Mar 16 2010

The trouble with internet trolls and stalkers


I planned to write a post about how to handle online trolls and stalkers, since I am lucky enough to have what I classify as a pseudo stalker of my own. The malicious and unproductive behavior of these pests is somewhat fascinating, in a sadistic sort of way, and certainly good fodder for an entertaining psychoanalysis. But everything I just said, and anything more, is exactly what a troll or stalker wants to hear.

Plus, once I started to research the subject, I discovered that there’s a ton of helpful information, web sites, posts and comments already available. So, anything I would have to say wouldn’t exactly be new (unless I made some stuff up, which would have been fun but misleading). Anyway, I abandoned the idea…but pulled together some of the resources I discovered, should you ever have trouble with trolls and stalkers.

The most important thing to remember when considering how to deal with a troll or stalker is that they enjoy creating conflict and doing harm to others. And, they want to get a reaction out of you. From How to Deal with Trolls:  “When you fight with them, they win. When you try to reason with them, they win. When you give them attention, they get exactly what they want.” I gave my slanderous friend the pleasure of all three of these things because I felt I had to defend my integrity. I was caught off guard. I didn’t know. Now I do.

The best way to deal with trolls or stalkers is to ignore them. When you ignore them, they don’t get the satisfaction of creating an escalated conflict. This is hard to do but be assured that most everyone else online will realize this person is a troll and will dismiss their comments.

Here are a few of the sources I found that might be helpful. Good luck!

Wikipedia: Trolls (Internet)

How to Deal with Trolls on Your Professional Blog

Beware of Online Stalkers

Internet Stalkers: Survive, expose and deal with the slime of the web (This one is from which generally is a great site to explore.)

Mar 2 2010

Pepsi: A bad social media day at the office


The Pepsi Refresh Project is a good study in social media campaigns. Pepsi has had multiple communication issues and technical difficulties. As a result, the company has received bad press from a wide range of news and information sources–from Tech Crunch to The New York Times.

Tech Crunch headlines Pepsi’s campaign as “Social Media Gone Awry.” The New York Times says, “Pepsi Charity Contest Trips Over Its Own Submission Rules.”

Why, if you’re a company the size of Pepsi, with the best possible resources at your feet, would you fumble like this? Common sense (and several failed/bad social media campaigns) tells us that the last place you want to mess up is among a bunch of social media enthusiasts who, by the way, are also consumers. Extremely vocal consumers.

Besides the communication issues and technical problems, I am suspect of the number of people who post comments saying, “Pepsi is the best soft drink ever” and “I love Pepsi.” This one is good: “I’m drinking Pepsi right now. I love it!”

Anyway, I have personally been involved in the Pepsi Refresh campaign. I have been working with the Boise Public Schools Foundation and a BSU PR student to vie for a grant for Boise public schools. Our idea is called “Refresh Boise Public Schools.” We submitted it on Feb. 1 for voting in March. But we found out yesterday that the submission had not been accepted. Pepsi said we would know one way or the other two weeks after submission. Then it became 3 weeks. Then it became Feb. 28 at 11:59 p.m. We weren’t notified until March 1 at 3 p.m. By that time, it was too late to resubmit our application for the next round of voting! Worse yet, we aren’t able to access our application to make modifications. So, we’ll have to start over. Other people have had similar problems. And, several are complaining about celebrities being able to vie for the grants, etc. Go to the Pepsi Refresh Facebook fan page and you’ll see what I’m talking about/can make your own assessment.

I expect we’ll hear more about this-through every medium imaginable. Time to pay attention, Pepsi, or the bad day you’ve had could turn into a year.