Be careful where you put your time and energy
You may or may not know that I am a digital marketing consultant for small businesses. Actually, I founded a small agency and my favorite thing in digital marketing is playing with SEO. Normally I’m not a big fan of the numbers involved in running audits or analyzing spreadsheets and tracking the movement of things but when it comes to SEO, I love it. What I don’t love, I can easily tolerate because it’s so little of my time and energy. But that isn’t the point of this post. That is simply relevant background information.
I wrote a post a few months ago about nose rings and cultural appropriation and it got a lot of comments. Like, a lot. Probably double the number most of my posts get and every single one of the additional comments was not just spam but hateful rhetoric. Nasty comments about immigrants and women and one really weird one about sex with Russian women. Most of them linked to the same site, which I won’t validate by posting here.
Clearly none of those commenters had read the post. What rational human would leave a comment like that on a post like mine? Very few.
Knowing what I know about SEO and how the web works, my money is on the fact those comments were left by bots programmed to search for keywords that my post contained. I don’t optimize my blog. This site isn’t professional in any way and is merely for my own thoughts, the same way I shout random things at the internet at large on twitter, but with more characters. I could have looked up what keywords the blog post is ranking (probably poorly) for and worked backwards.
I could take my revenge by using Blackhat negative SEO tricks* on that site and punishing them for trying to use my site to build their authority. But I’m not going to. I’m not going to because it’s not worth my time and energy.
I only have so much time and energy to spare and I have to choose every day whether to spend it on something positive that helps me and the things I care about (feminism, my career, nomadism, my family, etc) move forward or on pulling something else down. I try every day to focus on the positive and as tempting as it is sometimes to punish those who offend me, I’m better off spending that time and energy on lifting up the things that matter. So instead of rewarding those commenters with my energy and a link, I’m going to link to my favorite group right now: Recall Aaron Persky.
I’m also going to go message the leader of my favorite feminist group and see if there is anything I can do to help them. That would be time and energy well spent.
What are you spending your time and energy on?
* Of course I know Blackhat and even greyhat SEO. How do you avoid something if you don’t know what it is and what it entails?