If you ask the average person, most will say they hate being the center of controversy and avoid confrontation like the plague. Luckily for me, it is my natural personality to enjoy being in the center of a debate and typically, I don’t shy away from spreading my opinions.
In the blogging world, taking one side in a controversial topic can be advantageous to your blog. No matter what you are selling or promoting, whether you are a musician, a business or a personal blogger, every once in a while, you will need to write a controversial blog post. Here’s how to do it the right way.
Take a Stand/Pick A Side
Pick a side and stick with it. Thinking this through for some time will make it a worthwhile post. Don’t just pick a side willy nilly. Really consider your position. Consider the arguments against it. Think of ways to defend your position against those arguments. Address the most obvious ones in your post.
Don’t Back Down
Once you’ve picked a side, don’t be swayed. Stick to your position. If your topic is controversial enough and timely enough, you are very likely to get negative comments. Be prepared for this. And be ready to deal with them. Stay focused on your position in the controversy.
It can be easy to think that others have a valid viewpoint. Don’t agree with them unless you can validate your side within that agreement. They may have a point. But so do you. Stick to your position no matter what.
Sift Through the Trolls vs Productive Yet Negative Commenting
There are two types of negative comments online. There are trolls and there are actual readers who will put out negative comments. Trolls do not deserve your attention. But if you have a real reader who disagrees with you, this deserves your attention.
Trolls are typically anonymous and have shown up out of the blue. They will not typically leave any links back to their own websites/social media profiles. They will not reveal their true identities. Additionally, their arguments will be weak, hateful, attacking, and insulting in nature. They will often lie or use arguments from biased sources. Ignore trolls. Delete their comments. Do not argue with them.
On the other hand, sometimes your regular readers will present valid or concerning negative comments. Treat them with respect. They deserve to be heard. And sometimes you will be able to change their minds or have a respectful debate. Don’t be afraid of negative comments like these. They are part of a productive discourse.
Don’t Name Call
Pretty sure this one speaks for itself. When you are presenting as an expert in your topic, there is nothing that will make your side of the argument go down the drain faster than if you name call or use immature debate tactics. Stay respectful. Don’t drop yourself down to anyone’s immaturity levels. Remember, you are the professional here.
No matter how many negative comments you get, stay respectful. If you have a comment thread that gets out of control and you can’t respond to them all, don’t. Just let it go. Stay respectful on the comments you write.
There are many reasons to write a controversial blog post. Sometimes it is necessary. Many people are afraid of confrontation or they fear getting into online arguments. But if we are ever to have true meaningful discourse online, then we must know how to fight battles that are important to us.