should we comment on controversial topics?

staying quiet vs speaking up (1)

So last week, there was a a bit of drama in the blogosphere. I was only a witness (but I did comment on the post that started it all and agreed with a lot of the points that it made). However, I later read a couple of other posts pointing out the problematic aspects of that original post and I realized that while that post made some good points, it was also a bit negative and seemed to judge other bloggers.

While this community is, as I like to put it, fucking awesome, that post and the drama that happened inspired me to brainstorm some pros and cons to commenting on controversial topics. 

Pros of Speaking Up

  • A lot of people might actually agree with you! Sometimes it just takes that one blog post or tweet to stimulate discussion. There are so many times I’ve decided to stay quiet about my thoughts on something, only to discover that quite a few other bloggers have similar opinions. 
  • Some things need to be said and, especially for those with large followings, your words can make a difference. 

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Cons of Speaking up!

  • You might end up sparking an disagreement that grows out of hand…Sometimes it can be difficult to express your opinions politely (and there might still be backlash even if you weren’t being rude).

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  • It’s possible to become the target of a whole lot of hate.
  • You might spend an hour staring at your computer screen wondering how to respond….

To me, the number of pros and cons is more or less the same. However, I think it’s also important to keep in mind that intent can also determine the reaction. If someone is just trying to start a conversation or remind people to be more open-minded, their words are less likely to be received negatively. 

So what are your thoughts? Are there any pros or cons I missed? Do you agree with me? Disagree? And are you the kind of person who likes to get involved or watch from the sidelines? 😉 

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19 thoughts on “should we comment on controversial topics?

  1. Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction says:

    I commented on those posts you’re talking about – on both sides of the issue. I think it’s good to get your thoughts out there as long as you’re respectful and polite when you do it. There’s always a chance for backlash, unfortunately, so you do still have to be prepared for that. You make great points here about the pros and the cons. I guess you just have to decide for yourself if it’s worth it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rachana says:

      I was worried I may have missed a pro or con but it seems like I covered most of the relevant ones. I guess we can only control how we react and not how others do so. Thanks for stopping by my blog!

      Like

  2. shannonmiz says:

    I think if you are respectful and open minded, then YES absolutely we should comment on controversial stuff. I don’t know if you read the follow up to that post, but in the first comment I left a novella basically about being anonymous and how I was SICK of being anonymous. Why shouldn’t I speak my mind, as long as I am not being rude or hateful? I feel like lately, any little comment can be taken out of context and spun into something else, and then everyone and their brother jumps on the bandwagon. I think we need to calmly discuss feelings- just like you did when you commented on that post, and again, writing this one. It CAN be done, we just have to make it our business to respect each other 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rachana says:

      I think a lot of people would agree with you in that it’s alright to comment on something as long as you don’t be offensive/rude/mean. Yes, that whole ‘out-of-context’ thing is definitely an issue with quoting someone. :/ It’s too bad there was confusion and misinterpretation.

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    • Rachana says:

      Yes I wasn’t aware of the ‘drama’ until I came across some bloggers discussing it on Twitter. There’s always the possibility of someone getting offended in situations like these but like you said, it’s better to try not to hurt others while expressing said opinion.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Nirvana says:

    The book community is a fabulous place – we spread so much love, and I wouldn’t choose anywhere else ❤ As for commenting on controversial topics? I'd usually leave a small explanation for why I think so and so is this way, and try not to offend the author of the post – even if they may be wrong. Internet drama is horrible. This was a really interesting discussion, good on you for posting this!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rachana says:

      That’s a smart plan – it’s always good not to waste your time on something that doesn’t actually matter. I haven’t commented too much either but I thought it might be interesting to explore the pros and cons 🙂

      Like

  4. Bec (@bectineus) says:

    It is really hard to say whether or not commenting on drama is okay or not. Sometimes people do need to be called out on their actions, yes, but it’s also really easy to be misunderstood or for people not to fully listen to your explanation of things because they let their own feelings cloud their judgement. These are things I have learnt from past experience and hope to never ever go through again (I almost quite blogging because of it)

    Because of said past experience, I don’t want to get involved in drama anymore. At all. It sucks the joy out of everything. But sometimes speaking up is necessary, and those that are brave enough to do it need to be calm and honest and educate the community about the problematic aspects of whatever caused the drama in the first place, not seek to blow it further out of proportion. They shouldn’t go ridiculing the person online, bullying, targeting them in an almost witch hunt situation because that’s not fair and can be really detrimental to the original poster no matter how bad/horrible their original post is. Plus sometimes out of control drama is what the original controversial poster was after and that’s not cool.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rachana says:

      Well I mean, in the end, everyone has to decide whether they want to risk getting involved in drama or just keep quiet and stay out of it. And I think most of the time it just depends on the situation. I’m really sad to hear you almost quit blogging because you experienced something like that. I think there’s a fine line between making more drama and just speaking up – and you’re definitely right that sometimes people are just interested in ‘making drama’ when they say controversial things but at the same time, calling them out on it will sort of prevent it from happening again (and will remind others that they can’t get away with things like that).
      Thank you for stopping by my blog! 🙂

      Like

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