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Internet Etiquette Rules: How to React to Criticism

Internet Etiquette Rules: How to React to Criticism

When someone picks at your work on the Internet, it hurts. And this is true for most of us ordinary people, with the exception of those enlightened who do not take mean words to heart. Occasionally, it is hard to feel OK about intelligent, kind and rational criticism, not to mention the typical comments that people leave to your posts on the Internet. So, here are the most widespread types of online criticism and some tips on how to react according to the internet etiquette rules.

“tl;dr” or “too long, did not read.” When you encounter this type of comment under your brainchild, try not to get furious or sad. This saying rather describes the person who left it than you and your work (personally, I do not understand why you would leave a comment if you even did not read the text). But the useful lesson to take from this comment is not that the story is too long, but that it just feels too long. Read it twice or three times, add more emotional life-based situations and try to hook your audience from the first lines.

“Meh” means indifference. If you get a “meh” comment, it means that the person at least read to the end, but somehow was not satisfied with the content. In the modern Internet world, overloaded with information, we prefer feeling more than thinking. Add some plot twists and turns, tell the story more personally, fill it with strong emotions and you will definitely get less “meh” comments.

“Tried too hard!” This one is probably the most infuriating kind of a comment (at least, for me it is so). To cut a long story short, it means something like you made a sad story too sentimental or put too many jokes in a comedy. Reminding yourself that everything has to be balanced might help in such situation. Read your text again to check if it is overly emotional or overloaded with jokes. Also, remember that what you consider funny may seem stupid or weird to some other people, and there is no sense in trying to convince that person, especially via the Internet. In general, try not to take online criticism too personally, and remember that internet etiquette rules have been around for a long time.

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