This morning I was woken up rudely by the sound of my heater acting up. I thought for a split second that it had just exploded. I wasn’t ready to get out of bed, had a bad night, so I decided to check my social media accounts. Made the mistake of going onto Twitter. That’s never a good thing to do.
I wouldn’t call it instant rage. I’m not an angry person anymore. I’ve worked hard at letting go of small things. But this tweet did not sit well with me. I took a screen shot and decided to write a post about it instead.
Here we go. Another blue check mark person mansplaining about how people shouldn’t hide behind fake names on the Internet. Like, what? Come on dude. Some people have very good reasons for not wanting tweets out there for the public to see.
I made my Twitter account private last year and there’s no way I’d open it up to the world now. When I noticed that more and more local news stations were using Twitter and Reddit in their stories, I closed everything up and changed my username.
It’s not like I have anything to hide. It’s more for privacy. Twitter is not my favorite platform. I have two accounts. One to promote music and art. And one just to shoot the shit with online friends. I have about 1700 followers. I’m followed by some blue check mark accounts but I use it mostly to connect with other local people and friends.
This tweet brought up some issues I had online with a stalker. I’ve had a few over the years. Super fans who turn into super admirers. It’s the downside to being a musician. I even had one super fan ask me for my home address to “send me a gift.”
Like dude, no. Just…eesh. No.
Stalked in real life
I was stalked in real life before by a guy I dated for a couple of months. I wound up moving in with friends. He moved out of his parent’s house and lived in his truck. My friends and I would come home from the bar to see him sleeping in the truck down the road. Once he was sleeping in our parking stall until my very large male roommate told him to leave me alone. He was harmless. But these situations can always escalate.
The guy even proposed to me the next day over the phone.
“Let’s get married!” he said.
“What the hell?” I said. “Why?”
“Because – why not?” he replied.
I laughed at him on the phone thinking this couldn’t be serious. But he was. Thankfully, he left me alone after that.
Stalked online for saying no
I was stalked on WordPress by an unstable user after asking him to stop posting inappropriate comments on my posts. He told me he was in love me with and left sexual suggestions for me to read – daily.
I told him no. He became even more obsessed and started harassing me daily. Sending me little messages like “fuck you” or “fuck off” or “get help”. Reports to support were basically ignored. The person is still on here. I found multiple posts written about me that weren’t taken down. Even to the point of saying that I should kill myself.
Yeah, that actually happened. After two years of blogging without incident. I shouldn’t have to make my blog private to stop ONE seriously deranged individual. That person need psychiatric evaluation. Seems this was a pattern for him with women on the internet.
I don’t write about this much because this is a public blog. Even if you block a reader, they can still access it with other accounts. Or by using a VPN. This is why it’s so easy to be stalked and harassed online.
Harassed for expressing an opinion
This has happened to – I’m sure to all of us. Twitter is a vile place for it. So are the the YouTube comments. I would have people flock to my websites or music profiles and leave hateful comments there. They would report videos or just make my life a living hell.
Can you hurt someone online? Absolutely.
It got to the point that I started using aliases on social media. When I left my job to go on sick leave, I didn’t want my employer reading my tweets. So, I removed my surname from all platforms.
The people who like my content know where to follow me. I’ve decided that being followed by thousands of people is not good for my own mental health.
Using multiple accounts and aliases
I have come to learn to use multiple accounts for various things. My closer friends online have access to my alias accounts. Same for Instagram. I had to make that one private because of the amount of scammers and spam bots there are now.
TikTok is terrible for this too. Most of my followers are fake accounts. I’ve just started blocking people with no content. That’s not the kind of attention I want. I closed down my music accounts after getting creepy comments from guys.
“You have beautiful hands,” one said.
Or “You are so sexy. I’ve never seen anyone so sexy.” — how can you tell that just from hands?? And I was playing a song on the piano. It’s not like I was doing anything sexual.
My therapist and I laughed at that comment. She said – jokingly, “Maybe you should get into hands only content, there’s are people who like that.” We laughed, because I can take a joke.
I’ve considered using an alias here for blogging. I still might. Mostly to avoid family drama. They don’t exactly understand blogging. They’ve never been supportive of my pursuit of a career in communications. To them, that’s not “real” work.
I’m working on several books and I will definitely be using an alias. I will advertise them here but on private posts only. So, make sure to request access to those posts if you read my blog regularly.
Comments are now moderated. People must be logged into leave comments. It’s not because I have anything to hide. It’s the opposite.
It’s because I’ve been hit by spam bots and they’re just pissing the hell out of me. WordPress has a serious problem when it comes to spam.
Freedom of speech does not give you the right to be an asshole
We live in a world where there are blurred lines between “freedom of speech” and “hate speech”. The mob mentality is real. And so is outrage culture.
This blogger, is certainly tired of both. And I refuse to participate in it with my real name.
Does that mean you should block me?
Hell, to the no.
It gives me the freedom to talk about subjects I couldn’t normally talk about. Subjects that my readers are interested in.
If using an alias makes me a bad person. Then what hopes do actual criminals have?
Like come on. Dude. Get a grip.
Edit: to the person who told me to “be smarter” – did you even read the post? I’ve explained how I’m taking precautions. Sorry for the drama in the comments. The creep has been blocked. I am NOT here to pick up men or chat offline. This MY blog, that I PAY for to vent about life issues.