Be Your Best Internet Self in 2017

Anonymous
Be Your Best Internet Self in 2017

Somewhere along the line, some people have gotten it into their heads that the internet is just this dumping ground where they are allowed to be as mean, and as cruel, and as rude as they want...just because. I mean, it's the point of insanity where someone can post a video online of some cute cats, and there are literally full on hate speech style comments...on a cat video! I was actually heartbroken one day when this little 10 year old girl who had cancer was just telling her story about how she was trying to stay positive through treatment, and some of the comments were like, go kill yourself and end it already. Are their really people like that who would care so little as to make comments like that to someone, let alone a child.

I know the majority wouldn't leave comments like that, but I think all of us need to not only be our best selves outside of the internet realm, but carry that through to how we conduct ourselves online. There is nothing wrong with leaving an opinion on something whether you agree with what is said or not, or having a voice, or telling someone what they are saying or doing is wrong, but it's also in how we say it. There is a vast difference between "telling it like it is," and being a complete jerk to someone simply because you are online and feel you are not accountable for your actions.

Be Your Best Internet Self in 2017

I think people forget that there are real people behind those keyboards. Too many people hide behind this idea that everyone just needs to toughen up, but that's merely an excuse for a lot of these people who would leave horrible disgusting comments, to justify their horrible behavior. They feel it's everyone elses fault for having a negative reaction to them being crass, and rude, and saying hateful disgusting things, rather than being accountable for what they are saying and the manner they are saying it because I can almost guarantee the percentage of people IRL who actually talk and act like that outside of their computers is very very tiny. So here are a few tips on being your best internet self for 2017:

1. Leave constructive criticism.

If, for example, someone has asked for opinions on their singing in a video and you think they can't sing well, instead of the super negative, "you suck, and you should quit," try actually analyzing what they are doing. "Good song choice, but you're straining too hard when you sing the high notes, and probably need to drop down to singing the alto part. It might also help if you had a vocal coach as well."

Be Your Best Internet Self in 2017

2. Don't engage in comment wars

If someone just flat out leaves hate filled empty useless comments meant to anger or get a rise out of you, don't respond. These trolls feed off of you responding and the angrier you get, the more they love to engage. You can block them, delete their comments, and/or ignore them. If you keep feeding the trolls, they will literally keep coming back.

3. Leave positive feedback/comments

Even if all the other comments you see are negative and ugly, that doesn't mean you have to jump in and be that way. There may be 100 ugly comments, but that person on the other end, may be encouraged by a positive message you have left for them.

Be Your Best Internet Self in 2017

4. Hang out in more positive internet spaces

If you hang out in real life with negative people all the time, you tend to either become negative yourself or be dragged down all the time by the atmosphere around you. If you are on certain sites or pages online where the negative ugly trolling far outweighs the more thought provoking, interesting, funny, meaningful, and positive comments/people/opinions, then perhaps it's time to move on to a space where there are just nicer people in general. The difference in your online experience can be day and night depending on where you chose to spend your free time.

5. Do talk to people who leave meaningful comments

In the same way you shouldn't respond to outright negativity/hostility, you should respond to constructive and/or positive comments and feedback. You should want to talk to the people who leave you opinions whether they agree/disagree as long as it is not simply a bunch of trolling. If someone says I disagree with you because xyz, and they want to start a dialogue, be a part of that. If someone takes the time to write out a meaningful message, engage with them because odds are they will want to continue talking to you and following you on social media, and you will know that they are there to have a real conversation or say something that isn't trolling or negative for no reason.

Be Your Best Internet Self in 2017
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Most Helpful Girl

  • Hopefuldreamer8
    I don't do it anymore; but when I was teen, I did leave a lot of angry or negative comments. I do regret it now; but when I think about the reasons why I did it, it helps when I see other people do it. I try to understand why they do it. I'm not saying it justifies it because some of the comments are just out of line. I just see them and try to understand a bit better, and do as you say and not engage them.

    For me as a teen, it was because I was bullied so much at school. So leaving angry comments for me was my outlet from the repressed anger I had. Now that I am older, I know that there was a better way for me to do it instead of insulting people online. However, I am not sure if I could get through to my fifteen-year-old self if I went back in time and told her all of this. She was just so full of rage and had no one to talk to about it. Her mother and sister didn't take her seriously and even bullied her as well. I'd like to tell her that eventually she learns to get rid of that rage by writing about it and working out. Although I never told someone to kill them self. I just told them their stories were stupid or something similar.

    At times I do wonder about the ones who are adults who do this. I wonder exactly what it is that's going on in their life to make them angry enough to say some of the things they do. A girl in my area was trying to find a new home for her dog. She was going to college and she had no one to care for him. So many people in the buy and sell comments were attacking her for this. They were talking about what a horrible owner she was (and comments ten times worse) and this was an eighteen year old girl. All these adults were insulting this young woman, and it's hard for me to understand something like that. She wanted to make sure her dog was cared for because her parents didn't have time to take care of a dog. How can someone be so full of rage to say some of the things they did to that young girl?
    Is this still revelant?
    • Anonymous

      Thanks for your comments. I was actually looking at the people I've blocked on this site over the years one day and I noticed that the most of them are under 21, but there are a few who are much much older than that, and it absolutely does make you wonder at what age does one grow and mature enough to know that what they are doing is wrong and/or how is it, someone's peers can interact civilly and others simply cannot.

      Well, like yourself, there could be some outside forces like your personal situation, mental health things, lots of anger or hurt at other situations that one is acting out online, and there is some give there, but for most of us, we know right from wrong and it's just too easy to say that you don't have to live by certain rules or everyone else is whining and should just be tough, but life doesn't work that way. One cannot blame the store owner for you stealing because they had items on the shelf or b/c other people were stealing and therefore they wanted to steal too.

    • Anonymous

      The same goes for online behavior which a lot of people have a tendency to blame their behavior on the world, but act as if they didn't type those words or say hateful, disgusting, vile things. How can it be the fault of someone posting a video about say their love of gardening that you're calling them an expletive. There is no reason behind that that can be justified. We have choices to make online or out and how we represent ourselves and how we treat others, and online or not, golden rule still applies. There is nothing that is preventing one from being kind or constructive in their feedback... absolutely nothing. I want to encourage more people like yourself to see that and to pass that message on and not just use negativity as their standard.

    • Anonymous

      You are proof that you can in fact learn and grow and change. There is no such thing as an impossibility here that others can do the same... just because it's the internet. The internet is filled with regular people all typing away just as we are now.

    • Show All

Most Helpful Guy

  • Alexcc
    It's so easy to hide behind our internet persona, and we do forget that behind the keyboards are people, with real feelings, hopefully we will all be mindful of what we say, thank you for what you wrote

    Ps: would it surprise you to know my name name is not "Alex"? Hahaha
    Is this still revelant?
    • Anonymous

      Ha, not in the slightest!

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What Girls & Guys Said

49
  • TheLuckyPizzaDog
    I hate to break it to you, but the internet has /always/ been the dumping ground for asshole behavior. It's why they used to always warn people away from the internet, and go socialize with real people.
    • Anonymous

      ... but then that begs the question... do you have to be an a-hole just because other people are. There are plenty of people who leave comments and opinions and feedback in a constructive or positive way. People use the... well everyone else is doing it excuse as if it justifies their own negative behavior, and yet here you've left a comment that has nothing to do with you being negative or trolling, so "normal" non trolling people do exist and can have conversations. I don't live in a fantasy where I believe the entire internet can be a wholesome place... that's never going to happen, but this is about being YOUR best self, even if others aren't.

  • loneman
    I've had people tell me: "On the Internet you got to have thick skin." I understand but we all have feelings. And sometimes depending on the day or whatever those feelings get hurt more easily than others. I've never seen the point in writing anything negative to someone even if I don't agree with them. Sadly there are somethings that set me off, and I got to leave and take a deep breath.
    • Anonymous

      That quote to me is like saying to a shop owner, hey, if you don't want people to steal, don't stock any merchandise on your shelves. There is no accountability on the part of the person stealing or in this case, leaving hateful comments. In the same vein it is also like saying, well other people steal, so why shouldn't I? As an adult, you know right from wrong and you know trolling, bigotry, sexism, hatred, racism, etc. are wrong and yet, if we flip through someone's online comments, it might boggle the mind what they've written. Who's fault is that? Certainly not the innocent person posting a video or just talking about their day online. I think it's important we all take a step back and look at the people we are and what we represent. Even as you say there are some things that set you off, you know a way to cope is for you to take a deep breath or walk off. There are far more options that just being nasty just because. Thanks for your comments.

    • loneman

      Yeah I don't know... I watched several documentaries about this sort of thing. It interests me because I've been into computer tech since I was in the 6th grade. I also build computers as a hobby. Last year, I learned from a documentary that it was hackers who started all of this computer/on line community stuff. Back then hackers weren't bad people who was trying to steal your identity. But they were socially awkward nerds. The on line flaming and probably some of the trolling started before the World Wide Web. It was during the BBS days. For some reason the attitude has continued and has even gotten worse, on places like youtube. There is a guy called computing forever He talked in one of his videos about how he didn't realize just how bad people were until He started talking to people online. I think the sad reality is these people are really jerks, they just don't show you in real life because they know they will get into trouble.

    • loneman

      Note: I took Electronics in vocational school. Most of the guys were jerks. No Girl wanted to even be in the class. It always surprised me that some of these guys had girl friends. Because putting a girl in the class was like throwing meat to a bunch of piranhas. I wasn't like them and I got picked on really bad and my stuff smashed.

    • Show All
  • enis_Penvy
    Trying to teach good manners to people on the internet is like trying to tell a hungry tiger not to eat the food in front of him. It doesn't work very well because although good people are on the internet at times, not so good people are on it more.
    • Anonymous

      I think we should try to avoid this hive collective internet mentality of "everyone does it," therefore that equates to you personally having to do the trolling or negative behaviors. That simply isn't true. You and everyone else has free will to not troll, to leave constructive comments, etc. If you are just as aware that the internet is full of bad people, you are just as aware that it is full of good people too, and sometimes the good feel like they have to become the bad because of that mentality, but just as in real life situations, we have choices in how we behave and conduct ourselves, it's only a manner of which internet person will you be today... food for thought for that "hungry tiger."

    • enis_Penvy

      That's not what I said - at no time did I say "everyone does it".
      My point was - there are people on the internet who do not engage in this behavior, but there just as many that do. I never said that have us an excuse to behave like they did, my point was changing said behavior will be difficult if not impossible.
      If someone doesn't engage in it they don't have to change

    • Robin48

      You are correct. I was not brought up with gender basis remarks. I find the female can be nasty, gross, and very insulting to others. Each person has the right to be here. They have the right to share their feeling, view, knowledge on subject. I know many are not here for this. They here to have drama, insult others. Many are dealing with person issuse. I have seen it in most media site that women are the rugs of all. They love to tell people off, insult them. Name calling. We have people on here who are ADA people. They need to show respect for them.

    • Show All
  • Outofthegrey
    I always strive to be my worst self on the internet, it's both entertaining and stress relieving. I'd much rather act like this on here than in real life where you can get punched for telling someone to go sodomize themselves with a tobasco coated cactus.
  • jman46241
    Ok, I'm really confused as to why you posted this as anonymous.. I agree with most of what you said, and I will tell you what I don't agree with and why in exchange.
    • Anonymous

      I'm anon because I prefer to be anon. We are all anon online with no way of verifying for sure that the pictures one posts are real, or the names and info one posts are real, even if one says they are real. I simply prefer to let my words speak for themselves. People often assume everyone who goes anon is out to troll, but far from it. Since the dawn of literature, authors, especially female authors, have written under pseudonyms.

    • jman46241

      That's what I'm saying basically.. We are already anonymous to a degree, so to me the extra layer is kind of funny. It's just because it's a take about the internet lol. I don't assume anon posters are necessary out to troll, some people just don't want to be associated with some of the things that they post and of course there's nothing wrong with that. Yes lol, I do know that a lot of authors have written under pseudonyms or pen names.. Anyway thanks for answering.

  • bloodmountain1990
    I'm only mean to someone if they're mean to me or call them out on their shit if they say something stupid, offensive, racist, etc.
  • abundantlyrich
    The day will come when tragedy hits them to help them learn a lesson about their words on others.

    If you are feeling bullied, fucked up cos you can't get what others are getting, mentally ill, sexually abused and feeling hateful of the world for not giving in to your childish whims... Newsflash, go see a therapist. The internet forum is a place to exchange ideas and info. It's a not mental dumping ground for your selfish ego. Have some grace and do something constructive for yourself instead.
  • KittyBox
    I'm only sarcastic when the question is stupid, otherwise I'm generally more friendly.
  • cupidkisses
    i will be positive all the time , nice one
  • lazermazer
    Nice read
  • Anonymous
    so basically, keep being yourself?
  • Anonymous
    or better from 2017 dont have an internet character. get off the fucking computer and live the real life in the real world... .
  • Anonymous
    I never trolled or said mean things online before until coming on this website. Then after encountering people on here, with the way they've acted, I've trolled plenty.
    • Robin48

      Many people get on social media to insult and love to dramatics things. Many people are dealing with personal issues. Many are disfunction. They have no respect for other or for their self. There are people on social media who ADA people who try to to socialize and share with others. They have limitation in vision or hearing or not able to type as good. They trying their best than you have the others who are so nasty, and gross to them.

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