Friday, March 24, 2017

Book Blogger Hop No. 89: Handling Negative Blog Comments

Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop,
hosted by Billy @

For more information, and 
to find out the topic of next week's question, click HERE.

This Week's Question

How do you handle negative
comments left on your blog?

(Submitted  by Maria @ 

My Answer

This is something that never even entered my mind when I first started blogging. And for a long time afterward, I didn't consider the possibility, either. 

Thankfully, I haven't had that many negative comments on my posts, in six (going on seven now) years of blogging. To be quite honest, I think I've only had two or three in all this time.

My way of handling negative comments depends on how offensive and/or insulting they are. If they are mild criticisms, then I will leave them up, and even reply to them, as calmly and politely as I possibly can.

Not that long ago, I received a comment that was not terribly offensive, but the person did criticize one of my posts because of alleged spelling errors. Just for the heck of it, though, I carefully checked over the post in question, proofreading in detail as I went. Well, I didn't find any errors. Not a single one.

I have occasionally come across spelling and grammatical errors on other blogs. I would NEVER dream of pointing out such errors in a blog comment. I would send an email, and thus avoid embarrassing a blogger on their own blog.  I recall sending one such email once. Usually, I just ignore any errors I might come across. Nobody's perfect, after all.

This person happened to mention that they had noticed my "errors" because they were an editor. I then politely informed them that I'm an English teacher, so I'm very much aware of such things, which is why I proofread and tweak my posts endlessly, even after I publish them. Lol.

The situation is totally different if a negative blog comment contains profanity and/or insults. I will simply delete such comments, without any explanation to the person who left them. I definitely do NOT want my readers and visitors to see that type of thing on my blog. Absolutely not! It not only creates a very bad impression of the blog, but also makes readers and visitors feel uncomfortable.

For instance, someone once called me "a grammar Nazi" in a comment, simply because I stated in one of my posts that Indie books frequently have editing issues. I think this term is VERY offensive, so I deleted that particular comment.

Both of my blogs -- A Night's Dream of Books, and MindSpirit Book Journeys -- are free from profanity or anything having to do with pornography. I want them kept that way. Therefore, I will not tolerate any comments that contain any vulgar or lewd language. Nor will I tolerate any comments that are nothing more than personal attacks.

My intolerance for horribly negative comments extends to my readers and visitors. If one commenter criticizes another commenter in a very insulting manner -- which, of course, constitutes a personal attack --  I will not only delete the offensive comment, but also send an email to the offender explaining why I've deleted their comment, and asking them to refrain from such personal attacks in the future, or I will continue to delete their comments.

I do welcome opposing viewpoints, whether related to my or others' opinions, but only if such opposing viewpoints remain civil and cordial. One can certainly disagree with a comment, but it's not necessary to be vulgar, insensitive, or rude while doing so. 

In short, all readers and visitors are more than welcome to leave their honest opinions on my posts, as long as they do so politely and not in an aggressive, insulting manner.

Be warned! Trolls will swiftly be dealt with here! All other honest, kind, friendly commenters, WELCOME!!

What are your thoughts on
this topic?
Please leave a comment!
If you're participating in this meme,
I'll go comment on your 
own BBH post.
If not, I will then comment on one 
of your blog posts!
Thanks for visiting!!! 


  1. Hey Maria.

    Great post on a topic that we have both had experience with :)

    As I tend to delve into controversial issues the issue is especially important to me.

    I think that part of the problem is that people write things online that they would never say face to face. I actually am noticing things on my Facebook feed, particularly from family members that I cannot believe. If people would just act the same way in person that they do online it would alleviate many issues.

    Speaking of typos and errors; I just noticed that a blog that I had up for a long time had a huge typo that I never noticed. I am OK with people pointing them out to me as I want to get them fixed ASAP.

    Have a great weekend!

    1. Hey, Brian!

      Thanks for the good word!! :)

      This is an issue that many bloggers don't have to worry about, but, as you're pointing out, it all depends on the nature of the posts bloggers publish. In my case, I hardly ever, if at all, deal with controversial issues on A NIGHT'S DREAM OF BOOKS. On my other blog I have and will deal with them from time to time. However, I don't get many comments on that blog, since I don't post to it as often as I do on this one.

      You are SO right when you state that "people write things online that they would never say face to face"! Very well put!! That is SO true! We've both seen this on Twitter, for example. Of course, behaving politely on a blog or social media would indeed make life easier for everyone. But there are people online who just LOVE drama. Thankfully, I haven't experienced much of that here!

      BTW, I've noticed that Twitter seems to have been cracking down on offensive attacks on certain accounts. Let me know if this is indeed the case. From what I've seen on that site, there don't seem to be that many attacks by MRAs or Alt-Right people lately.

      I'm glad you wouldn't feel offended by someone pointing out typos in your posts. You're a very easygoing guy, and that's what I like about you! However, if I ever did notice any errors in one of your posts, I would just send you an email about them. Personally, I don't think commenting about such a thing directly on a blog post is the appropriate thing to do.

      Hope you have a great weekend, too!! Thanks for the WONDERFUL comment!! :) :) :)

  2. I would NEVER point out a grammar error on someone's post either.

    You handle the situations very well.

    Thanks for sharing and for your wonderful, detailed answer.

    Happy Hopping!!

    Silver's Reviews
    My Blog Hop Answer

    1. Hi, Elizabeth!

      I'm so glad you agree! I think it would be an embarrassment to the blogger in question. Brian, the blogger who commented above, is a very nice, easygoing guy. He says he wouldn't mind someone pointing out an error in one of his posts within the context of a comment. I would never do that, though, whether on his blog or anyone else's. I just don't think it would be appropriate.

      Thanks for always commenting back, as well as for always saying such positive things about my BBH posts!! You are such a sweet person! It's been such a pleasure getting to know you, Elizabeth!!

      Happy Hopping to you, too!! Have an AWESOME weekend!! <3 :)

  3. Thankfully I've only had 2 that really felt negative and they were both just a difference of opinion but put in a more confrontational manner than I would like. I think for the most part book people are pretty respectful and I've never really noticed any kind of attacking comment on a book blog. One of the things I love about the community! I do feel like we have the right to delete comments that we feel are against the basic feel of the blog or we just don't like.

    1. Hi, Katherine!

      Yeah, same here. I've only had the two I mentioned in this post. Ironically, the first comment criticized my alleged "errors", while the second one criticized my "over-attention" to them! Lol. This just goes to prove that you can't possibly please all of the people all of the time, as the saying goes. Hahaha!!

      I do agree that, for the most part, book people are indeed respectful and non-confrontational. The blogosphere is not like Facebook or Twitter, where people can actually attack you with words! (Although it does seem that Twitter has been improving in this regard lately).

      Of course we bloggers have every right to delete objectionable comments! I gave examples in this post of the types of comments I will DEFINITELY delete. But again, thankfully, I've never seen the need to delete any comments, except for the one about the "grammar Nazi". That kind of stuff just crosses the line. I don't like being compared to a Nazi in any way, shape, or form!! And I certainly don't think anybody else should be compared to one of those monsters, either!

      I do get spam comments from time to time. But those are VERY easy to deal with. They require no thought at all; they are immediate deletions. Plus, I do report these people to Google, as most of them have Google accounts.

      Thanks for the nice comment!! Have a GREAT weekend!! <3 :)

  4. I completely agree with you on how to handle negative comments, most people I think just want to get a rise and bait you to do/write something you normally wouldn't. It seems like you handle it all with style though.

    1. Hi, Kimberly!

      I'm glad you agree with the way I handle negative comments!

      Yeah, there are people who actually ENJOY getting a rise out of other people online, provoking them to write stuff they normally wouldn't. Thankfully, though, I haven't seen any comments like those on this blog, or on my second blog, either.

      Thank you so much for the compliment!! I think that keeping one's cool, but being firm about one's "blogging boundaries" at the same time, is the way to go. Absolutely!

      Thanks for the nice comment!! Have a WONDERFUL weekend!! <3 :)

  5. I don't know how people can write insulting comments like that so easily. Although I have to admit that the book blog community, and booktuber community too, seem to be full of positive people. I think in this kind of posts/videos I rarely see insulting comments, as opposed to those of beauty gurus and stuff.

    Lipstick and Mocha

    1. Hi, Carla!

      Yaah, it's totally unacceptable for someone to do something like that. I've only had these two comments that weren't all that bad, really. But if I ever get any really BAD comments, I will definitely delete them!

      As you say, the book blogging community is full of very positive people. I'm not that familiar with the book tuber community, but it seems that, in general, bookish people are very nice and friendly -- like you, for example! :)

      I'm not surprised that on other kinds of blogs ans sites there are people who leave negative comments. I see those all the time, too -- on Facebook and Twitter. However, lately Twitter seems to be cleaning up its act.

      Thanks so much for the great comment!! Enjoy your day!! <3 :)

  6. Awesome post! I do the same thing also. I just delete the negative comment if it gets too offensive.

    Here’s my Book Blogger Hop!

    Ronyell @ Rabbit Ears Book Blog

    1. Hi, Ronyesll!

      Thank you for the compliment!!

      I think everyone would agree that the right thing to do is to delete comments that are just TOO offensive.

      Thanks for dropping by!! <3 :)

  7. What a great topic, Maria! Congratulations on your question being the subject of today's post! I am so sorry that ever happened to you. Of all my blogging buddies, you are the last I'd ever imagine someone trying to point out an error to! Your writing/spelling/grammar is impeccable! I've had a few run-ins myself, and that's why I began using comment moderation on my blog. It's a bit of a hassle at times, but then I'll receive a comment that is spam or someone being insulting and I can just delete it without ever letting it go public. It blows my mind that people can be so rude on another person's blog. I've had a mistake pointed out to me before concerning an incorrect publishing date. I appreciated it and fixed it right away, but I wished they had emailed me instead of putting it in a comment. I also got called out for mentioning grammatical errors and typos in a book -- it was by someone I considered a great blogging friend, but they wrote that it was a b***** (actually using the b word) thing to do; and I confess, it hurt my feelings. I shook it off and just deleted her comment. I think you handled your situations wonderfully and respectfully. One of the many reasons I adore you ;) Excellent post, my friend. *big hugs* <3 <3 <3

    1. Hi Michele!'re so sweet!! Yeah, I like coming up with questions for this hop from time to time. Glad you liked this one!! <3 :)

      Thank you SO much for complimenting my writing!! I LOVE to write, and, since I happen to be an English teacher, I pay a LOT of attention to the possibility of any errors of ANY type showing up in my posts. This person had SOME nerve, I think! Yes, this was a bit rude, especially when the person mentioned that they were an EDITOR. Well, excuse me, but I'm an ENGLISH TEACHER. Lol. Yeah, that got to me a little, but I was able to reply in a polite manner. I also told this person that, next time they find any "errors" in one of my posts, they can kindly send me an email. They haven't been back to comment since then. Lol.

      So you got a publishing date wrong. Big deal. Yes, they definitely should have emailed you on that one!

      I feel SO bad for you about that so-called "blogging friend".....And she even used "the B word"!!!! AWFUL. Honestly, how some people act.... I hope you no longer consider this woman your "friend". She's anything BUT. Of course it hurt your feelings!! I'd like to SMACK her for you!! But I'm glad you deleted her comment, and were able to shake it off. I am really shocked, though. You're absolutely one of THE SWEETEST book bloggers I've EVER met, so you certainly do NOT deserve such treatment!!

      Thank you for all these wonderful compliments!!!!

      I don't think I'll be getting any more negative comments here, but you never know..... I will continue to handle them the way I have thus far.

      And you know what? I adore you, too!!!!! I'm sending you THE BIGGGEST, SMOOOOOOOSHIEST, SUPER TACKLE HUGS!!!!!! And give some to Mckenzie, too!!!!!! MUAH!!!!!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :) :)

  8. Hi, Maria. Now that you mention it, I do remember one person commenting on my spelling of a particular word in a comment on my blog (and that was her entire comment. I wish she had emailed me privately instead. My grammar and spelling is far from perfect, even when I proofread a hundred times. There's always something wrong. I know because I find it years later when re-reading a post. LOL

    I can't think of any negative comments I have received on my blog. I imagine there must be some though in the 10 1/2 years I've been blogging. There have been a couple I remember that were borderline. Like you, I won't tolerate rudeness toward me or another commenter. I would delete the comment before I publish it.

    I hope you have a wonderful week, Maria! Did you enjoy your weekend? I think we are going to aim for a pajama day tomorrow (Sunday). Haha

    1. Hi, Wendy!

      You know, I'd just like to know where these people get off pointing out mistakes in blog posts, on OTHER PEOPLE'S blogs. I have from time to time seen errors on other blogs, but, as I stated in my post, I would NEVER EVER DREAM of actually leaving a comment to point this out! It can definitely embarrass the blogger! Some people are able to take this in stride, but, anyway you look at it, it's pretty RUDE. It sure looks like the people who do this just don't want to go to the trouble of emailing the blogger in question. But there's more to it than that -- they probably want to pull you down so as to make themselves feel better. Yup.

      So heck, even if a blogger DOES have errors in one of their posts, so what?! What about THE BIG PICTURE? What about the overall blog content? Do they write great posts? Do they engage readers? In your case, as well as in the case of many wonderful bloggers I know, the answer is a definite "Yes". So this thing about errors is really very petty!

      And you've been blogging 10 1/2 years?! WOW. WOW. WOW. You're a VETERAN, Wendy!! CONGRATS!!!!! Looking forward to 10+ more years!!!! WOOT, WOOT!!!! :) :) :) :)

      I'm glad you haven't gotten any negative comments! But then, why should you? It's great you have comment moderation. So you NEVER have to tolerate rudeness or trolling!

      Hope you have a wonderful week as well, Wendy!! Yes, we had a fantastic weekend!! Did you you guys have fun during your pajama day?

      Thanks for the AWESOME comment!! Hope you're having a SUPER DUPER week!!! HUGS for you & Mouse!!!!!! <3 >3 >3 :) :) :) :)

  9. It sounds like you handle negative comments really well - I would freak out I think if it was me and take it very personally. Luckily I've haven't received any and most people are really polite. I feel people who leave negative comments are just being insensitive - especially when they do so in an aggressive manner - and are in general, looking to pick a fight.

    Although I'm sure my own posts have had more than a few spelling errors lol - but typos slip through - even in professionally edited books - so I don't understand why anyone would expect a blog post to be perfect. Anyway really great post - thanks for sharing!

    1. Hi, there!

      Thanks for the compliment! I'm glad I give that impression, but actually, I was pretty ticked off by the editor's comment. Lol. Of course, I didn't want to go off on this person or anything. But I did let them know that, as an English teacher, I'm VERY aware of any errors in my blog posts, whether they're typos, grammatical errors, or whatever. Since this person had mentioned they were an editor, I then mentioned that I'm an English teacher. They have not been back to my blog, BTW. Lol.

      You are SO right -- people who leave negative comments are indeed insensitive. If these comments are aggressive, of course the intent is to pick a fight. These are actually trolls. Thankfully, I haven't had any comments of this type.

      I agree -- typos can and do slip through, even in professionally edited books. I have certainly come across them. Books released by major publishers like HarperCollins don't usually have that many, but Indie books are notorious for having editing issues. So I find it VERY ironic that the second commenter called me "a grammar Nazi" for pointing this out, whereas the first commenter told me I had typos! Lol.

      I DO try to make my blog posts as perfect as I possibly can. I revise them several times before publishing them, and even after they go live, I will often go back and tweak them some more! I'm just a perfectionist when it comes to my blog. Lol.

      Thanks for the compliment on the post!! You're very welcome for the share, and thanks for the very supportive comment!! <3 <3 :) :)

  10. Honestly, unless the person is cursing and being outright rude, I'd probably handle the situation as passive-aggressively as possible XD haha. Thankfully though, I can't really think of any negative or even critical comments that I've gotten. Then again, I've yet to post a discussion post, and those are often the ones that get 'those' comments. Lovely post! :)

    Brittany @ Brittany's Book Rambles

    1. Hi, Brittany!

      Oh, thank God, I haven't gotten any comments of that type! If I ever did, I would IMMEDIATELY delete them! I don't think book bloggers get many such comments. I'm sure other kinds of bloggers do, though, especially those that blog about politics.

      The funny thing is that the first critical comment I referred to in this post had nothing to do with any type of discussion. The person left it on a blog tour post, would you believe! They did say I had a great blog in this comment, but that was just a way of "softening the blow". I hate it when people give you a compliment for the sole purpose of then criticizing you. Like, "Oh, this is great, BUT....". This is a rather sneaky way of throwing a zinger at you!

      With that first commenter, I felt that, since they had mentioned they were an editor, I should let them know that I'm an English teacher. I also let them know that, in future, I would appreciate an email if they saw any errors in one of my blog posts, instead of a blog comment. Thankfully, this person has not commented on my blog again. Lol.

      The best thing to do, in the case of a very rude, belligerent comment, is to delete it. Those bloggers who use comment moderation have an advantage. However, I don't want to get bogged down with having a lot of comments to moderate, since I'm sometimes unable to check them right away. But I do my best to catch any really objectionable comments, and then get them off the blog as quickly as possible!

      Thanks so much for the wonderful comment!! <3 :)

  11. After reading your post, and thinking about the expectations I have for commenters, I think my expectations of interaction in the comments of my blog are the same as the expectations of students' interpersonal interactions in my classroom. Thanks for your thoughtful post.

    eli @ the (book) supplier
    My Blog Hop Answer

    1. Hi, Eli!

      That's a really interesting observation! Yeah, I think it's reasonable to expect that commenters be as courteous and non-confrontational as students in a classroom would be expected to be. Unfortunately, as Brian pointed out above, people seem to feel that they can write things online they would never say in person. And, the very same people who do this kind of thing would not want others to do it to THEM. Typical of human nature, I

      The ironic thing is that the first commenter criticized me for alleged errors in a post, while the second one said I was too much of a perfectionist in judging Indie books! But what REALLY got to me was this commenter's use of the phrase "a grammar Nazi". I found this VERY offensive. NO ONE should be compared to the Nazis in any way, shape, or form. So I deleted this comment. Besides, I have every right to state my honest opinion of any books I read. It's a well-known fact that Indie books DO have editing issues. Many other people have stated this, so my observation was hardly a new one.

      I am a perfectionist when it comes to my blog posts, and I won't apologize for that. Heck, I revise them several times before they go live, and even then, I will frequently tweak them! Lol.

      Thanks for the compliment, and for the nice comment!! <3 :)

  12. I love your answer to this. My editor calls herself a Grammar Nazi, so I don't see it as offensive - but I can perfectly see your point.
    Frankly I see more editing issues in trad published than indie books, especially ebooks, these days, partly because the publishers don't seem to take notice of the formatting requirements for online retailers.
    The other thing that sometimes happens is people being picky about something when they haven't realised it's written in e.g. UK English, not US.
    Great answer.

    1. Hi, Jemima!

      Oh, thank you so much for the compliment!! <3 :)

      Your editor actually calls herself a Grammar Nazi? Interesting. Yes, I definitely consider this term offensive. I just don't like being compared to a Nazi in any way, shape, or form. I realize this expression is metaphorical, but I still don't care for it at all.

      Now that you've mentioned it, I have indeed run into errors in traditionally published books. I don't know if I would say that these books have more editing issues than Indie books, though.

      Your point about people being picky when something is written in UK English is well taken. I sometimes read books published in the UK, and yes, I do have to look up certain words and expressions on Google. This doesn't bother me, though, and I don't see why people complain about this. The fact of the matter is that there are indeed differences between British and American English. It's like the differences between Spanish as spoken in Spain, and Spanish spoken in other countries that were originally colonized by Spain. The same thing happens with French as spoken in France, and French as spoken in other countries that use the language. The same thing also happens with Portuguese as spoken in Portugal vs. Portuguese as spoken in Brazil. When any given language moves from the country it originated in, to countries that were first colonized by that country, the language will inevitably change in some ways. People should really understand this. Both versions -- the original and the new -- are valid.

      Thanks for the wonderful, thought-provoking comment!! <3 :)

  13. This was a great question! The only two seriously negative comments I have gotten in three years of blogging have been about my blog design and I deleted them both. I get some passive aggressive comments on the blog now and then and I reply with a simple, "Really?" XD

    1. Hi, there!

      Thank you so much!! I've had this question in the back of my mind for some time now, and finally decided to submit it to the Book Blogger Hop.

      You got negative comments about your blog design?! OMG, what a totally SILLY thing for someone to criticize! Everybody's tastes in blog design are different. NO blogger should be criticized for something like this! Heck, I don't love the blog design of all the blogs I interact with, but that doesn't keep me from reading and commenting on their posts. It's the content that really matters. So you did the right thing in deleting those comments.

      As for passive-aggressive comments, I wouldn't tolerate those, either. I would definitely delete them. I like your attitude toward them, though. I wish I could be as nonchalant about these comments as you are, but that's just not me. Lol.

      Thanks for your interesting thoughts!! <3 :)


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