Friday, October 10, 2014

A Little Etiquette Rant

We try to get our current home projects out on Mondays and Fridays. This week it isn't going to happen. Due to some weird events, I'm now teaching an additional 14 hrs a week (not including the extra grading/prep time). Financially it was a great decision for our family but since this was the first week I'm pooped. 

While this change is a big reason for no real post today, the other big reason is that I'm really bummed over Young House Love deciding to stop blogging. I know they are making the best decision for their family, but they were a huge inspiration to the DIY/Home Improvement community and I really don't think it will be the same without them. I've personally been struggling with the way people choose to speak to one another online and based on the comments I read leading up to YHL break last month, it couldn't have been easy to have to read such negativity. I doubt this was the only reason YHL decided to call it quits and it may not even be one of the reasons but to me it does raise concerns about the etiquette surrounding blogs and comments. 

First some facts:
  • Blog content is generally free to the reader
  • Bloggers will place advertisement on their blog and periodically write sponsored posts or sell products to try and make some money (or in a small group, lots of money)
  • The more traffic a blog gets, the more money it can potentially make
  • The reader has the choice on whether they visit a blog, click on ads and buy products
Now some thoughts:
  • Constructive criticism is awesome. If you have a better way of doing something or know of a better product, it's great to spread that info
  • Comments intentionally designed to hurt someone are not productive. If you feel the desperate need to "hurt" a blogger, just stop visiting. If you want to let someone know you don't like something, there are ways to do that without stooping to the point of name calling, harassing or threatening them or their family (which I have personally witnessed on multiple sites and literally makes my blood boil... ask Nate)
  • If you are mad about somebody making money off of you visiting their site, then don't use Google, don't watch TV and stop shopping in stores because it's the same in all venues. You have the choice of what you buy, what you visit and what you participate in. If you don't like something, stop participating. There is no need to hurt others. I'm positive they aren't hurting you by posting about their house projects, workouts or what they had for dinner.
  • Behind every blog is a real live person. Some may blog as a job, some as a hobby, some so they have a community but regardless of why they do it, they all deserve some empathy, respect for putting themselves out there and some understanding when things aren't perfect. 
I know these thoughts will likely invoke little change in the actions of others but I needed to get it out there. Monday we will return to our normal schedule (we're planning a really cool DIY/Science project for Halloween) and I will return to trying my best to ignore the horribleness the anonymity of the internet brings out in people and when I can't, I'll resort to singing Shake It Off in the car with the windows down.

Cue cute pic of Will to lighten up this post:

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