Friday, March 11, 2005

The Joys of Email

All right, I don't bitch about my day job much. This isn't really bitching about it either, actually. It's more... bitching about people's ability to bitch other people out over the Internet.

Basically, two months ago I wrote an article that really seemed to resonate with people. I got about 100 reader emails about the article, and of those, about 98% were positive. Of the other 2%, this one guy just really railed me -- I did answer his email (I answer most of my email, even negative/argumentative ones) and then we kept going back and forth, obvious that neither of us was going to agree on this topic. (I guess I should also share that my writing for my day job is of such a nature that people WILL occasionally just flame you -- opinion stuff, you know, you can step on some toes that way.)

Anyhoo, this week, I wrote another piece on the same topic and the dude goes at it again. He wrote once and very angrily and this time I was like, no way, I'm not answering it, I already know where this is going. If somebody's belligerent enough I'll usually give myself a pass, though it's usually not until somebody drops the F-bomb in an email, or says something ignorant like "your article is a good example of why women are bad journalists" -- yes, that's a real quote and I should add, my writing I do for my day job isn't actually journalism. Anyway, I didn't answer and today he proceeded to email me another three times. Like every couple hours. Blam, blam, blam!

I did finally answer him; I guess my reason for writing about this here is I just wanted to vent seeing how that sort of made it a particularly annoying day while I was trying to get other stuff done. And I guess the real theme here is that people feel damn comfortable bitching somebody out in the comfort of email. It's weird. I have had people write me hateful mail, and when I respond, they respond, "Oh. I didn't think anybody really read the mail. I was in a bad mood."

So if anyone out there thinks they can spew hate and that nobody's reading their mail, just know that there probably is somebody reading your mail. And promptly deleting it if you're hateful enough. Ha. (And I know that none of my regulars here are the types to just spew hate in an email! You all are good peeps!)

Anyway, I know I'm supposed to have a tough skin and all that jazz... but at times, it just gets OLD. Sigh... I'll be over it in a few days. ;) Unless this dude sends me a letter bomb... sheesh.

Thanks for reading,



Blogger Maktaaq said...

What an annoying jerk!

As I have no idea what this guy was going on about, I can just surmise that he is generally nasty and unpleasant in all his dealings. Some people are just like that.

That "your article is a good example of why women are bad journalists" really ires me - it would be racist if phrased differently yet the guy gets off scott free for being merely sexist! Grrr!

On the other hand, I am trying to be more respectful of my favourite literary celebrities and I have accumulated lots of drafts of letters I must one day send to my heroes, to let them know how great I think they are, before - I hate to say it - they die. Edward Gorey, Carl Barks and Tove Jansson, your letters were ready to go when you departed!

2:57 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

Man, that guy sounded like a peckerhead. However, I'd be lying if I said I've never fired off a nasty e-mail to a columnist about something (usually poltically related). I think I did get into a flame war a few times, but it just left me with a lower opinion of the columist, like he had no confidence in what he wrote and felt like he had to argue with me, a lowly reader. So I guess my advice is to ignore them and take the high road. I'm sorry it happened, though. It's not like you're trying to rip people off or harm them by your writing, so I don't understand what the guy's beef was.

6:57 PM  
Blogger LadyLitBlitzin said...

Thanks guys. Yeah, Maktaaq, that one remark was just so insane... I couldn't even believe someone would say something like that. It does make you wonder what the hell century this is!

I love the idea of all the letters you have. Send them, send them! :)

Well political emails, those are different. Hee hee. That's interesting, that you had a lower opinion of the guy... I think only once have I stooped to someone's level in a flame war... not a pretty scene. ;) I usually think it's important to write everybody back just because I don't want it to seem like I have too high of an opinion of myself.. but maybe they have all lost any respect for me, ha. ;)

I have a few penpals that way though, which is also a little weird, perhaps. I have always found it so much easier to communicate via email, though, that it's often hard for me NOT to write people back and be myself... odd, I know.

11:41 PM  
Blogger Maktaaq said...

I've always wanted to write rude letters to answer annoying jerks (like some sexist jerk who insisted in Wednesday's local paper that more little boys are raped by women than little girls by pervy men!) but now that I am a semi-public figure in my city, I'd rather not draw this sort of attention to myself.

I have a number of penpals that I have been neglectful of writing to...

1:32 AM  
Blogger LadyLitBlitzin said...

Yeah, the guy wrote me twice more over the weekend and then apparently enlisted a minion, who wrote me like seven new emails. The first guy's last email was more conciliatory... I think. Ugh...


You can write hate letters, just anonymously! ;)

8:24 PM  
Blogger Maktaaq said...

Oh poo! The local papers insist on real names and they confirm before they rpint stuff. I think I'll just forget this moron and not marry his son.

1:23 AM  

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