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Sunday, April 21, 2024
HomeAboutProfessorCare to Comment? A Blogger's Guide to Etiquette

Care to Comment? A Blogger’s Guide to Etiquette

Stop the presses! TPOL is merely a blog providing my insight, comedy, and experiences learned from travel using points to get me there while hopefully inspiring others to do the same. It is not a journalism.

So why do people leave angry, cheeky comments passively criticizing me of distorting the truth or being critical of nonsensical issues. Case in point, Scott wrote, “If you don’t even bother rotating your images, why bother writing?” Such pettiness should be ignored but I can’t help but get annoyed at someone implying that I’m lazy.

Are people so rude that they can’t put phrase their feelings in a polite way? For example, “I saw your pictures and wondered why don’t you rotate them to account if they are meant to be vertical?” That’s a valid question and I would answer with a well-reasoned response e.g., “I learned today that rotating them on WordPress doesn’t fix the problem.”

Greg wrote regarding my post on Travel Blogging vs. Travel Writing, “If you’re already talking about how many ‘hours’ a post took to create you’re not in it for the love.” Nowhere in my post did I say I was doing it for love so what’s with the brassy comment?

The last example from my Hotel Review, Park Hyatt: Too High in the Sky is my favorite.  TJ’s snarky remark was “There is a difference between fog and clouds. FYI.” I’m still trying to figure out his motivation for saying this though I Googled fog and found the definition to be: a thick cloud of tiny water droplets suspended in the atmosphere at or near the earth’s surface that obscures or restricts visibility (to a greater extent than mist; strictly, reducing visibility to below 1 km).

I understand that I shouldn’t shine the spotlight on silly behavior and that I shouldn’t acknowledge such negativity but the problem is much larger than a few bad-mannered comments. The problem is that social media provides a bully pulpit for anyone to say whatever he wants with no repercussions. These remarks relate to issues of far greater importance than if the lounge I was in at JFK was the Admirals or Flagship.(see Charles’s sensitivity to my mistake). All it takes now is a screenshot of a Tweet and the bloodhounds move in for the kill. From there, the pack waits for someone else to do something ill-advised and it’s game over for him too.

Individuals who use social media to assassinate the character of others defend their actions with the misapplication of the 1st Amendment. The targeted person has no way to defend himself once the virality of what he said gets into the hands of the social media jury. Unlike in criminal cases, where the 6th Amendment provides that the accused shall enjoy the right to confront witnesses against him, social media trials are conducted by anonymous avatars who hide behind their Twitter handles or fake emails while relishing in the contrived uproar they have inspired.

To that end I propose a code of conduct for bloggers and commentators alike. This etiquette guide should have simple rules such as the following as a starting point:

For commentators: Actually read the post before responding.

For bloggers: Tone it down with the click-bait (of which I’ve been, in my opinion, emphasis added, wrongly accused in the past.)

Alas, none of my rambling will matter since, as I wrote in the post To Reply or Not to Reply, few commentators follow-up and even fewer are genuinely looking to engage in a dialogue on the point of which they have taken issue.

Anyone care to comment? Inapplicable remarks will land you in TPOL’s Hall of Shame for life. That’s a joke. Sorry I refuse to follow the threat up with a smiley.

And now here comes the monkey!









  1. Almost all travel blogs share three characteristics: narcissism, disproportionality and self-promotion. If a blogger is bothered when glaring examples of these are responded to, it’s time to move to shallow end of the pool.

    • Before people leave comments criticizing a blog, they need to ask – what exactly does the blogger owe you? Have you paid for the service? Do you have the choice to ignore this blog and move on to someone else? If the useful information doesn’t outweigh the “narcissism, disproportionality and self-promotion” then you need to go and find another place to troll

  2. TPOL..I am on board with you about trial by social media jury, but you are taking extreme cases and applying to it mundane comments on your blog, which might annoy you but aren’t putting you on trial. You mentioned in regards to a comment, “Nowhere in my post did I say I was doing it for love”, which means that you are trying to do this to make some money, which is evident by wanting to be on boarding area. That’s okay and I see nothing wrong with bloggers making some money from it, but if that is your purposed and you can’t be arsed enough to figure out how to put your vertical images in WordPress properly, then you’ll just have to keep taking the comments about it because it does look really bad. If you are interested in making money from this blog, which you allude to above, then people are you going to hold you to some professional standards. Then again, it’s your blog to do with as you please, but it’s kind of ironic that you are complaining about viewers comments, yet make an entire post, basically one long comment to those readers, dedicated throwing your toys out of your pram.

    • I didn’t say I was on trial. I said, “The problem is that social media provides a bully pulpit for anyone to say whatever he wants with no repercussions.” And that is evidenced by nonsense comments I receive for something as trivial as my blog. If I’m going to get slammed for confusing airport lounges and types of clouds, imagine what would happen if I made a ‘real
      mistake, e.g., confused the vertical pitch of an airplane seat!

      “It does look really bad,” you say. I wasn’t disagreeing but there are ways to say it politely. Again, I’m open to criticism but professionalism is a two-way street. That was the point I made above.

      I was being facetious about wanting to make money. Everyone wants to make money but the chances of doing so by writing about points is very slim. But hell I’d take it if it came my way.

      Levity, entertainment while showing the opportunity for travel arbitrage is what TPOL is all about. I was hoping to connect with readers who share this viewpoint in order to create a forum for exchanging ideas on the subject. I was not complaining. Points isn’t real life. It’s a fun hobby that could evaporate tomorrow (see Redbird) leaving us all to question, why were people so angry!

      Ah and there I go on another rant that will be misconstrued.

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