It’s no secret that the Internet makes a lot of people very bold when voicing their opinions, and the anonymity and lack of physical confrontation can bring out the worst in some people. The chances of someone saying something downright nasty in your comments is pretty likely, and it seems like more people want to go out of their way to be ruse than to offer a kind word or anything more than the occasional thumbs up. And the unfortunate reality is that even if you get a thousand fans raving about your video, just one cruel comment can leave you feeling self-conscious and down for days. So what do you do about that? Here are some guidelines to get you started with handling negative comments from the bitter side of your following.
What to Do When You Get Negative Comments and When to Take Critique
At one point or another, you’re going to get a negative comment in response to something you post, be it a video or an announcement on social media. These comments range from nitpicking to actual critique (however unwanted), and from jabs at your personal skills to completely unrelated comments about how you look. The easiest thing to do is to just let it roll off your back, ignore it, and move on. The worst thing you could do for most of these responses and is to respond and try to pick a fight. Most negative comments aren’t worth the time it takes to reply to them. If you believe a comment does warrant a response, or that the commenter has mistakenly informed and you need to make a correction before they spread more false information, think your reply out carefully and have friends review it before you post your response. Stay professional and don’t sink to their level. Alternately, someone may be offering genuinely thought out critique for your videos, blog, or content. You should generally welcome critique, but also be sure of yourself and know when to make changes to your channel or blog. You don’t have to adhere to every whim of every fan, but if someone makes an honest and good point about something that could use some work on your part, look into improving on it.
When to Disable Comments
As someone who will rely heavily on gaining popularity and success through the engagement of your audience, disabling comments should be a last resort and it should never be a permanent action. In most cases, this will never be a necessary step. The only time you should really consider this is if your personal safety is under threat and you need to suspend commenting until you can ensure your security again. Remember to be as transparent as possible with your audience. Don’t just switch communication off overnight and expect everyone to know why it happened. If you must temporarily disable communication between yourself and your fans, make an announcement about why and when you expect to return. The better part of your following will likely understand, and this will also keep your fans who don’t follow the drama going on behind the scenes know what is happening and why.