Thursday, March 6, 2014

Ann Rice to take on Bullies on Amazon

Bullying is a fact of life; however it's never been so rife as it is now with the internet around - and the word 'internet' is a very old word if you look it up.  It's been around for ages!

But really, us writers write for readers to read and be entertained.  However, when authors put their work up on popular e-book distributors such as Amazon, they do expect to receive some reviews and feedback.  But they don't wish to be bullied and abused by their readers - especially those of whom don't even have the courage to sign their Real Life names to their statements.  

So, Ann Rice has taken this head on - along with other authors - and signed a petition to get Amazon to make reviewers and anyone putting in feedback to not be able to use their screen name; that they must use their real life name.  This will bring the bullies out of the dark and into the light where they will be noticed and seen - and hopefully, they will either have the courage to actually say what they mean in a better context or not say anything at all.  

Being a writer myself, I have suffered through some bullying in the past where people have told me my work was 'RS' (this means 'really shitty') and didn't tell me why or how I could fix it.  And then they'd proceed to treat me like a child if I had an idea for something - and this was while I was in a writers guild.  Now, the internet has a huge variety of writers groups and guilds all online, as well as publishers and other ways of helping us get published.  This doesn't give the public permission to throw crap at authors just because publishing has become a little more public and a little more accessable to just about anyone out there (whether you're a good author or not). 

What this means is to be a good reviewer.  Don't push anyone around if you're not prepared to sign your Real Life name at the bottom of the letter (where every last soul on the planet is going to see it) and if you think what you say to somebody won't come around and bite you in the butt... you're wrong.  At some point, somewhere in the future; it will.  Everything is relevant when you put it online.  So, be very careful what you say, what you write and how you react to things online.  Until my next post, happy reading.

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