Posts Tagged ‘internet

A month or so ago, I made the mistake of criticising a fellow student by group email.  Even though I had tried to be positive, constructive, funny and encouraging, it wasn’t received that way.  The replies from the person concerned were really unpleasant and had the opposite effect from what I was trying to achieve.

Now, this post is not about the other person. It’s about what I could have done to avoid receiving a barrage of unpleasantness. We did kiss and make up, by the way, but when I saw this article on Freshly Pressed today, it reminded me how easily misconstrued things can get.  I don’t just have to watch my language, I have to check the tiniest of nuances.

Julia from Measure of Doubt, who wrote the article, makes several relevant points.  One of the things she mentions is to depersonalise.  Don’t start a criticism with the word ‘you’re…’. Whoops.

Also, something she didn’t mention, I criticised on a minor issue -the straw that broke the camel’s back, or should I say the one-line email that snapped the student’s patience – rather than a significant one.  So then it seemed like my argument was out of proportion. Why am I making a fuss about a throwaway comment?  Whoops again.

Communicating via the internet seems to easily trigger our emotional side, Julia tells us. “The internet is full of emotional tripwires.”  What a great expression! And how true in my case.

What have I learned from this experience?

Quite simply, never, NEVER to reply to an email that narks me without giving myself time to de-stress about it.  Even if I am criticising positively, I must acknowledge that there will be tripwires I just can’t see.

Better still, save the criticism till I’m face to face. And if I don’t have that option because I don’t know the person well enough? Then it’s probably not worth it…


I was just reading this blog from Transforming Decor that tells us that 90 per cent of home buyers look online to find the home they want.  This is a US statistic, but I bet the UK are not far behind.

Image from reckon, much as we love to look at the papers to see what houses are going for in our area, or to have a ‘wishful thinking’ moment, most of us who are serious about buying go to one of the major websites, such as Rightmove, Zoopla or Primelocation.  As it happens, Rightmove have been the best ones for us, though I gather that Zoopla is good for finding homes being sold privately or by auction, and Primelocation is great for London buyers.  Newspaper marketing is more to give agents visibility for people who might put their house on the market.

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What does this mean for us? Well, when we chose our agent we made sure they felt the same way as we did about this; indeed, we were online before we were in print.

Image from www.primelocation.comHowever, you can never be sure.  Your buyer might just be an empty nester who doesn’t believe in computers, for instance.  So we’ve been regularly in the papers too.

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But I have to say, I wish there was a house-selling equivalent of online dating.  You get matched up to your ideal buyer, you see if you get on, and if not, you get matched up to the next one.  The current system is similar, but wouldn’t it be great to have such a service?

Especially if they give you your money back if they don’t get you a buyer within 3 months…

I’ve had a relatively productive day today.  I’ve made corrections on one of the two pieces of work I need to finish while I’m out here.  When I get home it should only require the odd tweak here and there till it’s fit to hand in.

The word ‘relatively’, though, because yesterday I finally managed to persuade the computer to connect to the wireless router.

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As such, I have fallen prey to the vultures of the internet.  Facebook circled round, saw me at a mental block with my work and swooped  in.  Miniclip was a partner in crime; for the best part of two hours it had me playing a particularly unimpressive game.  Even Twitter gathered round to peck at the remnants.

Somehow, when I have work to do, I always spend more time faffing about on the net than I do on the work. This is why I try to go to the library to study when I get the chance.  No connection there.  But there was a sleeping baby to consider on this occasion, so I was connected, and as ever, I became a victim of the vultures.

One day they’ll make a magic potion I can take before I sit down to work, which keeps me out of sight of those hunchbacked birds.

But, knowing me, I probably wouldn’t take it even if they did.  I seem to be a willing victim.