Last month I received not one, but two rude and sarcastic remarks from a YouTube viewer. Now, that isn’t uncommon. I receive good and bad comments every day. And those of you who know me realize I am not an actor, speaker, voice-over talent or anything of the kind — I am an artist, writer and pretty much a recluse in my office. But like many I wanted to share my knowledge of the publishing world, since my experience is from over 30 years in the advertising, design and marketing industry.
I do not have a professional voice. In fact, I hate hearing my own voice on my podcasts or videos. My goal was to create helpful videos so the self-publisher wouldn’t feel so lost when trying to enter the publishing world. I wanted to show them that they could do it, and if I stumble a little, I apologize.
Unfortunately, though, there are days when my tongue gets twisted and my videos do not go as smoothly as I would like. Especially after an exhausting week of creating step-by-step video. I also do not have professional editing equipment or a quality microphone. I use a free online source (Screenr.com) and I only have 5 minutes to work with. And my mic is built into my machine. I am an amateur, and though I would love to create hollywood-style videos, I do not have the means at this time to do so.
For the most part, my fans do not mind my relaxed podcasts and videos. But there are some people whom I am sure I annoy.
The following two comments were not constructive. And they were more sarcastic than evaluative. Perhaps the viewer was having a bad day — another reason to think before you post.
First, let me post the comments here and then describe what I found out about this person and probably why he said it.
VIDEO: How to Self Publish to Amazon KDP (KINDLE DIRECT PUBLISHING) Program – Part 1
COMMENT: “Please focus. Maybe a script or teleprompter? You gave me a headache with the stumbling!”
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VIDEO: Self Publishing to Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing – part 2
Comment: “LOL! They must have fixed it!!! You have to click on the + or – sign to make the drop down/up menu work. Geeeeeeeesus!”
Let’s Evaluate, shall we?
First, as I said I am not an actor nor do I have any special voice training. And, though I would like to, I simply cannot spend hours creating and re-creating videos. I wish I could, but I simply cannot at this time.
Yet, no matter how imperfect my acting, I hardly think my pauses and ums cause headaches. But perhaps they do (ask my hubby) ;) I am an amateur.
No matter how benign the person thinks his statement was, it was hurtful. And no matter how hard we try to become thick skinned — it isn’t possible. So I can only hope this person was having a “bad day”. Because if he wants to offer his services to anyone, this does not seem the best way to do it.
Second, the videos are from January 2012. There will be changes, and the “drop down” issue I mention in the video was a problem up until I made the video. I complained to Amazon, and, yes… they must have fixed it. but as we all know, different computers using different Browsers act differently, so there isn’t to say that the same problem would not exist on another platform. I was shocked that it was working when I made the video — and I guess he didn’t like my surprised comment. (sorry)
NOW, let’s look at the decenter. I will not give his name, and his actual comments have been removed from my Youtube account. And, unfortunately, I have blocked him as well. Rather than having to deal with these disruptions, I would prefer to not see any more of his comments in the future.
So who is this person? He IS a voice-over ‘talent’. In fact, he just started a blog (2 posts total as of August 23, 2012). As a professional he should realize that not everyone will be at the caliber as he, nor have the equipment to create a professional video as he does.
I am shocked a professional would ridicule another video simply on the basis of not being in the same profession as he. I am sure if he did a song and dance video, professionals would not climb out the woodwork to criticize his technique. (perhaps they would, but that, too would be rude.)
The key is to understand that we all have talents — all of us. And these talents manifest them to different degrees. I have the ability to make videos — but the voice over talent part is probably a 3/ 5 stars. Not Oscar worthy, but good enough to get the point across.
Therefore, Mr. Smith (yes, that is his last name), I hope you understand that not everyone will have your caliber of expertise, and you should be grateful for that. It will allow for more work for your business. But I would have a very hard time recommending you to anyone, not because of your talent, which I know nothing about, but because your lack of consideration and common decency for your fellow man. The Internet may be a place of anonymity — but it doesn’t excuse poor behavior.
A better response would have been, “I am a professional voice over talent — I would love to help you with your videos.” That would have resulted in possible work, and more importantly, recommendations to my 30,000 unique visitors a month.