Critics & Judges & Trolls, Oh My: Navigating The Blogosphere When The Blogosphere Gets Rough (Or, Can't We All Just Get Along?)

BlogHer Original Post

The blogosphere, sometimes, can seem a hostile place. Even in its most civil corners, discussions can quickly take a turn for the judgmental/critical/unpleasant, and even the least controversial bloggers can be subjected to hate mail, censure and nasty commentary. How do bloggers deal with harsh responses from their audiences? How should we deal with it? Should we go the Dooce route, and "monetize the hate"? Close comments? Never open e-mail? And: how do we distinguish between critical commentary and trollage? Where's the line between lively debate and nastiness? Isn't a little criticism and disagreement good for discourse? How do you keep dialogue open and keep out the trolls?

Tanis Miller of, Kristen Chase of MotherhoodUncensored and and Catherine Connors of have all battled their fair share of trolls and other lesser bridge-dwellers and lived to tell about it. And they'd each of them do it again - ad again and again and again - if it meant keeping up lively discourse and provoking interesting discussions. Come discuss the whys and hows and wherefores of navigating - and using - criticism and judgment and, yes, even outright nastiness to further dialogue and keep the community open. And never be afraid to cross those troll-ridden bridges again.