Social Media, you can’t live with it and you can’t live without it. OK, that’s just a paraphrase of an old joke, but Social Media has become so entwined in our lives that it’s just a little bit true. And it doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon despite what POTUS seems to think.
One of the biggest drawbacks to Social Media is the “Hater.”
Haters have been around for a long time, even before the Internet. Unfortunately, the Internet and Social Media have made them more visible. Before the Internet, if someone hated a particular writer for example, their only solution was to send them a nasty letter. Or, maybe, send their publisher a nasty letter. Now, the person who hates a writer, actor, or company can blast their complaints aloud in a place where the whole world, or at least the whole of Twitter or Facebook, can see the results.
Hate isn’t always hate; sometimes it’s jealousy. You’re doing better at something than they are, or they would like to have your success and don’t know how to go about it. So they lash out at you. There is something freeing about the anonymity of the Internet that encourages people to say things that they wouldn’t dream of saying in person.
So, what should you do?
First, remind yourself that it’s not as personal as it seems. The hater doesn’t have some sort of vision into your soul that lets them identify your weaknesses and faults so they can tell everyone about it.
Don’t engage! Whatever you do, don’t get into a pissing contest with the hater. The only thing that will do for you is magnify the confrontation and bring it to the attention of more people; people who might not have noticed one or two negative comments will notice a war.
Finally, take a deep breath, and say to yourself: No hard feelings, but…
Then unfollow or unfriend, and then block the hater.
Life goes on!