Spam, insensitive comments and other annoying stuff

Warning: This is sort of a rant. This is me, venting out.

Regular readers of mine might be wondering about my radio silence today. I just took the best part of my Sunday (my only day off) to clean out the spam and trash folders of my blog. I managed to rescue many of your comments that had been lodged there for several days altogether. I don’t know why WordPress gets it wrong when it comes to spam. Anyway, I have rescued all your comments. Also, I am making a mental resolution to check my spam and trash folders everyday… from today onwards.. hopefully!

I came across many comments that were rightly classified as spam, These include but are not limited to:

  • Shamelessly self-promoting their blog through comments on my blog without even a single reference to my posts:

Dear spammers, please know that each blog post is published with a lot of effort and care. It is downright insulting to any blogger when you use their comments section just to drop your links without even reading the said post. Don’t get me wrong. There’s a difference between leaving a thoughtful comment about my post with a request to drop by your blog, and simply dropping a link to your posts in the comments. Earlier, I used to call out many of them but now I have decided to go ahead and delete such comments. They don’t deserve to be there. Call me out if I’m wrong. The comments section is all yours.

  • The follow for follow culture:

This December, I will reach my six-year milestone in the blogosphere. And I have come across a lot of people who simply follow multiple blogs in a single day just for the purpose of gaining followers. I try to check back on almost everybody who follows me. But recently, time constraints have kept me from doing so. But I think that bombarding any blog with huge number of “likes” and a follow just for the sake of getting a “follow back” is too insincere. If you genuinely like a blog, you should follow it. There shouldn’t be any ulterior motive!

  • Leaving insensitive and absolutely random feedback:

I get it, the joke’s on me. My blog is called “My Random Ramblings” after all. But that does not mean that random comments that are not related to my post in any way are welcome. But Akismet does a lovely job of catching many such comments. Here’s a sample comment that I had received for my post – tiny tale #74: A Sight to Behold.

“Next time I read a blog, I hope that it does not disappoint me as much as this particular one. After all, I know it was my choice to read through, nonetheless I genuinely thought you would have something helpful to talk about. All I hear is a bunch of moaning about something that you could possibly fix if you weren’t too busy seeking attention.”

I don’t think that tiny tale deserved such a comment. It was well received by everyone other than this particular person. And no, it was not a proxy or a bot that goes on publishing spam comments. This was written by an actual blogger! Feel free to read the story and correct me if I am wrong when I say that this comment was totally random.

But that being said, constructive criticism is always welcome. And many bloggers have been kind enough to offer that and I have always welcomed it. But the above comment does not fall under that category.

  • If you don’t want to read, say that. Don’t come up with lame excuses:

Feedback has a lot of effect on my ability to write. There was a phase when I had all but given up on blogging. There was a time when I used to bug my friends till they read my posts. That stopped when I had a few bad experiences. Some people, who were close to me and knew me really well led me to believe that my tiny tales were worthless. They didn’t believe that a story could be compressed and told in so few words. Some didn’t understand the concept of my six word stories. Some thought that the stories ended by the time they got interesting. Further more, one person even told me that the beautiful comments left by my fellow bloggers was only meant for formality as “those bloggers” didn’t feel like breaking the truth to me. What truth? You may ask. This person told me that my tiny tales were not really up to the mark. Was this person a writer? No, no. Definitely not. But I chose to believe their hurtful words and I stopped writing tiny tales for a long while. The fact that such a comment came from some of my friends made it even more hurtful. I should have heeded the words of my fellow bloggers but the hurtful comments had all my attention. They eclipsed everything else. I simply lacked the confidence to write flash fiction. The ones who love my blog will keep reading. The ones who have other priorities never will. It took me a long while to get over those hurtful comments. And I don’t want to go through it ever again. So I took the decision to not send out personal links to anyone anymore.

Sidenote: I would like to give a shout-out to a favourite blogger of mine to help me see the fact that my tiny tales aren’t that bad after all. Thank you, Pranitha Menon chechi for your love and support when I needed it the most. I will never forget all that you have done for me. Also, a huge thank you to all my readers and fellow bloggers for always encouraging me, for lifting up my spirits when I am feeling low. You guys are the best

Okay, the next one isn’t as huge as the others, but still that can’t be totally ignored either.

  • Getting my name wrong 😦

If I had a dollar (or even a penny!) for every time someone had got my name wrong, I would be a very rich girl. As someone who has faced a lot of bullying/teasing/annoying comments over the spelling of my name, it’s difficult when all those feelings surface again after so many years. Yes, my name is spelled S-H-W-E-T-A. It’s not Swetha, Sweta, Swatha, Sweda, Swathi, Shreya, Shruti, Shewta or Shaeta. I am someone who strongly believes that a name is a critical part of someone’s identity. Forget about spelling, I have no words for people who change my name altogether! Just because someone thinks my name should be spelled in some way doesn’t mean that should be the case. Yes, I know it happens by accident at times but every time this happens a tiny sword permanently lodged in my heart takes a slow painful turn. But then again, they haven’t gone through all the experiences that I have had. So I guess they will never understand where I am coming from. So these days, I smile on the outside and let it go with a fake laugh. Any attempt to correct them would only end in a lecture with why they think my spelling is “wrong”. And I am sick and tired of hearing the same dialogue. And I am eternally grateful to anyone and everyone who puts in an effort to spell my name correctly.

I guess I have bored you enough for the day. If you are still with me, thank you for putting up with me. 🙂

Image courtesy: Giphy

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116 thoughts on “Spam, insensitive comments and other annoying stuff

  1. I believe a nice comment goes a long way. It’s even ok to show one’s disagreement in a descent and polite way. What is not acceptable is belittling someone with dismissive comments. If one doesn’t have anything nice to say, better not say anything at all.

    Oh I hate the ones who like a bunch of posts and leave their site link in comments. And about the name, you know my story already 😅

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a great advice. I don’t know why many have never heard of it or keep breaking it for some reason. Such comments are my pet peeves too. I just delete them straightaway these days. And oh yes, I know you can understand my predicament with the whole name debacle 😃

      Like

  2. Dear Shweta, I agree with you on all points! I’ve said many times, on my many blogs, that “stats don’t thrill me”–I only want people to follow if they actually like my writing and plan to visit regularly (not daily necessarily, but more than once). And I’ve had to tell several people repeatedly that if their comment includes a link, it’s going into Spam and staying there. I’m amazed at some of the blogs that follow me–they have nothing in common with me, my beliefs or my writing whatsoever. And when I go over to see their blog–I’m astounded that they use ugly curse words or write about things that should be rated R or X; this tells me they didn’t bother to read anything on my blog–they just randomly picked it to follow.

    Haha, now you’ve got me ranting along with you!! So sorry! I hope I’ve never spelled your name wrong–or offended you in any way ❤ Blessings to you ALWAYS ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’ve always been nothing but a great supporter. Sadly we can’t control other people or their actions. So we just have to cut our losses and move on. It’s better to go on a rant and get it out of our systems than bottle it up inside us. Thank you for your support, Rhen. And I’m really sorry for my late response.

      Like

  3. Shweta, firstly, you’ve got a lovely name. Secondly you have an amazing blog, frankly speaking, I love your way of writing, I love your work. Thirdly, I couldn’t stop nodding while reading this post, every single point makes sense! Lastly, keep writing and inspiring us!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. People who give such kinds of feedback on your post are faceless cowards…. But if you start listening to them and stop doing what you really love….. You are more worse…. I am glad that you didn’t pay attention to that rubbish! Just shows how strong minded you are! All the best for future…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Faceless cowards! That’s the best word for them. It’s just that, it hurts. Even though I know that they are being petty and mean, the sheer amount of thought and effort that goes into a post is not so small. And such comments tend to hurt. But we should keep on writing and let the haters hate. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and making me feel better. Sorry about my late response 😬

      Liked by 1 person

      1. And don’t know what’s there in your posts that people hate!
        Anyways, don’t pay attention to them. You will face many more haters in your life. Just ignore!

        You’re welcome 💗💟

        Like

  5. With the follow for follow culture, people are making WordPress a new social media.
    About the friends situation, I too learned it the hard way.

    These things aside, I really love your blog and you inspire me so much. Hope you continue writing and inspiring. I always look forward to read your works.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I don’t know whether it’s just me or if WP has a lot more spam than it used to. I get multiple comments every day with people trying to advertise their blog on my posts. It’s just so hurtful because like you said we put so much work into creating every post and it’s so disrespectful for people to take advantage of our hard work like that. I even had a blogger whose first comment on my blog was telling me- not asking- to go on their blog and let them know what mistakes they are making and how to improve their blog…

    As for the hate- I know as people on the internet we should be more thick skinned and expect such stuff but to be honest we’re still human and it still really hurts when someone writes a negative comment like that. There’s a difference between feedback and being an asshole and that person was clearly being an asshole. Just know that there are over two thousand subscribers of yours that appreciate your work and this person was either jealous of your success or bitter about their own life.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh I know many like that! They often say that they have put a lot of effort into their posts and that we should check them out. Previously, I used to call them out. But now, I just delete those comments. Our blogs shouldn’t be seen merely as an advertisement platform!
      I know, right? It hurts. There are a lot of assholes out there, ones who are jobless enough to leave completely unrelated scathing feedback. Oh yes, I’ll keep that in mind. Thanks a lot, Pooja. You’re the best 💞

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Dear Shweta,

    Let me start with a big albeit virtual hug.

    I hear you loud and clear.

    Will say only this: the world is big enough to celebrate each and every one of us and our creativity–(creativity, not sale-ability–that’s a discussion for another day). So create what brings you joy and your audience will find you.

    Read this line today about Picasso: “…. for he believed that artists should never do what people expect of them.”

    I rest my case:)

    Stay safe and keep writing.

    Arti xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, dear. You hug is well received and has made me feel warm on the inside. And I’m following your advice. I won’t let the snarky ones get under my skin. I will keep creating because that’s what I love to do. Picasso is spot on! Thank you for sharing that. I’ll keep writing. Thanks a lot for dropping by. I’ve missed you ❤️🤗

      Like

  8. I can relate with all of them, except the feedback part. You’ve given life to many bloggers’ unsaid words.

    I hate it when someone continuously spells my name incorrectly, and at times, when I mistype, I feel really bad. Most often, I edit the spelling if possible.

    I’ve heard about the ‘bookmark’ technique too. I usually bookmark if I choose to read a post later, or the blogs of my new followers. I read few posts and follow them back only if it matches my taste.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad and sad that you can relate to this.. if that makes sense. I hate it when someone misspells my name. So I take extra care while spelling other blogger’s names, especially if they are a bit complicated. And that’s what I do too. I read a few posts and I’ll follow them if I like what I see. Otherwise, I just move on. Sorry about my late response 😬

      Liked by 1 person

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