The internet troll. We have all experienced them. The typical stereotype goes something like this: Single, bitter, perhaps jobless, nothing else to do, endlessly surfing the net for opportunities to pour out some of their overabundant flow of misplaced negativity anywhere and everywhere, seemingly without any knowledge of appropriate human social graces, punctuation or proper grammar . You know what I am talking about. We run into them everywhere on the internet. We are at risk 24/7 from their lambasting attempts. These people are most often people that we do not even know in any of our business or social circles. They attempt to turn any post into something negative. They point out all your flaws, or at least the ones that they perceive that you have…without even knowing you. They can make you doubt yourself, worry about issues that aren’t even there, and even have you consider removing a carefully crafted post that you took a lot of pride in. Why I ask you? What is their purpose? What is there to gain from this behavior? What is the best way to respond or deal with them?
We even experience these creatures on our office social media. They like to comment on everything, even if they have never been to our office. We can post some great results of one of our aesthetic services, complete with a smiling and happy patient that is really satisfied and glad that they finally did something for themselves. These folks will come out of nowhere accusing us of using filters or insulting the patient’s picture. I say if you are not interested in our procedures, please refrain from even looking at our stuff! No one is forcing you to look! There are like a bazillion things to peruse on the internet. I am sure you can find something else!
I think that they fling these insults under the misguided perception that they can somehow hurt us, when in fact, the only people they are potentially hurting are the patients who were brave enough to go through with a service to make themselves feel better! Our practice will go on, believe it or not, even with their insults. I am not calling us invincible or anything, but I am saying that we will not stop providing safe and effective services to patients just because they post something ridiculous. My usual rule of thumb is to post a professional response one time and ask that they refrain from negativity, politely explain why their perception might be incorrect, and kindly dis invite them from looking at our site. If this does not work, then I am forced to block them from being able to comment. It may sound like a childish move, but sometimes that is the only recourse we have.
I find these creatures to be particularly pervasive on internet marketplace sites as well. Let me be clear. When I have some gently used piece of junk that I want to sell, I do not spend hours researching what the true value is. I just fling it up on the marketplace site, pick a price and make it clear it is negotiable and see what happens. I promise with my whole heart that I am not trying to “pull a fast one” on anybody. I am just trying to see if I can sell some crap on the internet like everybody else. If you don’t like what I listed or you think the price is not right? MOVE ON! NO ONE IS FORCING YOU TO MAKE AN OFFER! I am especially fond of those who get so excited with slinging criticisms that they seemingly forgot how to speak or type in English for the moment. If you can’t spell outrageous( often spelled as out rages) , I am officially taking away your privilege of accusing me of it…..lol. Have a fantastic day folks!