Damage Control After Nasty Flaming Incident
In my previous entry about why we should all be careful about what we say on our blogs, I mentioned the possibility of sparking off a flaming incident. There are so many things which would set off different kinds of people on the net today. The power of anonymity makes people feel invincible, to say the least. Flaming incidents can be messy, messy times. Sure, it stops after a while, but you’ll most probably be left with hundreds of flame comments to deal with. After all the craziness subsides, you’re faced with a few decisions to make which could affect the future of your blog.
1. To delete or not to delete.
I believe I’ve mentioned this before. When nasty comments make their way into your blog, you’re given the choice whether to delete them or not. Some people consider deletion to be cowardice. But think about it. Leaving those kinds of comments in your blog might encourage similar incidents in the future. Do you really spam to be thrown in the genuine comments?
2. To Address the issue or not.
Another decision to be made is whether to address the issue publicly or not. It might seem something trivial, but it’s actually quite a serious matter. Addressing the issue publicly is feeding the trolls. The more you defend yourself and your stand, the more they attack. NOT addressing the issue publicly means you won’t get to air your side of the story. At least not until the flaming lasts.
3. Apologize to your regulars.
I would recommend explaining and apologizing to your regulars after something like this happens. Your readers are the lifeblood of your blog. Without them, you might as well stand at a makeshift soapbox and preach to crowd which doesn’t even bat an eyelash. I’ve seen people leave popular blogs altogether due to these incidents. And while one regular abandoning a blog is one thing, many doing so at the same time might be catastrophic, especially if your readership is not that wide yet. Also, people will remember you for what happened, but they’ll also remember you for how you reacted to the situation.
4. Continue as if nothing happened.
After the incident, perhaps it might be best to continue as if nothing had happened. Don’t let the situation affect you and in good faith, everything will be back to normal in no time.Mariella
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