This week, my assistant posted a “good news” post on the Facebook page for the nonprofit animal rescue I started in 2017, Starlight Outreach and Rescue.
The purpose of her post was to share the progress of an injured animal we were working to help. Someone commented on the post asking what animal hospital we’d taken the pet to. When she named the clinic, the commenter made a point of talking about a bad experience he had with this business.
Why would someone go out of his way to ask what animal hospital we were working with just to take the opportunity to make a negative comment? I also wonder what he’d have said if it didn’t happen to be the business he had his experience with? I’m guessing he’d have still taken the opportunity to tell his story.
I have no idea if the commenter’s experience was true or not, but it was completely irrelevant to what we originally posted and actually took attention away from the point of the original post. Additionally, if this person wanted to share a bad experience with the world, he should have just posted his experience on his own Facebook page, not ours.
Here’s the moral of the story folks: Just because there’s a comment button, doesn’t mean you should use it.
There’s a time and a place to insert your opinion. Generally, it’s only when someone has asked you for it. If you’re not sure, here’s a question you should ask yourself before you insert your opinion- either on social media or in person:
Is my comment:
A. completely relevant to the purpose of the original post
B. helpful to the original poster or anyone else who “tuned in” to read the original post and relevant comments
C. just a sidebar opinion that distracts or detracts from the original information.
If the answer is “C” keep your comments to yourself. If you really feel the original poster needs to know your information, find another way to share the information, such as a private message, text, or phone call.
And by the way, you should ask yourself the same question when you’re having a face-to-face conversation and tempted to insert your opinion. If a coworker comes in excited about the new laptop she ALREADY PURCHASED, now is not the time for you to say how terrible your experience was when you owned that laptop. It’s irrelevant now- SHE ALREADY BOUGHT THE LAPTOP!
Thanks for listening to my rant. Carry on with your day!