Much has been said since I wrote my blog post regarding my experience with Amazon.
It has made news headlines, and has sparked a lot of attention; both good and bad. What started out as a call to action became something entirely different.
It fostered a healthy discussion on how our social interactions might be monitored by third parties without our express consent. It allowed hundreds of people to come forth and say they are, or have experienced what I’ve recently went through. It even inspired another author to write a petition on change.org which has now been signed by ten thousand people!
On the same token, my post has sparked a rather unkind debate. Folks have questioned everything: from my integrity, honesty, relevancy, and have even gone as far as using social media, and blog platforms to say unkind things about me, and my work ethic.
The story didn’t go viral just because… and thousands of people share my same concerns. I don’t expect the world to agree with me, and I am most certainly not “dragging people into my woes with Amazon.” You have the choice to come up with your own conclusions, and you are free to have your opinion on the matter; but there are ways to express your thoughts in a respectful manner.
I knew I would be met with opposition, but never did I envision the countless beatdowns and verbal harassment by people within our community, like those I’ve experienced during the past week. It has gotten ugly, and it proves what the biggest authors have been saying all along. Our keyboards have turned into pitchforks, and our words are being used to destroy rather than to build.
Criticism is natural when addressing controversy, but there are these things called ethics and decorum that we must all adhere to. You may not like what I expressed in my blog post, and you are entitled to your opinion, but don’t be mean about it. Be a professional. Not a bully.
Use your words to do good, not to destroy. Some think I’ve become a “headache” within the community, and that’s okay. But don’t be unkind to me because you feel entitled to do so. I have feelings too. I have beliefs.
You may dislike my stance, and that’s okay, but don’t take out your frustrations on my work, or my integrity I’ve worked so hard to build.
Have courage and be kind. Is that too much to ask? Until we do, more nastiness will emerge, and more mud will be thrown, and what will that accomplish? Nothing.
We choose how me make positive changes in this world, and our behavior and how we react to things is entirely on us. Maybe I’m wired differently, or maybe I’m too inexperienced or naïve. But I stand firmly behind my beliefs, and I’ll never find it excusable to attack someone who thinks differently than me.
Whether or not you agree with my point of view is irrelevant. What IS relevant is respect, and from my firsthand experience these past seven days, that is a concept lost on many.
Maybe I view the world differently, maybe I believe inside each person there is kindness and compassion, tolerance where there is no agreement, and understanding when your viewpoints conflict with those of others.