Defend or walk away

One of the biggest questions most businesses have about social media is what you should do when someone posts something negative about you.

This could be a tweet, a Facebook status update, a mention in a LinkedIn group, a blog post, a video response to one of your YouTube videos – basically, anywhere where there’s a chance to post something, there’s the possibility of a negative mention.

So the question is – when do you respond, and when do you walk away? And can responding – even to something you feel you need to – cause more (potential) damage than not responding?

Sticks and Stones

It’s a simple fact of life – no-one is going to like everything you do. Even your most fanatical evangelists will get pissed off at something you do or say. There’s an old saying that if you don’t upset at least one person, you’re not doing it right (whatever “it” might be).

So when a negative comment is made about you, you then have a decision to make – do you respond, or ignore (based on relevance and approach of the negativity)? And if you do respond, what tone do you take?

It’s not an easy call – just ask Nestle’s PR team that was running their Facebook wall a little while back. By ignoring, you could be perceived as not caring, or taking criticism seriously enough.

Then again, by responding defensively, you could be seen in an even worse light by those that see your response. And if even the “experts” get it “wrong”, then it just goes to show how difficult it can be.

Criticizing Criticism – Adding to the Fire?

Take Jay Baer. Jay’s a guy I respect immensely, and is one of the smarter folks on the social media circuit. Jay’s just released his first book The Now Revolution (co-authored with Amber Naslund).

As part of the promotional outreach, Jay and Amber gave away a number of books to bloggers to review. Many have been positive, but one that popped up on my radar was the review posted by Jay Dolan over at The Anti-Social Media. Jay’s blog was named as one of the Top 10 Social Media Blogs of 2011, and has a very irreverent look at social media.

Wonder bloggers by Jay DolanJay’s review, entitled 8 Reasons You Don’t Need to Read The Now Revolution, was a mix of what he liked about the book and – as the title suggests – eight reasons he wasn’t a fan.

These included comparing the book to an overlong blog post collection; bad grammar; and questionable images for reference points. It’s partly satire and partly a serious overview of what Jay sees wrong with the book, in typical Jay Dolan fashion.

Both Jay Baer and Amber responded to Jay Dolan’s criticism via the post’s comments, but in different ways, and this is where it gets a little interesting for anyone wondering how those that consult on social media respond when criticized.

While Amber offers to discuss in more detail by email, Jay chooses to respond in the comments. Here are a couple of quotes below:

“On the grammar and writing side, I’ll only say that the praise for that component of the book has been universal, except here. You may be a particularly exacting judge of written communication, and evidently we’ve fallen short of your benchmark.

Given that there were parts of the book that you liked, and given that indeed the book is not intended for “social media people” but rather for business people, it seems a bit unfair to slap a “8 reasons you don’t need to read the now revolution” headline on this post. But, if you want to accentuate the negative to generate clicks, that’s a choice YOU made.”

As I say at the beginning of the post, I like and respect Jay Baer – but I wonder if the responses above were the best way to respond to the review?

Defense or Defensive?

As a few people in the comments of the post have picked up, Jay’s comment comes across as defensive overall (although he does temper that with points on where he agrees with the post). From the comments section:

  • Morgan: “…defending your work is like saying I made a mistake, now I must explain myself. His work will either speak for itself or it won’t.
  • Grayson: “If you have so many great reviews, why are you so concerned about one negative one? It is an opinion and there are many people who will read your book just to see if they agree. They will then decide for themselves.”
  • Bob LeDrew: “You guys had 224 pages to make your arguments. I don’t know that you need to make two separate replies to Jay D’s 1200 words of review. Let the book stand or fall on its merits and on the readers’ responses, sez me.”
  • Dean: “Is there a Chapter in the book on “when” to respond to a negative review from a blogger so as not to make a mountain out of a molehill? Seems you’ve just unnecessarily started a more visible spitting match and elevated his stature by lowering yours.”

Perhaps the reason a few of the comments have questioned Jay’s response is that if social media has taught us nothing else, the “wrong” response can soon get out of control.

I can understand Jay’s protection of his baby (I did the same thing a couple of years back with 12for12k), but the perceived defensiveness of his comment has perhaps put him in a less than flattering light. Which is the opposite of what Jay is, from what I’ve seen from my interactions with him.

Maybe Jay was having a bad day. I’ve had Jay respond to some questions on this blog and he’s always been personable (even when I’ve been a bit playful). The problem is, bad days can have an impact on a person or brand if it’s shared in public.

Feedback is a natural part of having something for public consumption. We all get it; we all deal with it differently on any given day. It’s not always easy to hold your tongue when something you care so deeply about is questioned.

Like I say, Jay’s a good guy, and maybe this was just a bad day reaction. But sometimes you need to just walk away when the question of defending yourself arises.

For businesses, it’s a hard line to manage. For consultants offering advice on how to walk that line, it’s probably even more important to make sure your line is how you’d advise clients.

What line would you have taken?

image: Mubina H
image: Jay Dolan

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223 comments
Rick LaPoint
Rick LaPoint

Hi Danny,

I read this post last week but didn't feel the need to add anything.

But I came back today to add my two cents after I got snarked by another site. I did some Technical thing on my own site differently than they believe it should be done.

They basically told all their readers that I didn't know what I was doing, and even left a comment on my site a few days prior to inform me of their plans.

OY, some people's kids ;-)

I thought about simply letting it go, but I decided to leave them a comment once they had published, logically stating my reasons for doing it the way I did.

But it was a tough decision.

Whenever I can, I try to be gracious about things and keep the glass half full. I'm always open to debate an issue, but I also know that many are a waste of time.

I finally decided the situation called for a simple and unemotional response, since my professional competence was openly being called into question before an audience of significant size.

A strictly personal attack, I would have left alone. Attempts at defense is those situations can quickly deteriorate, so I believe they should be avoided if possible.

And you know, I'm still asking myself if I should have simply ignored it, as I second-guess about which course of action demonstrates more "weakness," or, greater character.

Anyway, I'll thanks for the session. I'll get off your couch now :-)

Rick

Rick LaPoint
Rick LaPoint

Hi Danny, I read this post last week but didn't feel the need to add anything. But I came back today to add my two cents after I got snarked by another site. I did some Technical thing on my own site differently than they believe it should be done. They basically told all their readers that I didn't know what I was doing, and even left a comment on my site a few days prior to inform me of their plans. OY, some people's kids ;-) I thought about simply letting it go, but I decided to leave them a comment once they had published, logically stating my reasons for doing it the way I did. But it was a tough decision. Whenever I can, I try to be gracious about things and keep the glass half full. I'm always open to debate an issue, but I also know that many are a waste of time. I finally decided the situation called for a simple and unemotional response, since my professional competence was openly being called into question before an audience of significant size. A strictly personal attack, I would have left alone. Attempts at defense is those situations can quickly deteriorate, so I believe they should be avoided if possible. And you know, I'm still asking myself if I should have simply ignored it, as I second-guess about which course of action demonstrates more "weakness," or, greater character. Anyway, I'll thanks for the session. I'll get off your couch now :-) Rick

Danny
Danny

Hey there mate, Glad you came back and shared your example. I think I'd have done exactly the same in your shoes - often a reasoned and broken down response is exactly what's needed. Like you say, often the more personal "attacks" are better left untouched (something I did last year when I had a whole Tumblr community come after me, hehe). Not easy, and I'm sure there'll be more examples to come. Cheers as always, Rick.

Rick LaPoint
Rick LaPoint

Hi Danny,

I read this post last week but didn't feel the need to add anything.

But I came back today to add my two cents after I got snarked by another site. I did some Technical thing on my own site differently than they believe it should be done.

They basically told all their readers that I didn't know what I was doing, and even left a comment on my site a few days prior to inform me of their plans.

OY, some people's kids ;-)

I thought about simply letting it go, but I decided to leave them a comment once they had published, logically stating my reasons for doing it the way I did.

But it was a tough decision.

Whenever I can, I try to be gracious about things and keep the glass half full. I'm always open to debate an issue, but I also know that many are a waste of time.

I finally decided the situation called for a simple and unemotional response, since my professional competence was openly being called into question before an audience of significant size.

A strictly personal attack, I would have left alone. Attempts at defense is those situations can quickly deteriorate, so I believe they should be avoided if possible.

And you know, I'm still asking myself if I should have simply ignored it, as I second-guess about which course of action demonstrates more "weakness," or, greater character.

Anyway, I'll thanks for the session. I'll get off your couch now :-)

Rick

Danny
Danny

Hey there mate,

Glad you came back and shared your example. I think I'd have done exactly the same in your shoes - often a reasoned and broken down response is exactly what's needed.

Like you say, often the more personal "attacks" are better left untouched (something I did last year when I had a whole Tumblr community come after me, hehe).

Not easy, and I'm sure there'll be more examples to come.

Cheers as always, Rick.

Jay Baer
Jay Baer

It's a good question, and an interesting tale. For the record, I wasn't having a bad day, and if my comment on the original post came off as defensive, I make no apologies, as I was in fact defending the book.

Clearly, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I felt the review was petty and unfair. Que sera.

In terms of how we should have handled it, we have an entire section of the The Now Revolution devoted to the subject, and we followed our own playbook. You always respond, because it shows you're listening and that you care. You don't get dragged down into a multi-post back and forth, because you can never win.

Which is why I didn't respond to the the follow up comments on the original post, or here. I had my turn at bat, and I moved onward.

Danny
Danny

Hi Jay,

Thanks for dropping by, sir. Agreed, everyone is different (and like you say in your reply to my comment with Marcus earlier, there's no one-size-fits-all).

Just curious on your preference for the "open" version versus the closed gate one that Amber took? Obviously you're both the authors that the post took "umbrage" with - is there a specific reason there were two different responses and approaches?

Cheers, mate.

Jay Baer
Jay Baer

It probably seems like Amber and I were playing good cop/bad cop in the comments, but we actually posted at the same time, and didn't see each other's comments until they were live.

Amber handled it the way companies should handle it. Which is appropriate, because she works for a company and what she does online reflects upon her employer too.

I'm not in that situation, so I can ramp up the pissiness quotient if necessary.

Jay Baer
Jay Baer

It probably seems like Amber and I were playing good cop/bad cop in the comments, but we actually posted at the same time, and didn't see each other's comments until they were live.

Amber handled it the way companies should handle it. Which is appropriate, because she works for a company and what she does online reflects upon her employer too.

I'm not in that situation, so I can ramp up the pissiness quotient if necessary.

Jay Baer
Jay Baer

It's a good question, and an interesting tale. For the record, I wasn't having a bad day, and if my comment on the original post came off as defensive, I make no apologies, as I was in fact defending the book.

Clearly, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I felt the review was petty and unfair. Que sera.

In terms of how we should have handled it, we have an entire section of the The Now Revolution devoted to the subject, and we followed our own playbook. You always respond, because it shows you're listening and that you care. You don't get dragged down into a multi-post back and forth, because you can never win.

Which is why I didn't respond to the the follow up comments on the original post, or here. I had my turn at bat, and I moved onward.

Jay Baer
Jay Baer

It's a good question, and an interesting tale. For the record, I wasn't having a bad day, and if my comment on the original post came off as defensive, I make no apologies, as I was in fact defending the book. Clearly, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I felt the review was petty and unfair. Que sera. In terms of how we should have handled it, we have an entire section of the The Now Revolution devoted to the subject, and we followed our own playbook. You always respond, because it shows you're listening and that you care. You don't get dragged down into a multi-post back and forth, because you can never win. Which is why I didn't respond to the the follow up comments on the original post, or here. I had my turn at bat, and I moved onward.

Danny
Danny

Hi Jay, Thanks for dropping by, sir. Agreed, everyone is different (and like you say in your reply to my comment with Marcus earlier, there's no one-size-fits-all). Just curious on your preference for the "open" version versus the closed gate one that Amber took? Obviously you're both the authors that the post took "umbrage" with - is there a specific reason there were two different responses and approaches? Cheers, mate.

Jay Baer
Jay Baer

It probably seems like Amber and I were playing good cop/bad cop in the comments, but we actually posted at the same time, and didn't see each other's comments until they were live. Amber handled it the way companies should handle it. Which is appropriate, because she works for a company and what she does online reflects upon her employer too. I'm not in that situation, so I can ramp up the pissiness quotient if necessary.

Chris@Reputation Defense Online
Chris@Reputation Defense Online

Hi Danny:

We work with people defending their online reputation so can kind of give you our rule of thumb.

If a comment or post or blatant attack is a matter of opinion, there is almost no way to win by "countering it". As some other people here have stated, thanking them for their insight and moving on probably would have been the best bet.

However, what is happening way too often right now is also getting made up reviews from absolutely false information. The bad news is that this kind of thing can be devastating. That is the kind of thing that has to be fought or else one competitor or "hater" can just destroy a business. As an example, just saw a case come in where someone set up 4,000 blogs going against a business. As you said above, it is crazy times out there.

Danny
Danny

Hey there Chris,

Thanks for sharing your insights, mate, appreciate it.

I'd heard of anti-blogs being set up; but never to the extent of 4,000 of the buggers. Wow - guess someone really wants to ruin someone else's business...

Crazy, indeed.

Chris@Reputation Defense Online
Chris@Reputation Defense Online

Hi Danny:

We work with people defending their online reputation so can kind of give you our rule of thumb.

If a comment or post or blatant attack is a matter of opinion, there is almost no way to win by "countering it". As some other people here have stated, thanking them for their insight and moving on probably would have been the best bet.

However, what is happening way too often right now is also getting made up reviews from absolutely false information. The bad news is that this kind of thing can be devastating. That is the kind of thing that has to be fought or else one competitor or "hater" can just destroy a business. As an example, just saw a case come in where someone set up 4,000 blogs going against a business. As you said above, it is crazy times out there.

Chris@Reputation Defense Online
Chris@Reputation Defense Online

Hi Danny: We work with people defending their online reputation so can kind of give you our rule of thumb. If a comment or post or blatant attack is a matter of opinion, there is almost no way to win by "countering it". As some other people here have stated, thanking them for their insight and moving on probably would have been the best bet. However, what is happening way too often right now is also getting made up reviews from absolutely false information. The bad news is that this kind of thing can be devastating. That is the kind of thing that has to be fought or else one competitor or "hater" can just destroy a business. As an example, just saw a case come in where someone set up 4,000 blogs going against a business. As you said above, it is crazy times out there.

Danny
Danny

Hey there Chris, Thanks for sharing your insights, mate, appreciate it. I'd heard of anti-blogs being set up; but never to the extent of 4,000 of the buggers. Wow - guess someone really wants to ruin someone else's business... Crazy, indeed.

Wes Towers
Wes Towers

Reading the comments here took more time than reading the post (article, content, piece) itself ;) But, I enjoyed every minute of it. And, although I am not much about leaving negative comments, I always believe that we should bask in the praises and learn from the criticisms. I know this may be hard to do, especially if it concerns a brainchild of ours, but we have to always remember that we could not please everyone. So, if we read a critique or review that we do not like, then it is best if we walk away and say nothing at all. Then, come back later, when we have simmered down a bit, and say something like, "will keep your suggestions in mind next time". :)

Danny
Danny

I'm always reminded of the "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything" phrase, Wes. Thing is, though, sometimes the non-nice thing (if constructive) can lead to something even better down the line.

Even negative remarks can have validity - something that a lot of folks miss.

Cheers for dropping by, Wes, look forward to chatting more. :)

Danny
Danny

I'm always reminded of the "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything" phrase, Wes. Thing is, though, sometimes the non-nice thing (if constructive) can lead to something even better down the line.

Even negative remarks can have validity - something that a lot of folks miss.

Cheers for dropping by, Wes, look forward to chatting more. :)

Wes Towers
Wes Towers

Reading the comments here took more time than reading the post (article, content, piece) itself ;) But, I enjoyed every minute of it. And, although I am not much about leaving negative comments, I always believe that we should bask in the praises and learn from the criticisms. I know this may be hard to do, especially if it concerns a brainchild of ours, but we have to always remember that we could not please everyone. So, if we read a critique or review that we do not like, then it is best if we walk away and say nothing at all. Then, come back later, when we have simmered down a bit, and say something like, "will keep your suggestions in mind next time". :)

Danny
Danny

I'm always reminded of the "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything" phrase, Wes. Thing is, though, sometimes the non-nice thing (if constructive) can lead to something even better down the line. Even negative remarks can have validity - something that a lot of folks miss. Cheers for dropping by, Wes, look forward to chatting more. :)

Ingrid Abboud
Ingrid Abboud

Hey Danny,

I have one word to how I handle anyone or anything negative that comes my way - DIPLOMACY!

That's just how I see it. If it's constructive criticism - then I'm happy to hear it - maybe it will help me. If it's not - then I try to breathe in and out before I unleash the friendly dragon lol.

I learned that staying polite and remaining calm (as much as you can - although it's incredibly hard)go a long way.

I may be wrong - but that's just my character. Not to say that I've never lost composure - but I do my best not to.

I love this piece Danny. It's a post that everyone should read!

Cheers Bonsai Boy

Danny
Danny

I think a lot of folks could learn from your approach, Ingrid.

An example - the post that our mutual friend Brankica wrote about Market Me Suite. Was it a harsh post? Yes, but then that's the point - why be kind when the product (in Brankica's eyes) was crap?

Harsh or not, when Tammy the Market Me Suite CEO got involved, her tone and response completely put me off MMS. So someone criticized your product - is that really an excuse to call that person sad?

So, yeah, Tammy did MMS more harm than Brankica's post ever could. If only she'd counted to ten, then replied.

Ah well... ;-)

Ingrid Abboud
Ingrid Abboud

Hey Danny, I have one word to how I handle anyone or anything negative that comes my way - DIPLOMACY! That's just how I see it. If it's constructive criticism - then I'm happy to hear it - maybe it will help me. If it's not - then I try to breathe in and out before I unleash the friendly dragon lol. I learned that staying polite and remaining calm (as much as you can - although it's incredibly hard)go a long way. I may be wrong - but that's just my character. Not to say that I've never lost composure - but I do my best not to. I love this piece Danny. It's a post that everyone should read! Cheers Bonsai Boy

Danny
Danny

I think a lot of folks could learn from your approach, Ingrid. An example - the post that our mutual friend Brankica wrote about Market Me Suite. Was it a harsh post? Yes, but then that's the point - why be kind when the product (in Brankica's eyes) was crap? Harsh or not, when Tammy the Market Me Suite CEO got involved, her tone and response completely put me off MMS. So someone criticized your product - is that really an excuse to call that person sad? So, yeah, Tammy did MMS more harm than Brankica's post ever could. If only she'd counted to ten, then replied. Ah well... ;-)

Brankica
Brankica

Wow, I wish authors of a product I recently reviewed read this. All they did was threaten to sue and talk trash to me. Called me a liar but never tried to say what did I write that was a lie.

You write a bad review about something you don't think is good and they come down on you like crazy.

I don't think any serious company should react in a negative manner when it comes to costumer, no matter what it in question.

Danny
Danny

Just read your post, and the comments that followed, Brankica - that Tammy really showed her company in a great light, huh? ;-)

For the record, I bought MMS too on the recommendations of others, and thought it was a waste. Oh well, live and learn.

Brankica
Brankica

Wow, I wish authors of a product I recently reviewed read this. All they did was threaten to sue and talk trash to me. Called me a liar but never tried to say what did I write that was a lie.

You write a bad review about something you don't think is good and they come down on you like crazy.

I don't think any serious company should react in a negative manner when it comes to costumer, no matter what it in question.

Brankica
Brankica

Wow, I wish authors of a product I recently reviewed read this. All they did was threaten to sue and talk trash to me. Called me a liar but never tried to say what did I write that was a lie. You write a bad review about something you don't think is good and they come down on you like crazy. I don't think any serious company should react in a negative manner when it comes to costumer, no matter what it in question.

Danny
Danny

Just read your post, and the comments that followed, Brankica - that Tammy really showed her company in a great light, huh? ;-) For the record, I bought MMS too on the recommendations of others, and thought it was a waste. Oh well, live and learn.

Lisa
Lisa

Danny:

This is my first time here and I have to say, LOVIN' it. This post was just what I needed to read as I have been monitoring a situation very similar to the one described above. I am not involved in the situation, but it was a situation over a very negative review of a product. Both owners replied to the bloggers post and just as above, one was gracious and one was fierce.

Unfortunately, both owners got back lash from the other commentators. It almost felt as if it became a no win situation.

I think you presented this argument very well. Glad NittyGriddy sent me this way.

cheers,
Lisa

Danny
Danny

Hi there Lisa,

Definitely interesting to see how two different voices respond to the same criticism, and how these comments are responded to themselves. Like you say, it can lead to a no-win situation, as opposed to stepping outside the heat and maybe diffusing it with humour or a quick, "Thank anyway" and walking away.

I guess I better buy Ingrid a drink or something for pointing you this way - look forward to seeing you around more, hopefully. :)

Lisa
Lisa

Danny:

This is my first time here and I have to say, LOVIN' it. This post was just what I needed to read as I have been monitoring a situation very similar to the one described above. I am not involved in the situation, but it was a situation over a very negative review of a product. Both owners replied to the bloggers post and just as above, one was gracious and one was fierce.

Unfortunately, both owners got back lash from the other commentators. It almost felt as if it became a no win situation.

I think you presented this argument very well. Glad NittyGriddy sent me this way.

cheers,
Lisa

Lisa
Lisa

Danny: This is my first time here and I have to say, LOVIN' it. This post was just what I needed to read as I have been monitoring a situation very similar to the one described above. I am not involved in the situation, but it was a situation over a very negative review of a product. Both owners replied to the bloggers post and just as above, one was gracious and one was fierce. Unfortunately, both owners got back lash from the other commentators. It almost felt as if it became a no win situation. I think you presented this argument very well. Glad NittyGriddy sent me this way. cheers, Lisa

Danny
Danny

Hi there Lisa, Definitely interesting to see how two different voices respond to the same criticism, and how these comments are responded to themselves. Like you say, it can lead to a no-win situation, as opposed to stepping outside the heat and maybe diffusing it with humour or a quick, "Thank anyway" and walking away. I guess I better buy Ingrid a drink or something for pointing you this way - look forward to seeing you around more, hopefully. :)

Brian McDonald
Brian McDonald

Danny, great analysis of how to respond. The one thing about social media that I'm starting to dislike is that we keep telling people to comment, post, engage, etc. and when they do at times others want to say, "Why are justifying...?"

One of the biggest challenges with social media is we don't know where bloggers, are coming from in terms of their background, experience and subject matter expertise. Sometimes you can get a huge following from being first to market, or being snarky. That always does not translate into having the background and real world experience to make definitive statements or opinions.

Danny
Danny

The visibility factor is definitely something people need to consider, Brian. It doesn't matter how "small" you are - Google can level everyone to the same audience, with just a little bit of SEO and the right social share at the right time.

Interesting times indeed...

Brian McDonald
Brian McDonald

Danny, great analysis of how to respond. The one thing about social media that I'm starting to dislike is that we keep telling people to comment, post, engage, etc. and when they do at times others want to say, "Why are justifying...?"

One of the biggest challenges with social media is we don't know where bloggers, are coming from in terms of their background, experience and subject matter expertise. Sometimes you can get a huge following from being first to market, or being snarky. That always does not translate into having the background and real world experience to make definitive statements or opinions.

Brian McDonald
Brian McDonald

Danny, great analysis of how to respond. The one thing about social media that I'm starting to dislike is that we keep telling people to comment, post, engage, etc. and when they do at times others want to say, "Why are justifying...?" One of the biggest challenges with social media is we don't know where bloggers, are coming from in terms of their background, experience and subject matter expertise. Sometimes you can get a huge following from being first to market, or being snarky. That always does not translate into having the background and real world experience to make definitive statements or opinions.

Danny
Danny

The visibility factor is definitely something people need to consider, Brian. It doesn't matter how "small" you are - Google can level everyone to the same audience, with just a little bit of SEO and the right social share at the right time. Interesting times indeed...

Jamey Burrell
Jamey Burrell

Danny,

I'll admit, one of my biggest weaknesses/strengths is being comfortable with confrontation. I'll gladly step up to defend my (insert noun) when it is being bad mouthed or put into danger. However, I worked at a bar in college, and I quickly learned the value of distinguishing between threats (guys hanging around looking for trouble) and loud-mouths (guys that talked big but wouldn't dare throw a punch). The latter were easy to handle. Let them leave quietly and problem was solved.

The same goes for business and life. Allow the argument or disagreement to fizzle by not adding fuel yourself. A few other comments echo my sentiment -- acknowledge Jay's points, thank him for the review, and perhaps propose to take his points into consideration with a future book.

Then again, I was not in that unique position, so it's easy to asses as an armchair quarterback with nothing on the line. I did write a post similar to this (in lesser magnitude) back in November regarding my response to a critic to our business. http://www.lifeasanexperiment.com/2011/01/05/illegitimi-non-carborundum/

Thanks for a great discussion worthy post, Danny. Have a wonderful weekend!
Jamey

Danny
Danny

The bar analogy is a funny one, Jamey - it's always the loudest who back it up the least, too. ;-)

Like you say, most things fizzle out through their own accord. Unless you add fuel, of course...

Look forward to checking out your post, mate.

Danny
Danny

The bar analogy is a funny one, Jamey - it's always the loudest who back it up the least, too. ;-)

Like you say, most things fizzle out through their own accord. Unless you add fuel, of course...

Look forward to checking out your post, mate.

Jamey Burrell
Jamey Burrell

Danny, I'll admit, one of my biggest weaknesses/strengths is being comfortable with confrontation. I'll gladly step up to defend my (insert noun) when it is being bad mouthed or put into danger. However, I worked at a bar in college, and I quickly learned the value of distinguishing between threats (guys hanging around looking for trouble) and loud-mouths (guys that talked big but wouldn't dare throw a punch). The latter were easy to handle. Let them leave quietly and problem was solved. The same goes for business and life. Allow the argument or disagreement to fizzle by not adding fuel yourself. A few other comments echo my sentiment -- acknowledge Jay's points, thank him for the review, and perhaps propose to take his points into consideration with a future book. Then again, I was not in that unique position, so it's easy to asses as an armchair quarterback with nothing on the line. I did write a post similar to this (in lesser magnitude) back in November regarding my response to a critic to our business. http://www.lifeasanexperiment.com/2011/01/05/illegitimi-non-carborundum/ Thanks for a great discussion worthy post, Danny. Have a wonderful weekend! Jamey

Danny
Danny

The bar analogy is a funny one, Jamey - it's always the loudest who back it up the least, too. ;-) Like you say, most things fizzle out through their own accord. Unless you add fuel, of course... Look forward to checking out your post, mate.

Antonia
Antonia

Hey Danny, what a fantastic post. I've fallen short of commenting lately but I just needed on this one because my opinion on this subject is twofold. I believe there is constructive criticism and then there's criticism. I remember when I wrote the guest post for you something happened I didn't expect: someone actually slammed me in the comment section. It was the first time that ever happened to me and it taught me a big lesson.

Being a person with a bit of a temper at times, all I wanted to do is know who the person is and tell him off. I held back at the time because it wasn't the time or place but it bugged me immensely on the inside.

Since then however, I've changed my opinion. I choose to not respond to comments that are unfounded. Neither do I respond if I feel like me writing a response at that moment in time would result in me being perceived as snappy. That's why in this particular case, I prefer Amber's approach. But of course there are also those posts that don't even warrant a response.

Sometimes we just have to be the bigger person. As hard as it may be. Different people. Different opinions.

Danny
Danny

Ah yes, I recall that little incident well, Antonia - nice to see folks in the comments section take up the bat for you. :)

I'm in the same boat as you - I usually just let the comments (or blog posts) slide, maybe jump in with a friendly thank you, and let the heat cool down.

I've seen raging wars in the comments at times, but ignorance is a great settler. ;-)

Davina K. Brewer
Davina K. Brewer

"Ignorance is a great settler." Would that were always true Danny. I've seen people not only with their own opinions but their own "facts" too. So those who agree w/ one point will recognize the ignorance and not bother. Others who are so sure they are "right" and ignorant of their ignorance.. well I need to be like Antonia, be a bigger person and rise above, get better at ignoring. Kinda like watching some of the "news." FWIW.

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