it’s how I react to those situations that will make all the difference. I can take a comment to heart and be upset by it and let it affect my daily life, or I can let it roll off my back and move on. I can freak out about all the things that are going wrong, or I can focus on what’s going right (and come up with solutions for the other stuff). That attitude change has made all the difference in the world!

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  70. jessica says

    I awoke feeling a little “off” this morning. Tummy ache and headache, dizzy, etc. I have to tell you that seeing that last photo of the puppy Sadie made me smile from ear to ear. Thank you.

    And this post is very informative! I just started my blog a few months ago and I am lucky that I haven’t had any negative comments yet…but this helps me to prepare for them and handle them in a professional manner.

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  71. Trish says

    I think there needs to be a distinction between feedback that is negative as in it’s mean – and negative as in it’s just a critical and different idea. Because sometimes the latter can be called negative when it’s really just different.

    I’ve seen people post a criticism (not mean, just a different opinion or whatnot) and then get attacked. It really bothers me when this happens.

    It’s like if your comment isn’t a big hug for the blogger, and if it expresses a different viewpoint or such, then suddenly the person commenting is a horrible, terrible person. It could be said in a calm, rational, reasonable way – but since it is a disagreement, then suddenly it’s “negative” and the person is cast as evil. I think it’s wrong when this happens. People have a right to an alternate opinion and it doesn’t mean they are negative.

    I agree that it is never right to be outright mean and nasty. But if you state your opinion, and it doesn’t happen to be a kiss-ass kind of comment, then why do you end up being attacked for that?

    I enjoy a lot of blogs (this one especially!!) but I think people should feel like they can express their personal thoughts and feelings – and if it is a criticism of the blogger, without being mean, then it should be welcomed not condemned. It seems sometimes all the comments are just a big love fest (which is great), but it needs to be okay to have a different view, too. There can be a fine line on this for sure, but I have seen it happen more than once that someone states an opinion and then they get attacked for it. Seeing someone be outright mean is sad – but it’s sad, too, when someone gets attacked for sharing different thoughts.

    No attacks, no nastiness – ever. I agree with that.

    But it’s okay to have different ideas and share them in a civil way. Being different, thinking differently helps us grow and learn. We can be different and be nice about it at the same time – that goes for the original commenter and then the people who respond to them. I think some bloggers, and others who are commenting in return, sometimes need to remember this. Just saying! 🙂

    And love Sadie!!!!! You both are like big balls of sunshine. Again, just saying. 😉

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    • says

      yes, yes, yes. as a blogger, i really do welcome differing opinions and thoughts that may disagree with something i’ve said. it can be hard b/c sometimes other people (not the blogger) will jump all over the commenter. i think that’s when it’s the bloggers job to jump in and make the conversation respectful and civil. people should feel okay about conveying differing thoughts without the fear of being ostracized.

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  72. Kristine @ Running on Hungry says

    I just adore your blog. And I couldn’t agree more with what Ryan’s mom told you. . it’s SO true.

    I feel like most of the time these negative commenters/emailers/etc just want a reaction (and probably have some deep insecurity/jealousy issues) and by not giving them one, it gets under their skin even more.

    Great post Julie!

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  73. says

    I’ve received one negative comment but it was more of a personal attack and nothing to do with the blog. Surprisingly, it did not affect me as much as I thought it would, because I really feel bad for people who have so much hate in their life that they would go out of their way to write something negative about others.

    I used to work in hotels during college and I would talk to guests who were so rude at check-in that instead of getting upset, I felt really bad for them. It had nothing to do with me because we just met, it has to do more about their life and what they are going thru.

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  74. says

    This is such a great discussion because it’s not something that will not only improve you as a person when it comes to handling the situation, but negative comments just HURT. I’ve received comments before that made me want to quit blogging as well and I got to the point where on tumblr my anon is actually off now. I have no reason/want to everr turn that back on…I had one of those days before where idk if it was the same anon but once one anon said something my inbox became full of hate.

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  75. says

    True story: When I just NOW realized that it was Tuesday, I squealed out loud bc that means Blog Talk Tuesday!

    Luckily, I haven’t had any negative comments on my blog (I need more readers before I can make anyone angry), but I have been a part of wedding and baby community boards where I have found very negative comments. Like Sadie, I think we should send them poo 🙂

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  76. says

    Julie, I really loved this session at HLS and I think it was a really good time to address it. I haven’t had *much* negativity on my blog, but I have had a bit of snarkiness. For me, it really helps to think of the people who made the comments and where they’re probably coming from, in order to keep positive. If someone is super snarky, I think about how they probably weren’t raised to be respectful to others and have probably been mistreated verbally or otherwise and is taking that mistreatment out on others (including me). If someone is mean in a nasty way, I think of that person as someone who has a lot of hate in their heart. The fact that they’re focusing that hate at me or another blogger is simply a matter of chance. By chance they happened upon the blog and decided to take that hatred out on the blogger. If it wasn’t me, it would have been someone else. I hope I am able to keep this perspective if I’m ever in the same boat as some of the bloggers who have been the victims of such nastiness. Thanks for following up an awesome session with a really great post!

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  77. says

    oh Julie, you posted this at a gooood time for me.

    two weeks ago, when I finally got the guts to post about my breakup (in a post that was WAY nicer than my ex even deserved), I got completely torn apart. by commenters who were my ex’s friends and my commenters who were anonymous.

    the best part? I was sneaky too (!!), and by looking up the IP address, I figured out the poster was someone who was my “good” friend.

    rooough.

    I’ve had lots of comments come from my “friends” from outside the blog world, including judgements saying the blog is an attention-seeker.

    the moral of the story? I get that we’re putting our lives out there, and not everyone will receive it well. sometimes, people are quick to judge those who lay it all on the line. and the ones who DO judge and say the hurtful things aren’t the ones we need to keep in our lives. 🙂

    the end!

    and Julie, I get that sometimes it’s hard to stay positive. but I’m so glad you do, ’cause it makes it easier for the rest of us. 😉

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    • Lauren says

      I read that post and you honestly were so respectful to your ex…that was so frustrating to watch you get slammed by people who obviously knew you in “real life” and were being jerks. You kept your class though and handled it really well! 🙂

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  78. says

    So true. I’ve only had one negative comment and I knew the commenter. They have lots of personal problems but it didn’t hurt less. It’s hard.

    But seeing the difference between criticism and mean is key for me and for any blogger. People will judge any decision but knowing yourself and why you are doing it is key to keep true to yourself.

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  79. says

    My blog is still a work in progress – so I don’t get many comments yet, but the ones I have gotten have been nice 🙂

    I think it’s easy to be jealous of others success and some people don’t deal with it well. You seem like a very nice person with a good life; a girl who has got her “ish” together. Haters gonna hate, and you have a good attitude about it.

    BTW – I really love/appreciate this series and OMG BABY SADIE!!!

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  80. Yolie @ Practising Wellness says

    This is such an interesting and informative post, Julie…it makes me sit up and think, and it’s such an important topic to discuss and bring to the fore…so thank you for doing so with such openness and candid-ness. 🙂 I really enjoyed reading this – as a blogger, and as a reader. And I love the photos of Sadie…she’s a cutie! xyx

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  81. says

    Another great blog talk tuesday post! As a new blogger I’ve been experiencing some negativity about my blog in my personal life like close friends.

    How do you deal with friends who find it funny to sabotage your blog behind your back?

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  82. says

    I have never had anyone write anything negative about me, but I have had someone try to comment to me about another blogger. Super odd and I deleted it. I don’t give people like that energy because it’s not worth it.

    On a side note, Sadie is too cute, such a swet puppy face!

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    • says

      Just because someone chooses not to blog about the hardships in their life, doesn’t mean their life is all ‘rainbows and glitter’. It’s just a choice to keep the tone of the blog uplifted!

      I admire that you can do both on your own blog, but it is your choice to do so. If you didn’t, someone else might say they think yours is the perfect life!

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  83. says

    I didn’t read all the comments, but what I will say, as a blogger now, but first a foremost a reader, sometimes…and I only mean sometimes, if someone (like me) doesn’t have exactly the perfect life (and who does), but reads a lot of blogs (like yours for example) that seem to only write about rainbows and glitter :O), then sometimes, sometimes it can really wear on a person and send home (to our heads) that our lives pale in comparison. Yes we should not do that, but people do (myself included sometimes); its just hard not to. Personally I like to see (read) that those out there also have bad days and get mad and have fights with their SO’s. Maybe its too much info, and maybe bloggers dont want to ‘portray any negativity’, but portraying undying perfect love and perfect house and perfect life can really make a person feel bad.

    While I still read your blog every day, several times a day, there are days that I wont because I am having an abnormally bad self kind of day you know? Then I go read the blogs that I know will write about struggles as well as triumphs. And by struggles I dont mean having to eat in the hotel cafeteria :O)

    Love the blog talk tuesdays since I am trying to grow my blog readership. And yes, I am one of those that blogs (some) of my hardships but try to keep it to somewhat of a non crazy person status. :O)

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    • says

      i can completely understand that. and while i do not want to portray my life as solely “rainbows and sunshine” i DO want to keep my blog positive – as i want to keep my life positive. i really try not to dwell on the negative but i know that by NOT posting about fights i have with ryan or other issues in my personal life that are just that – personal – it may appear that i dance in the rain and sing all day long. that is actually what inspired me to write this post: http://www.pbfingers.com/2011/02/02/psa-were-not-perfect/ – and my posts about my struggles in a past job, etc. thanks for your comment, junie. i really appreciate it and the respectful way you stated your thoughts. 🙂

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  84. says

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for this post. I’ve been thinking about this subject a lot since you told us you were speaking at the HLS, and I really just wanted to hear more about you or other’s experiences.

    You have such an amazing attitude, and I suppose you also have to develop a thick skin for these things (although you shouldn’t have to in the first place!!)

    I feel like I want to defend my favorite bloggers from these weird attacks– if you won’t sink down to their level, maybe us readers can! 😉

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  85. says

    Hey Julie, love the puppy photo – so cute. Thanks for your blog talk series! You have inspired me to ditch blogger and take the leap to wordpress and I have to say it is a MILLION times better!!

    🙂

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  86. says

    you win some.. you lose some, Its hard to please everyone and some people are a little hard headed of certain subjects. To each their own. I will receive an email or comment every now and then judging the way I look, or raise my babies. I just think they really don’t know me do they?? I sometimes laugh it off, if it really bugs me Ill talk to my hubs about it and he always makes me feel better.

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  87. says

    Hey Julie! Great post – I received two negative comments recently…both under different anonymous emails. By figuring out the IP address I determined they were from a long-lost ex bf…who apparently isn’t over me? Sheesh…losers.

    My current bf’s reactions to the negative comments are my favouirte too, and I’m so happy that I have a partner who does support all things involved in my blogging!

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  88. Tracy @ Tracy's Treats says

    Great post Julie!

    I think that people who spend their time trying to bring others down are either very insecure about their own lives or very unhappy and want others to join them in their misery.

    They’re obviously not in a good place and it’s more sad than anything else. Don’t let them bring you down! 🙂

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  89. says

    Great post! I haven’t received any negative comments myself. But I probably don’t have enough readers for that?
    I did get one comment once that was about my husband. It wasn’t bad, but I thought it would hurt his feelings and I know he reads my comments – so I deleted it.

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  90. says

    These posts have been so helpful. I haven’t been blogging very long (and sometimes not very consistently) but it’s so refreshing and encouraging to hear things I readily identify with. Blogging can sometimes leave you feeling vulnerable and insecure; it’s a scary thing to know that there are those who will read with an intent to wound or malign. No different than the real world I guess…but still…there is something different about blogging because, as you said, sometimes you don’t have the ability to address the issue with the person.
    Thanks for these posts! They’ve been so helpful!!!

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  91. says

    I agree on your comment about not reading blogs that make you angry or mad.
    Why would I want to read a blog that I get angry about. I love and feel privileged to read blogs such as yours where you share about your life. If i didn’t enjoy it i would stop reading.

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  92. Kelly says

    Hey, new reader here. I love this post. Unfortunately, there are haters out there whether it’s in the blogging world, school or work place. I worked with a hater for 3 years. And you’re so right, it’s about them, not you. Often times the person is pretty miserable anyways.

    On another note, Sadie is so damn cute. I’m sure you’ve mentioned this somewhere but what kind of breed is she?

    Look forward to reading more!

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  93. Nicole says

    Great post girl! I have been reading blogs for almost 3 (including yours haha) years and haven’t started my own because I don’t think I have the time but also because I’m afraid of any backlash like this…it definitely can be intimidating to start a blog and I know any negativity would really bother me at first. Maybe I’ll finally start up a blog though and reference this post need be! Btw, I really wanted to comment that I saw another ‘Sadie’ dog, I know her breed but I’ve only ever seen one other vizsla once in NYC…I saw a girl bringing her for a run along the Hudson, SO cute, I really want one!

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  94. Jessica Corbin says

    Negativity exists everywhere and it is unfortunate that someone can truly make or break our day. I try to just let it roll off and think happy thoughts. Sometimes it is hard to shake the negative feelings, but it is important to do that so people realize they cannot affect you. I love your posts, you are a light in my own life and I find myself doing things and buying things because you have had a good experience and write about it. Your feedback on things makes me realize that it could work for me too. “Just Keep Swimming” – Dory.

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  95. says

    I’ve had one negative comment on my blog. They left their email address but didn’t leave their name. While it kind of shocked me to see that reaction, I didn’t comment back because I didn’t want them to know it bothered me.

    I’ve also had some issues with my mom reading about my shopping habits and getting mad at me. We didn’t talk for 3 days because of one post and we usually talk every day. It definitely made me feel like I had to hide things on my blog, which I never want to do. My dad also didn’t like the name of my blog and how I may be portraying myself to potential employers. For a while it made blogging not as fun, but I’ve talked to both my parents and I think they’re both enjoying my blog now.

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  96. says

    Great post, Julie. I have just recently started blogging (after being inspired by your blog)! I always wondered how I would deal with negative comments. I would personally probably delete the hurtful ones and keep the constructive criticism ones. I think the way you deal with it is great and love all your advice!

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  97. says

    Thankfully most of the weirdness on my blog via comments are captured with Akismet and are spam. Not so much negativity. I do get negativity in other areas, but what I’ve found is usually the person who is criticizing my choices is completely ignorant as to what they are saying. They don’t understand much of what they are saying and usually are just repeating what they have heard, instead of investigating for themselves.

    I don’t mind that people have opinions and I don’t mind constructive criticism. If I do get a negative comment I first wait a little bit before I respond to let any bad feelings pass if I get them, then respond politely sharing something that they may not have thought of and helping them see that there is another viewpoint etc. If they keep going after that though I don’t bite into it. I’m here to educate and help as much as I can, but I know that where your thoughts go energy flows. If I keep myself surrounded by positivity, there is less room for negativity to come into my life.

    Good to know about the IP address search. You are sneaky lol! That would help to understand though and get a clearer picture of what might be going on with that person and help with sympathy and empathy. Great post and worth a tweet!

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  98. says

    I like your philosophy, Julie. I recently got into blogging myself and have luckily not had any negative comments (but, I also haven’t had many readers besides my loving friends and family, so maybe that has something to with it!) It’s sad how some people hide behind some anonymous profile and much such ugly comments. If they had to use their real names and identities, I can’t imagine how much negative posting would go down.

    Anyway, I can’t even handle reading negative comments on other people’s blogs, so I’m not sure how I’d handle negative comments directed at me! I hope I can handle online negativity with as much grace as you do if and when it does happen.

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  99. says

    I love your detective work about the IP addresses. Well done. It’s SO right. People tend to want to spread their own misery.

    On my blog today I mentioned my new found wisdom about crazies, and I think it totally applies: If there is anything I have learned from watching reality TV (hello Bachelor Pad) it’s that when confronted with a crazy, always stay level headed. The crazy gets so much more upset and ends up making a fool of itself and eventually sabotages itself.

    PS Sadie is my fave. I keep seeing a dog like her in my neighborhood and I get excited. The owner may be scared of me now…

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  100. Colleen says

    This is a great blog post. I think it’s important that bloggers know how to stand up for what they believe in. Especially bloggers who post more about there life and give readers information that is privileged. I personally have never received any hate comments on my blog because I guess people don’t feel the need to hate on an art blog! But I notice health blogs get picked on a lot because people might feel jealous, envious or differently about the lifestyle that you (as in health bloggers) live.

    You offer very important tips to over come cyber bullying. Thanks so much!

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  101. says

    I loved this installment of Blog Talk Tuesdays! I’ve gotten a fair share of mean comments, and at first, they really bothered me. I saw them as personal attacks on who I was as a person since I try to portray that very clearly in my blog. Then I realized that these people don’t even know me. They think they know me. Then I just laughed it off!

    BUT I did receive a few comments from a reader, and let me tell you, they were nasty. I had to block “him” because he would comment on every single post. It just became too much. Some people, I tell ya…

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  102. says

    I’m glad you made the note about the difference between a differing opinion and a truly mean comment. I’ve seen so many so-called “blog controversies” that happen because someone left a comment expressing an opinion that was different from what the blogger stated – and then many other ganged up on that person, calling them a ‘hater’ and ‘jealous’

    I truly believe that everyone should be entitled to his/her own opinion and should be able to speak it – in a respectful way.

    I guess what I’m really trying to say is that I hate the sometimes ‘mob-mentality’ that happens. I’ve had to stop following a few blogs because they allow commenters to bash others who leave opinions (again, not hateful comments) that differ from the blogger.

    I really respect how you have run PBFingers and really haven’t seen that type of activity happen here – so kudos to you 🙂

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  103. says

    I just have to say I LOVE your blog. Reading it every day makes law school a little easier 🙂

    We’re also semi-neighbors, which makes it even more awesome. I’m in Gainesville for law school, but my family is in Tampa. Small world isn’t it?

    Anywhoo, I haven’t been part of this blog world long enough to receive any negative comments, but you take it in such stride. I have so much respect for you and everything you’ve done with this blog. Sadly, people sometimes direct their personal jealousy into negativity towards others. You do such a good job balancing it and staying positive and focused on what’s really important <3

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  104. says

    I haven’t dealt with any negative comments yet, but now I’m so glad I’m armed and ready once that first one comes along! I tend to be a pretty positive person, “looking on the bright side” is something I try to do in negative situations. Not to say I’m always a bundle of sunshine, but I do make an effort.

    Thanks for the tips 🙂

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  105. Lauren C. says

    I work in a service job and realize that the majority of the time, people are not mad at me directly so I just let it go and don’t take anything they say to heart. Plus, I like to live by the motto,”If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I love all of the life lessons that you can learn from Disney movies!

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  106. says

    First of all, AWWWWW SADIEEEE!!! 😀

    Okay moving on, I am quite blessed to see that you are able to have compassion on the ones who try to hurt you!! Not many people know how to do that, and I love that you’re seeing the person hurting others through the right lenses. It’s almost like, they should know better, but then…they don’t. And that’s because hurt people usually want to hurt people. Thanks for such an interesting post Julie!

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  107. says

    “If you find yourself becoming defensive about something, maybe it’s because you have something to be defensive about.”- Word!

    And like you said, it is sad in a way. Someone could be having the worst day of their life. You just never know!

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  108. says

    I haven’t had a negative comment, but I deal with negativity on a day to day basis. I’m glad you said what you did about when you read a blog that makes you angry or upset to just stop!
    That has happened to me recently where a person has been basically talking about me on her blog in a non direct way where you can tell who she is talking about. I made the mistake of reading it last week and it really got under my skin. I have not gone back to her blog since then, and I definitely won’t. A blog is not a place to put down other people.

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    • says

      my experience was the same. a blogger was blantantly talking about me without saying my name… referencing my dog, the foods i eat, etc. it was hard to read and one day i was just like “WHY am i even reading this!?”

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  109. says

    Thank you so much for these posts! I am a BRAND NEW blogger, and I need all the advice I can get! Thank you for posting so frequently and making my 15 work breaks fun 🙂

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  110. says

    Really great points! I haven’t encountered any negativity but I can see how it could happen (and how difficult it is to relay tone through writing)! And if all else fails, just do what Cely did on her blog post today @ running off the reeses. hilarious 🙂

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  111. says

    I love the quote about the candles, it is so true! I wish I could’ve seen your panel at HLS.

    I am a teacher and I find that parents that say negative things about me/my teaching style/policies have their own insecurities and their negativity manifests itself to me through complaints and unkind words.

    I do my best to ignore it (and most certainly don’t engage in it) and kill them with kindness!

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  112. Alaina says

    gosh, sadies pictures really do make me smile! i was eating some peanut buttaahhhh and it reminded me to catch up on your blog. such an great post! this, and the “comparison trap/self esteem” posts always leave me in a better mood and ready to take on the world! one hater at a time!

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  113. Cat says

    First, I want to say I LOVE your blog, I smile every time I get the email that says Peanut Butter Fingers. I have had a few days where things in life have gotten to me & my attitude was …let’s just say awful….your blog came & totally changed my mood & gave me the attitude adjustment I needed.
    I don’t have a blog & I rarely post on the ones I read, but I LOVE the candle comparison…it does seem that people who put others down do so in hopes of feeling better, but really there’s no way to feel better with such hatred inside of you.
    THANK YOU FOR MAKING ME SMILE!!

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  114. Rachel says

    Julie, great post!! Even if people don’t blog (like myself..yet), you can use your great advice in all aspects of life. You worded everything so well. There is no space for Debbie Downers in our lives. You made a great point that most of the time, these people are fighting personal dramas. If these people have nothing nice to say, we should just ignore them.

    Oh and your Sadie pictures are ADORABLE!! And she looks like a Clemson doggie with her orange and purple collar and then purple sunglasses! Go Tigers 😉

    Great Post!! 🙂

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  115. Jessica says

    I completely agree with you that if you don’t like someone’s blog or agree with their views then just don’t read it! No need to leave hateful comments. I haven’t been blogging for very long so haven’t dealt with any of that on my personal blog but in real life it can be hard to brush off the negativity. I believe 90% of the time attacks made on others are not personal but rather have to do with the attacker’s own issues or insecurities. We just become the outlet for them to exprsess their feelings…

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  116. Carla in Sydney says

    I don’t have a blog but I think that is so clever that you can search their IP address! I am also not very tech savvy but this really impresses me. People are so quick to post negative things when they assume it cannot be linked back to them. That is so horrible that somebody commented that they saw Ryan cheating…..What is wrong with some people?? By the way, I love Sadie….she is adorable!!!

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  117. Danielle says

    I like Sadie’s idea of sending them poo. I’m sure she has some to spare.

    I agree that if you don’t like what was in the blog then don’t read it. I have wanted to respond to commentors stupid comments more then the blogger. There is no point in wasting your time to write a nasty comment. Most of us have better things to do.

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  118. says

    Three things:

    1) I am NEVER going to get tired of that first “Sadie-the-grump” photo!!! I love that dog. PS, there’s a canine nutjob sitting next to me on the couch who loves her, too – hah.
    2) I don’t even know you, yet it makes me incredibly sad to think that the blog world might have lost you due to the poison of negative commenters. You are a gifted writer, a funny writer, and a compassionate writer. The world needs more like you and I am very glad that you rallied. And since I’m older than you, OK, a little bit proud as well 🙂
    3) Ryan’s Mom is a very wise woman. That comment pulled me up short and made me think. Is she Yoda?

    Loving Blog Talk Tuesdays, Julie. Good stuff. Keep it coming!!

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  119. Jenny Langham says

    I look forward to your blog everyday and to be honest, when I read it I feel happy. Your dog is especially adorable…:) Thank you for keeping up with your amazing blog.

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  120. says

    I LOVED this workshop and I’m so glad I went. I received one nasty comment only a few weeks after I started my blog and I was so upset. After a few days I was alright and deleted it from my inbox so I would stop looking at it! I tried the IP thing, but they never left another comment so I couldn’t find them 🙁

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  121. Ruth B says

    I’m with Jenny (who commented above). I love your blog and it puts a smile on my face. I love the pup too! When it comes to negativity in my daily life, I let it roll off my back. I think it started when I hit 30 or so (I’m 34 now), that I realized drama and negativity have no place in my life. Life is so short and precious that we should try to enjoy all the beautiful things it has to offer. You said it best in your post today….those that write the negative comments, usually do so because they are unhappy and they want others to feel as they do. They are down, so they want to bring you down. It’s pretty immature, but some people never grow up. Keep up the great writing and don’t let any of it get to you! You inspire others!

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  122. says

    I’m so uncreative with my Blog Talk Tuesday comments, mostly because I’m obsessed with this series. I haven’t really had to deal with negativity on my blog (the upside of having barely any readers! Yay! Haha), but I think all of this information is so useful. I really appreciate your story about the blogger from Michigan, too…definitely something important to keep in mind in any bullying situation.

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  123. says

    I dealt with it recently on facebook. I commented to another blogger that I wish I was attending the same event she was because I knew we would have a blast and get along well. Another blogger decided to comment on my comment in a pretty underhanded manner. It really hurt and made me feel so unwelcome and uncomfortable. I was thinking exactly the same thing you initially thought, “What did I do to you to make you hate me?”. I then realized that I am spending way too much time and energy on this person, who clearly has her own issues and doesn’t know me AT ALL. That helped put things in perspective.

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  124. says

    This was a really interesting post. I haven’t received any negative comments yet, but my blog isn’t very big. I have a feeling that the “bigger” bloggers get more negative comments because there’s a lot of jealousy in the blogosphere.

    I will never understand nastiness for the sake of nastiness. I’m sorry that your feelings were hurt by people…my feelings would be hurt too if a complete stranger tried to destroy my relationship. That’s just…ugly.

    That said, I’ve also seen some exchanges in the comment sections of blogs where people are accused of being “mean” or “negative” just for disagreeing with the blogger. (I’m not talking about your blog…I’m a new reader and haven’t been here long enough to have read more than a few posts.) I think that there should definitely be room for polite and constructive disagreement on blogs!

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  125. says

    Thanks so much for sharing! Fortunately, I haven’t experienced any negativity [yet] in regards to my blog, but I’m only two weeks in and think it’s unavoidable… Any negativity is hard to ignore but it always feels so much better when you can rise above it and know that you’re committed to something you enjoy and don’t let others affect you 🙂

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  126. says

    This is great Julie! Ive only been blogging for about 2 months and haven’t received that many comments yet- and no negatives, but i can imagine how bad I would feel!! And have to fight to not indulge the person and comment something nasty back. lol!

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  127. says

    When I read your post I immediately thought of a quote my mom shared with me during those awkward pre-teen years that stuck with me BIG time:

    “Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”
    — Dr. Seuss

    Gah I just LOVE the doc. 🙂

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  128. says

    I think it’s judgemental to say someone else’s blog is “negative” or that you feel bad after reading it. Everyone has the right to post what they feel and sometimes it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. Because you choose to keep your blog “positive” doesn’t mean that someone else’s is negative because they want to write about more serious things from time to time. It may also be a misinterpretation of what they’re writing. People have different sense’s of humor and have gone through things that you probably haven’t experienced in your life. You might have a different world view from theirs so you probably don’t have the same sense of humor or misunderstand their tone. I’m not sure if that makes sense. It just sounds very superior to me to say that someone else’s blog is “negative” because they don’t blog in the same manner as you do. The blog world is bigger than HLBs and we can choose to read what we do and what we don’t. Everyone enjoys different topics. It doesn’t mean yours is better because it’s what you deem “positive” or that people aren’t “good” because their blog is different from yours. Just my opinion and something to think about. I hope you have a Happy New Year 🙂

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    • says

      thanks for your comment, melissa. i apologize if i came across judgmental in this post, as that is not what i intended – especially since the post is addressing how i personally handle negativity. i didn’t mean to tear other blogs down, but my personal opinion is that there are blogs out there that i read that affect me negatively. perhaps that’s how i should’ve worded it? that they affect ME negatively – not that they ARE negative. i’m sure my blog affects some people negatively as well, so please don’t think that i believe my blog is “above” other blogs, as that is definitely not the case.

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