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If You Don't Thank People Online, Things Can Go Crazy – Here's An Example

Photo from Howie R/Unsplash

EDIT: Users on the website incels.is have misinterpreted this article to be an attack piece targeting a sad and unsuccessful Reddit user. This was not the intention of this article at all. My purpose was to talk about something positive I realized when reading the Reddit thread — that something as simple as thanking people can make a big difference. Apologies to lonelysince2006, Efiliste, WorthlessSlavicShit, and SoycuckGodOfReddit for the miscommunication.

Recently a user known as FrothySolutions made a Reddit post asking for advice on finding a career without skills, money, or education at age 50. It got an overwhelmingly negative response because the poster turned down a lot of advice that was given. Some users openly wished that the poster would go homeless.

Yet at one point, the poster mentions that a few of the responses they received were useful. And if you look at the comments that they didn’t respond to, you’ll notice that compared to the other comments, these ones are a lot more useful and relevant for someone in the poster’s situation.

From this, I can collect that part of the reason that FrothySolutions came off so difficult was that they didn’t send “thank you” responses to the responses that were useful. Yet this seems to be pretty much unacknowledged by the commenters. Everybody’s talking about how they made comments that dismissed the advice, but people aren’t talking about their lack of response to the helpful comments.

Honestly, I feel that if the poster thanked the comments that were helpful, they could give negative feedback on other comments and still not anger the community as much as they did. It might have allowed the readers to believe that they were open to at least some advice, just aware of the fact that there aren’t many options open for them.

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with politely explaining why someone’s advice doesn’t solve the situation. Instead of discouraging those responses, I think a better takeaway from this situation is that FrothySolutions should thank others when they provide an answer that is supportive.

Expressing gratitude for online comments is a small thing that one can easily forget. However, I think this example suggests that it can completely change the tone of one’s online interactions.

You can also view this article at https://medium.com/non-monetized-together/if-you-dont-thank-people-online-things-can-go-crazy-here-s-an-example-369c1a9611db

#Netiquette #Communication #OnlineDiscussions #Gratitude #SocialSkills

Medium comments:

Honestly, I feel that if the poster thanked the comments that were helpful, they could give negative feedback on other comments and still not anger the community as much as they did.

In this instance, I'd agree with many of the posters on the thread FS seemed to be very difficuly, expecting, and many posters pointed out, that they expected them to magically resolve FS's career issues.

Beyond generic advice, they can do nothing. In addition, FS offered no real specifics on what they wanted to do. People suggested going to school, online Python courses, even jobs at a supermarket. But FS seemed to just blame their own lack of current skills (which is FS's own fault).

I think that is a prime example of an individual doing the barest minimum for years (in this case monitoring numbers not knowing what they mean) and not upskilling, assuming that thejob would exist forever.

Michael Zwierzanski

Thanks for the perspective. What would you do if you were in the discussion?

Kevin the Nonmonetized

I'd have bowed out gracefully.

I have no time for throwing shade on people on the internet. But I wouldn't have engaged with FS for a long time. The fact that at every suggestion for a career (e.g. coding) was met with some excuse, an every suggestion of getting a 'job' (e.g. supermarket) was met with dismissal would have turned me off putting in the effort.

And yourself, Kevin?

Michael Zwierzanski

Ideally, I would probably say that you don’t need to meet all the requirements to apply for a job.

Kevin the Nonmonetized

Probably nothing. There’s not much hope for FS.

Kevin the Nonmonetized


Michael Zwierzanski