Imagine this… you see a news article or video about something going on in the world. You find it interesting, perhaps you agree with what is being said, or maybe you just think others may find it interesting too. You click the “Share” button. What you may or may not realize is the moment you post that article or video, you have now opened the proverbial can of worms. Lately, with the barrage of US vs THEM commentators out there, this can of worms has sprouted horns, tail and has flames coming out of it’s mouth.
Sure, first you get a “like” or an “angry” or one of the other options available. Next you see someone commented. Considering we all have at least one, but more likely several, people on our friends list that like to stir the pot, you might be hesitant to see the comment. And then there it is – the devil’s advocate (DA) commentator who decides that you must be an idiot for posting this item – they’ll even tell you why your choice is so misled. This is not your hijacker. They’re referring to the subject of the post and that is okay, as long as they are not rude or disrespectful about it.
The subsequent commentator will be a good friend/family member (FM) who jumps to your defense as to why the DA commentator is wrong and you (the original poster) is so right in sharing this article/video. Blah blah blah…we all know this.
So when does the post hijacker come into the picture? It’s normally a few commentators into the thread. They choose 1 sentence, 1 word even to fixate on that is either in the original post or within the commentary on the thread. They grab hold and go off on a ranting rampage that completely diverges the thread from the original intent of the post. I will be honest that I have been guilty of it a time or two but I have tried to steer the thread back to the original message or I bow out of it all together.
Now that we know how it happens, how do we ensure we aren’t the dreaded post hijacker? Keep your comments on direct topic. Do not give in to temptation when someone else is veering off course. If you are tempted to go on a rant about a particular aspect of the original post, do it on your own page, in your own post. Too many times of late people are feeling that they have the right to take over someone’s post for their own agenda. Differing opinions and respectful debates are not only acceptable but encouraged by most.
If your post is hijacked, inform the perpetrator that it is not acceptable. Half the time that will work. You can also delete their comments from your thread. Lastly, you can unfriend and block the person if they cannot give up the rant.
When it comes down to it, everyone just wants their say. Everyone wants to be heard. Just remember your audience and to always be respectful.