What is trolling?
I honestly do not know of any photographer and/or artist who has never had any case of trolling against (at least) one of their works. Many professionals that were consulting along with me about anything in photography or about my own art have told me in some point of the correspondence that they sometimes seem to feel a bit ashamed to put on their work. They say that people on the social media “crucify” or denigrate their work, and basically let them feel useless in what they do.
Possible Reasons & Solutions
The trolling activity is not new, and this is not endemic only to professional photographers. Some of those trolls simply love to do their stuff in each and every group they are members at. Now, I can go directly to the psychological reasoning of why they do it and talk (or write actually) on it for several hours. I do not find that necessary. I can mention the specific big reasons why they do it, so you can have this info in your head just before you happen to even try to answer them:
1. They are JEALOUS in your work: simply as that! Many of them are just finding it hard to get such results as you have gotten, and they are simply pretty much jealous of what others achieved. So when they troll you, simply think about it as their ‘voice of jealousy’ that is talking out of their computer keyboard! 2. They feel useless in their lives: yes, some of us studied in University, some did not, some got a great deal of success in whatever we do (not necessarily because we studied academic studies), and some of us have real, pure talent. This is really not an issue, because photography requires dedication and practice, and the results will come eventually. But the troll, oh the trolls, they have a different system attached to their engines. They simply do not have anything really in their hands that can suggest they are superior in what they do. This actually drives them crazy to see other people’s good talent; yes, they feel (and know very well) that their way to reach such good job requires them to pass a long way before any real result is shown up. What is the easiest way to try to make you stop publishing your work? Yes, you are right, they will troll. A bad word here, a ridiculous reaction there, and there you have a troll in action. Don’t let this take the air off your wings! 3. They do not really feel successful enough in their job, so they fear that your work throws shadows on theirs. They actually might even have good one or two artwork under their sleeve, but the internal feeling dictates them to poke, denigrate and let everyone else in the group to see how they are “superior” to you. This type of trolls is so tricky and will absolutely make you want to answer their comments. Why? Because this type of trolls write in a technical language, even write in very beautiful metaphoric language to actually show that they, so-called, “know the material” and that you are such a “rooky”. I know that this type of trolling may sometimes be problematic to notice due to the higher technical language but make no mistake – this is trolling in all its glory. Rest assure that other people from the community will (yes, they WILL!) answer them and crucify those trolls. The community in general is not stupid; the community or social media groups know exactly who the troll and who the real artist are! Thus, swallow your saliva, pay no attention to it, and rest assure that your work now gets even greater attention from everyone around! 😊
“So Ryàn, what shall I do if a troll comments on my work?”
This is a repetitive question that I get from many of my followers around the world who make a contact with me either on email or text messages. I answer: “just do nothing!!” I advise you to act as if those people do not exist. If you happened to be confused by the rush of the moment and did write a reply to their comment, please do this in good taste. Show them that they are really big ZEROS. Do not curse, swear, or talk in harsh slang. That is actually what they really want you to do. You need to write in good technical language that does not sound justified. And at the end, always, but always, write them the sentence: “I wish you have a lovely day!”
This is just something they cannot cope with. How come they write to you such a comment and you keep on being calm?! This makes them shiver on their chairs out of inability to answer you the way they really like to. As I mentioned above, the community or the social media group are not stupid and the troll will get their fair-share from others. This makes them, the trolls, such a shame to themselves, and you get to be the hero of the day!
So conquer your urge to reply, and simply share with the world the work you love to do!
I would love to hear from you! What do you think about the problems arising from trolling. Have you felt it, too? I would love to read your remarks or questions and answer or assist in the best way I can. Write to me through this website, or through my professional Facebook page: www.facebook.com/ArtisteRyan
A new Facebook group for professional photographers is now opened in order to post only work done using professional gear (DSLR, Mirror-less, and Medium Format cameras only) and the purpose is to allow professionals to post their work and get real constructive critics, while eliminating any options for trolls to post their poisonous comments. The group has just established in July 2019 and we call all of you professionals al around the world to join this community.
Link to join: https://www.facebook.com/groups/385849385372524/?ref=group_header
or simply search for the name of the group: " Professional Photography + Constructive Critics: No trolling is allowed"