Opinion: Striving to make your opinions heard

Ryan Sampson

Ryan Sampson

Ryan Sampson is a senior architecture major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].

During recent years, blogging has become very popular, and to be honest, I hate the concept of it. I do like some of the results of the trend, and have in fact found many blogs that I enjoy reading regularly, but the idea of millions of people regularly writing about their thoughts or daily lives just turns me off.

Please ignore the fact that I have a weekly opinion column, and am therefore a raging hypocrite. To clarify, I like Pinterest and Tumblr and other sites that use the Internet and social media as a means of communicating and sharing information. I just think those who use it should do so to better something.

This has undoubtedly stemmed from the ability to comment on anything and everything that has begun to plague our online experiences. If someone doesn’t like a song on YouTube, they make it known; if an opinion differs, it can start a verbal war; and many people hide behind online personas to tease or even harass anyone from a peer to a complete stranger. Unfortunately, this candidness has also translated into physical connections, and people have become unabashedly brutal, mistaking it for honesty.

The same goes for the much-abused Facebook status update. Other than large life events and a few amusing exceptions, most of the information is useless and can be quite frustrating to read. Many would suggest I simply deactivate my Facebook — the people I know that have, said that they have loved it — but the site connects me to many old friends and distant family members, so I don’t see that as an option. Instead, I will continue to brood and block people from my news feed as necessary.

So what is it that makes everyone think that their voice and thoughts are relevant, especially when so many of them are negative? In the comment section of a design website, I recently saw many people complaining about the author’s opinions and writing style. Instead of bypassing the site during their Internet browsing, they stopped there with the sole intention of berating the man, who in my opinion was being ironic and sarcastic, not ignorant. Amusingly, one reader mentioned that he didn’t read the articles, just the comments.

So these are my thoughts: stop it. Stop wasting time listening to music you don’t like, reading blogs you hate and posting on Facebook about your horrible job at McDonald’s and how someone is annoying for wanting their sandwich to differ from the menu’s description. There is no need to frustrate yourself by reading things that anger you, when you could simply ignore that website.

Everyone has a right to their own opinion, and sometimes being critical can be a good thing, but consider being more conscious of what you post, and start by asking yourself if this will improve anything or benefit anyone. If the answer is no, keep it to yourself.