Is Meanness Ever Justified?

Barbara Vey -- November 9th, 2010

I just don’t understand meanness in any form, but I’m especially appalled by what I see happening on line.  The buzz word lately is bullying and it just isn’t happening to kids.

I try to keep my blog upbeat and make it a pleasant experience for all who read it.  On the whole I’ve been very happy with the positive responses posted.  Even when someone has disagreed with my opinion, their  comments have mostly been well thought out and the reasoning valid.  I have no problem with that.

I also have a YouTube account where I post all the Drive By Videos and interviews I do for the blog.  The goal has always been to be entertaining and have fun.  I did get dinged for a video I did on Ready to Eat military meals when I was stranded in the New Orleans airport during hurricane Gustav.  A viewer questioned my patriotism (I have long supported our troops btw) and my commentary.  Although I was only trying to explain what I was experiencing when I opened the container, I did let the comment remain because (s)he correct something I said that was inaccurate (I thought I saw a mini-marshamallow, but it was apparently a Chicklet).

Moral compass

Moral compass

My concern today is an interview I did with an author about her book.  She is a delightful , articulate young woman and I was horrified by the comments left.  They were extremely negative, but not one person had read the book.  No, the comments were all personal attacks on the author to include her looks, intelligence and morals.    Where did all this venom come from?

The interview was about the book.  How could anyone, in good conscience attack the author personally?  I know this goes on all the time at Amazon and that bothers me too, but I can’t control that.

Although I do make my YouTube site public, I have ended up closing the comments section of the video.  I wouldn’t have minded valid conerns about the book if the commentators would have taken the time to bother reading it, but I couldn’t allow my videoes to become an area where cowardly, anonymous, vicious attacks are unleased on people who have trusted me to do a good job.

What are your feelings on the subject?  Should all comments be posted, no matter what?  Is the moral compass broke on the internet?  How would you have handled it?  And what if it happened to you?

Bottom Line: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all” ~  My mom.

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