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What to do about online trolls?

Are you afraid to go live online or post videos because of trolls (a person who intentionally upsets people on the internet.) This seems to be a common fear voiced by my students.

Well there's a few things to discuss on this topic:

Firstly, I look at those comments like seeds- if you water them they will grow. Do your best to ignore them and do not "water" them by responding or letting them bother you. If you feel even better you can delete them depending on the platform you are working with. For example on Tik Tok there are comment filters which you can select specific words from showing up in your feeds. This may comfort you because you may never see these comments to begin with. On platforms like Facebook you can delete the comments.

Once you decide how you can deal with all this, I suggest you look at this from another point of view. Soon enough, live shows will be alive and kicking. We've now reached a moment in entertainment where you will likely be an online performer BEFORE a live performer. (A vast change from 20 years ago.) If you are lucky enough to make it onto a live stage; be warned that "Trolls" cannot be filtered or deleted. Part of being a performer means gaining the courage to stand before an audience and handle the pressure. You have the privilege of standing on stage because people respect your confidence to share a message. In most performances, there will be distractions. In my experience this can be rowdy audience members, rude talking during an intimate song or noise from the band on another stage. Try to treat online trolls a valuable lesson towards one day becoming the ultimate goal of online performances.


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