No good deed goes unpunished

My recent entry in the “No good deed goes unpunished” category is my decision to heed the call to post comments to this article – in the Wall Street Journal, no less.  Before you go clicking on the link, I’ll warn you that it may not open if you are not a subscriber. Actually, I’m not a subscriber either, but often you can read articles if you click through a link posted through social media. That is how I can get through the paywall to comment. At any rate, the article is about how a few towns in the Southern Tier of upstate NY, including mine, are looking into seceding from New York to join Pennsylvania so that they can get permits to use high volume hydrofracking to extract shale methane from beneath their land.

Which is a totally bogus concept on sooooooo many levels.

I took time to formulate a comment, specifically as a resident of this area, not thinking about the prospect that I would get replies sent to my email. While I originally regularly responded to replies to my comments on fracking, I gave it up months ago to protect myself from some nasty personal attacks. They still got posted, of course, but I didn’t see them. I didn’t go back to articles on which I had commented and assiduously refused to click on the Facebook notifications generated by Gannett papers and other sites that use FB as a commenting platform, supposedly to increase civility. I also seldom read others’ comments when I was posting.

Getting replies to my WSJ comment by email reminded me of several things.
1.)  Many people who comment are snarky.  One respondent took great glee in explaining that there is this thing called the Internet with a search engine called Google and therefore he could tell I was lying because the Marcellus shale underlies so much of NY  that it was obvious there was all this methane just waiting to be extracted. Which leads to…
2.)  Many people who comment don’t know what they are talking about. So, when I explain that the shale needs to be a certain thickness, depth, and thermal maturity to contain significant amounts of recoverable methane, they go on as though none of that matters.
3.)  Some people refuse to believe a fact if it doesn’t go along with their political viewpoint.
4.)  Some people don’t think there should be any taxes, but they seem to want all the things that tax money provides for their community, state, and the country.
5.)  Responding to replies is a major time sink.  I spent hours and hours on this one article commentary, which reminded me of how many hours I used to spend on this. While there is still a fair amount of commentary that I participate in on fracking and climate change, I am grateful not to be spending so much time on it as I did before the impending NYS HVHF ban was announced.

And, for the record, no New York town is going to be leaving the state.

Author: Joanne Corey

Please come visit my eclectic blog, Top of JC's Mind. You can never be sure what you'll find!

4 thoughts on “No good deed goes unpunished”

  1. Excellent post!!!!! I am of the opinion that the internet gives anonymity to people who would not think of being as snarky and nasty otherwise. As for the ones who think they know everything and either give incorrect information or just plain ignore facts? I do not think they deserve anyone discussing anything with them. They are fed “facts” and regurgitate them back because they do not want to fact check. Their time is precious don’t you know. (smiley)



    1. Thanks, Reggie, for commenting – and not being snarky. I always comment using my own name, except for one out-of-town newspaper where I use my location. Because many publications are using Facebook as a platform for comments, there is not only my name but also my photo, which got uncomfortable when opponents would come to our rallies or press events. Unfortunately, some of these guys were also nasty in person.

      I admit that I am the nerdy, analytical type, so it disturbs me when people don’t believe facts, or worse, don’t believe there is such a thing. Of course, however, you are correct that it is not worth discussing anything with someone who isn’t operating on the same fact-level. I will go back to my hard-learned restraint on replies now…


  2. We always use our names when commenting. Most others don’t. We also always research before commenting. Again, most others don’t. It’s always a dilemma… to comment or not. If you make a point contrary to what the majority of the readers/viewers of a given media outlet hold, you’ll get flack – most of it ill-informed, snarky, or just plain ignorant. That’s as true of the WSJ and FOX as it is of PBS and NPR. This is the way Americans now communicate with each other.


    1. Yay! Two more commenters who use their own names and do their research! Sadly, you are correct that most comments are off the tops of people’s heads and often coming from ideology rather than objective research. I know that many people in the US talk past or over each other rather than to each other, but at least some of us are trying to have reasoned debate and conversation.

      Liked by 1 person

Any thoughts? Please share.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: