From time to time in blogging you come across someone who is writing things about you that you don’t particularly agree with. Sometimes they write about you in a constructively critical way and on other occasions they do so in a fairly destructive manner.
If this hasn’t happened to you yet – it will if you blog long enough.
The question is, ‘what should you do about it?’
I’ve written previously on this topic and written a list of 15 things to do when you’re attacked – but over the last few months I’ve found that one method seems to work more than anything else.
All it really involves is joining the conversation in the place where you’re being critiqued.
Even in the last few days I’ve found a few spots where I’d been written about in less than glowing terms and on each occasion I simply joined the comment thread and attempted to state my point of view in as reasonable and level headed case as I could.
I’m not saying that this works in every case (and it’s not always easy to do in each instance) – but I find that people respond pretty well in most instances if you are willing to hear what they have to say and then respond in a reasonable way yourself. There’s something about a calm response to attack that takes the sting out of things.
In each case where I’ve done this recently I’ve either had apologies or a constructive conversation with those who were critiquing me where I felt we both learnt something and came out of it with a stronger relationship as a result.
update: I’ve added to this post and comments below in a a new post on ignoring criticism as a strategy.