A Disclaimer - Get Off My Internets

There are so many people in this world who are not going to like you, and they won't stop there, some will try and bring you down. You just have to accept that. It is an unfortunate truth. I have seen so many bloggers get extremely upset over what they have seen people saying about them online. Of course I have had my feelings hurt too, I am only human. However, when you put yourself so publicly on display on social media and online, you are opening yourself up to that criticism. You get a lot of good, and you have to accept that you will also get some bad. You are not going to be everyone's cup of tea. This is something you quickly learn when gaining more of an audience online. Before I started blogging, I honestly knew of no one who didn't like me. This doesn't mean there weren't people who didn't, they just didn't feel the need to tell me, talk about it with me, etc. You see, in real life, most adults with common sense keep hurtful, negative opinions to themselves. They just don't associate with the people they don't like. So you might be going around not aware of who actually doesn't like you or not. There is something nice about this, I mean, "ignorance is bliss" is a famous phrase for a reason.

I hardly ever get negative, mean comments on my actual blog. Most of it comes from a site called Get Off My Internets, a forum for people to discuss bloggers. Unlike a lot of bloggers, I personally don't think this site is all bad. People just want a space to freely discuss what they think about a blogger and their content. But sometimes, the line is crossed. Crossing the line always happens on the internet, people feel invincible behind their computer screens. They are less accountable, and they become more willing to say things they would never say to your face. When that happens, you can see the true nasty side of people. But it is kind of a catch-22, because you also get to see what people really think, how they really feel about you. That can be incredibly insightful information. You can learn a lot about yourself when you see what people say anonymously or freely. If you approach criticism or "haters" as some might call them with this mentality, you can really learn a lot. Unfortunately for the most part people aren't offering up any great insight or riveting advice for the blogger to learn from. Most of it is petty, rude, and down right hilarious.

Of course I have seen my GOMI page. Any blogger who says they haven't is lying. It isn't like you start off searching for it. One day you notice steady traffic coming from a certain site on your analytics, so you wonder on over and discover an entire forum dedicated to talking about you. You get to read all the lovely, or not so lovely things people are saying about you. This is how I found my GOMI page.

Honestly, most of it is so incredibly silly. They base massive overarching opinions about you off of one picture, or if you misspell something. The conclusions people can come up with sometimes just make me go straight to laughter. Thing is, you can only show so much of yourself online, like a 2D picture, and you better be prepared for people to sometimes "misunderstand" you or not get the whole 3D image of who you are, because, well, that is impossible. Sometimes people you have actually met or know go on and talk about you. Personally, those are the saddest to me. You expect strangers to talk about you but people you have been in acquaintance with or know makes it seem so much more personal. You would expect those people to be upfront with you in real life, not hide their feelings behind a computer screen. But that goes back to the people feeling invincible with anonymity.

So how do you deal?  

I have been asked by other bloggers how I deal with the stuff people say online. Personally, I don't "deal" with anything, because I don't let it get that deep. You just have to understand where it is coming from. No I am not saying anyone who writes something negative is obviously so jealous of me, blah blah blah. What I am saying is, read what they have said and put it in one or two piles. 

1. Load of crap pile. 
2. I could learn something from this pile.

Stuff that is so obviously coming from a non constructive place just gets rolled off my back. You just can't feed into that kind of behavior. It never turns out good. You don't know where people are coming from when they write that kind of stuff. I pride myself on being able to see the good in people. I won't let my participation in the blogging community change that. I still believe that all people are fundamentally GOOD. If someone is rude, mean, or nasty, it is coming from something else going on in their lives.

If I see someone has totally misunderstood my intention, or read into something completely wrong, I take note for next time to make sure I explain more thoroughly. And when it applies, I really do try and learn from constructive criticism. I feel like everyone has to be open to seeing their flaws if they want to become a better person. By the age of twenty five I am pretty sure I know what a lot of mine are, and as I get older I am sure I will discover many more. It doesn't mean I love to see other people point them out, especially strangers, but I put myself out there on a public forum, and I feel like I can handle it. Some people can't handle it, and for them I suggest they live a more private life. And remember, it is what the people close to you in your real life think, that really matters.

Speaking of life, I would also suggest that people remember that the internet is not that. The internet is not your life, or at least, it shouldn't be. This blog is a small facet of my life. It is a fun outlet that I enjoy, but I truly thrive and enjoy spending my time with my family, friends, and loved ones. Don't worry so much about what people say or do on the internet, focus on your real world. Embrace your life, LIVE life offline.

So this is my OFFICIAL DISCLAIMER to this blog:

This blog is a space for me to have fun. I don't take it that seriously, and yes, I often post without proof reading. I don't claim to be a "writer." I blog because it is fun to post about fashion, my random thoughts, my current workout routine, whatever the heck I want. My blog content isn't hard hitting news people! So don't expect that kind of dedication to this space. I blog because I enjoy it, and if a few people along the way enjoy it with me, great! It makes it that much more fun. Don't like what you see? My advice would be to MOVE ON, like I am sure hundreds of people who land on my blog do. Not relish in why you don't like me.

At the end of the day it comes down to this; I would much rather be a person who is focusing on trying to be better, and someone that lifts up others. I want to be someone who celebrates those around me, and not someone who is focusing on another's imperfections or flaws.

All I can do is try to be a better me, bringing someone else down doesn't help me with that. So I try my best to avoid it. I am by no means perfect, and I don't expect you to be either. Let's just make sure we know what our intentions are.

29 comments

  1. Amen sista. The worst part about blogs and just social media in general, is that it is SO easy to put people down and share your nasty opinion and not have to worry about the negative consequences. Ugh--I'm sorry. GOMI is the lamest place on earth and it makes me SICK that people stay on there all day just to tear down others. GET A LIFE, PEOPLE!

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  2. Yes Yes Yes! I think you made a valid point...GOMI doesn't have to be all bad. If I ever start receiving traffic from that site I know I will be very very tempted to look even though I know it will hurt my feelings (I don't have thick skin...at all). Yet I think you have taken an icky situation and instead of responding immaturely, you have made the best of it.

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  3. It's true. Everyone isn't going to like you and some even might hate you. It's just life. I do believe that it's fair to have an online forum to speak your mind freely and voice a dissenting opinion. Instead of leaving the comments here they can leave them there. They get to vent and the blogger gets finds out what people don't like. I also agree that a lot of people take it way too far. A lot of the comments are just downright ugly and I cannot believe the amount of time that is put into dissecting and bashing people that they don't even know. I can't even imagine how it would feel to publish a post just knowing that there are a bunch of people that are going to pick it apart line by line and trash it. I think this post was very well done but like anything; not everyone is going to like it.

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  4. I love everything about this post! I find it so juvenile when people are determined to bring others down for no reason. Seriously it's like there's this population of adults who still act like they are in high school. We should be lifting up not bringing down!! You're the best Alycia! Love ya!

    Bekah
    http://vanillaslumber.blogspot.ca/

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  5. Haters gon' hate but I'm glad that you are able to make a learning opportunity with something like this. I came across the site a couple years ago and couldn't believe people actually take the time to write these things-- wow! Great post and keep doing your thing :)

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  6. Gosh, that site. I have shed a few good tears over it. But like you said, most of what is written on there comes from a very negative space and can not be taken as fact. You and your site are awesome girl! Keep on rockin' it! ;)
    xo TJ

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  7. I never heard of that site until now. I enjoy your blog! I think you have a great attitude about all of the negative sides that come with having a successful blog. People will always find things that they don't like- it's not really about you personally.

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  8. Hey! Its not all bad I actually found your blog from browsing around GOMI, and I'm probably not the only one.

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  9. I grew up bullied most of my younger life and though its awful, you just grow a backbone and move on. We need to become strong people and unfortunately it sometimes comes from such ugly experiences like this (it doesnt make it right everrr).

    I will say that I knew who my bullies were but this whole anonymous thing just needs to go. If you got a problem with someone, talk to them directly or at least just be yourself in complaining about them on forums. (Okay, Im just a no fear person when it comes to that stuff) I dont know.. I just dont do fake. Someone slipped my name on there once and it is what it is. Just ignore it. It does make you stronger and a lot more available to those that are in need around you. Come to SF (and dont flake on me again) and lets playyyyy. ((hugs)) :))

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  10. Amen! The only times that criticism hurts is there's actually some truth to it. Other times, just laugh it off! Of course, if you ever figure out how to do that without ever getting hurt by what people say about you, let me know :)

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  11. I still think you should get a GOMI account and write mean things about yourself. Stirring the shit can probably get you traffic. lolz. the internet is a strange place. that's why i don't touch it with a 10 foot pole. You're great, your blog is great, keep having fun with it.

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  12. I get emails all the time about my bad grammar - just like you said, I do not promise to be a writer!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

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  13. As far as I know I've never been on GOMI , but I remember having someone say once "you don't deserve to be offended by ANYONE on the Internet." I try to remember that when I get negative feedback.

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  14. It is BEYOND me why anyone would spend any amount of their time, thinking, reading or discussing blogs that they do not like! When I don't like someone or something I don't waste any time on it. I'm not mean or negative but i certainly don't spend any of my time that i could use to do something productive on something or someone I don't like. Don't worry about it girl! Haters gunna hate!

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  15. AMEN!! I just recently heard of GOMI and had no idea such a thing existed until about two weeks ago. It's kind of a sad space, as most people go to throw around negative, hurtful things. Those are not the people or words I want to be surrounded by - thus, probably the reason I'd never known of it, nor do I plan to spend any time there.
    Love you blog. Keep doing what you do. :)

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  16. I just recently heard about GOMI and was in disbelief that there is actually a whole site dedicated to tearing bloggers down. It's such a complete waste of time. My blog is pretty small so I've never really dealt with that kind of online scrutiny... not sure I could handle it as well as you do lol. You seem to have a really good perspective on it. Keep enjoying your blog and your life, girl! And thanks for visiting my blog! :)

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  17. Love love love this post! Great disclaimer for your blog and great advice on handling criticism.
    xo Dina
    http://www.sweetestsomethings.com

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  18. I just found out about GOMI last night. Read a few posts and got this yucky feeling from all the negativity and hate. I was completely blown away by these people who had nothing better to do than to tear down others. I do NOT have thick skin, and I would not be able to handle it like you do. :) You are awesome!

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  19. I think that the idea of having a place for people to vent that is NOT on your blog is not a bad thing--I'm with you on that. You can learn a lot from it. You know that not everyone is going to like you... it happens. And I'd so much rather have that dislike taken out in a forum where you yourself actually have to take that step to go read it (or not read it!) versus it getting emailed directly to you in the form of a comment on your personal blog post. It's all a choice, just like you mentioned with the two piles. You don't have to read it, and if/when you do I hope you do learn from it. It can be valuable! And about the anonymity? It's good that it's anonymous, I suppose. Then people feel like they can truly be honest, which in turn, will help you learn the most :)

    And ditto... live life offline. That's where all the fun happens :)

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  20. Mature, and big of you to write this! I think you have a healthy perspective, which is why you are such a joy to read.

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  21. I have never heard of "Get Off My Internets" until now.

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  22. Great advice! We just have to as they say in Frozen..."Let it go." :)

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  23. Electronics and the Internet and social media is all so great, but apparently they've become a conduit for real-life cynics and Debbie Downers to compulsively rant and it's apparently okay. I wish your disclaimer was a disclaimer that everyone has to read before they post comments exceeding a certain character count. They'd have to read it and then electronically sign their name before they proceed and post their poop-filled comment. Hate those trolls.

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  24. I have no clue what people could be complaining about with you. You aren't malicious or seeking to hurt others, so why take issue? I know GOMI and know the people they target, and you're nothing like them.

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  25. I LOVE THIS: "At the end of the day it comes down to this; I would much rather be a person who is focusing on trying to be better, and someone that lifts up others. I want to be someone who celebrates those around me, and not someone who is focusing on another's imperfections or flaws." Good for you. If everyone focused more on bettering themselves and being happy for others, the world would be a much more positive place.

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  26. hahah oh that page is a joke! i am so sorry but love what you said. xo

    the well-traveled wife ♥

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  27. Well, I have just wrestled myself out of GOMI and vow to never darken their doors again. I lurked for almost a year and made the mistake of posting. Bad idea. I was trying to fit in with the snarkiness and failed bigtime. I won't bend your ears (or eyes) with the negative goings-on because I refuse to lower myself to their condescending antics. They bullied me. So I left. They are cold-hearted women with waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much time on their hands.

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