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Don’t Be Bullied About Your Blog Or Web Space

Posted by on May 3, 2013

Well, I’m on a two-day “mad” if you will, and it’s something that really has nothing to do with me. A couple of days ago I was alerted to the fact that one of my local blogging friends was bullied by this guy who owns a gym. In my opinion he’s been bullying her since the first day she showed up but I think she missed it.

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Anyway, the main thing he bullied her about was writing about his place in her blog. He told her if she wrote about the gym he’d ban her from coming. The reason she went in the first place was because the gym misrepresented what it did and, in my mind, the guy was worried that if she wrote about it he’d be discovered.

After awhile he went too far, she got upset, and she both wrote about it and did a video. Her name is Reneè and her post is titled The Wrong Way; I hope you visit it, read it, and offer her some support because this could have been you.

Anyway, I’m obviously writing about it here, I wrote about it in this week’s Hot Blog Tips Newsletter, and I did the video below, which I’m going to share in multiple spaces. No one has the right to bully people for what they do in their own space as long as they’re not intentionally hurting someone. You’ll see how she was bullied and insulted in her blog post so I’m not going to repeat what he said, but I’m thinking that he probably wouldn’t have dared say it to another man. Obviously homeboy has no idea what the power of social media can do; he’s going to find out real soon, as I’ve done my part. As I said, I hate bullies.

I hope you watch the video below and I hope you like it, share it, comment on it and this post, and help spread awareness about bullies trying to stop people from doing what they want to do on their blogs and in social media.


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First and foremost she looks fit to me compared to what some woman I have seen here and who are just around her age. So to hell with that Gym guy she can find another one and a bit better one.

Yes bullying should not be taken lightly. I feel her pain but then she should move on. Something, somewhere, someone is always waiting for people who like to bully too much.
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May 3rd, 2013 | 10:13 AM

Karel, she’s fantastic! She will move on but it was something that had just happened; no one moves on that fast, and I didn’t have time to get mad yet. lol

May 3rd, 2013 | 4:11 PM

Thanks for putting this out there Mitch. Renee has done a lot to help the local blogging community–we need to help support her.

Social media is stronger than any bully.

I’ll post about this too!
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May 3rd, 2013 | 10:32 AM

Good stuff Phil; I saw your post & commented there as well. I like when the community comes together to support each other like this, and that guy was way out of line. I almost thought about going out there but, well, it’s Skaneateles, and that’s what her husband is for. 🙂

May 3rd, 2013 | 4:14 PM
Pitt Goumas:

No one has the right to bully people for what they do in their own space as long as they’re not intentionally hurting someone.

Great thinking. Thanks for sharing!

May 3rd, 2013 | 10:38 AM

Thanks Pitt. I think this guy was just an abusive musclehead of some type; not in my backyard to my friends.

May 3rd, 2013 | 4:18 PM

First journalists, and now gym owners? They just don’t know how to handle the power of the blogging community.
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May 3rd, 2013 | 1:13 PM

Welcome Josie. One of these days the uninitiated will learn how messing with people who know social media can harm them, especially when they’re jerks. Notice I haven’t mentioned the name of the place but I certainly mentioned their Twitter handle while on Twitter and others have named the gym. It’s bad business mistreating people, that’s for sure.

May 3rd, 2013 | 4:31 PM

It is always essential to stay strong about what you’re writing. There is always the threat that someone will complain about what is publicized, but people should always write what they feel they must. Whether it’s getting things off of their chests, warning others about something, or praising a company or product; they should always write what motivates them.
Robert Koening recently posted…DiGiorno and California Pizza Kitchen Frozen Pizzas RecalledMy Profile

May 3rd, 2013 | 6:54 PM

That’s certainly how I see it.

May 4th, 2013 | 2:07 AM

I am glad that you are worked up about the treatment that she received and I am also very appreciative of the way she herself handled the whole issue, including the last bit. I think that she has come out of it smelling better than the owner.
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May 3rd, 2013 | 9:08 PM

Yes she has Rummuser. You know, often we think we’re alone in this world when we have to face difficult people or situations and I was happy that, along with others, we could show her and this jerk that there are some of us who will stand united for justice against bullies.

May 4th, 2013 | 2:08 AM
Michael Belk:

Mitch, this is ridiculous how some people act. The gym manager was out of place.

He should have encouraged her to write about his gym. It sounds like to me he was more afraid of her finding bad things.

He should concentrate on making things better than discouraging publicity of any kind.

I hate bullies as well and I had one comment er who tried this with me.

I did not respond the way he wanted so he left me alone.
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May 3rd, 2013 | 11:00 PM

Michael, I think the guy was probably worried about being sued for misrepresentation and copyright infringement because he was implying that his gym offered something he didn’t really do. For me, if he’d said that on day one to me I’d have left and come home and immediately wrote about it; that’s just how I think about things. Those types usually get theirs in the end.

May 4th, 2013 | 2:36 AM

I wouldn’t have let someone take me aside to tell me something. Like it did to her, that would have rung my alarm bells straight off. Bullying is never right, whatever the circumstances.

What I don’t understand though is how he knew in the first place that she had a blog?

May 4th, 2013 | 10:27 AM

She works for local media thus she introduces herself with credentials and the like, and her blog is part of that.

May 4th, 2013 | 2:36 PM

It is surprising to learn that the owner of the gym intimidated Renee! The story is interesting and I like the fact that Renee decided to publish about the gym in her blog.

A real blogger will publisher things of the interest to the readers. Yes, as long as the readers are going to learn from it.

As for the “Bully”, I agree with you Mitch that the he doesn’t know the power of publishing and that of the social media. The whole threats in the first place was uncalled for.

Conclusively, there are lots of takeaways from this post, and I am persuaded that many readers will find them valuable!

Sunday recently posted…The New Digital Age book by Eric Schmidt and Jared CohenMy Profile

May 4th, 2013 | 6:45 PM

Thanks Sunday (is that really your name?). I call out injustice when and where I see it, especially as it applies to blogging and social media. That this was also a local story made it more personal, and it was great seeing how the local community pulled together to support her as it did.

May 5th, 2013 | 1:19 AM

I read Renee’s post and watched her video Mitch and that’s a shame that she had to deal with a jerk like that. I left a comment on her channel that she was giving others hope and inspiration and I can’t think of a better reason to blog.
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May 4th, 2013 | 11:31 PM

I saw your comment there & agree with you Brian. Even if some people have niche blogs, sometimes you just have to blog about injustice when it shows up, especially if you know the person. No one deserves to be bullied, in person or on line, and for once I was able to participate in doing something about it.

May 5th, 2013 | 1:23 AM

I know many people especially women who have been bullied over time due to their stand on issues. This is something that ought to stop given that we all have the freedom to do what makes sense to us. This is a free world and so is everyone. Thanks for highlighting such societal ills.

May 6th, 2013 | 2:39 AM

Thanks Doreen; it was something that had to be said. I hate that I had a real world example but sometimes it takes that to get people’s attention.

May 7th, 2013 | 12:28 AM

Good topic Mitch,

The sad truth is bullied people like being bossed around.
They are just as strange as the bullies.

If you won’t stand up for yourself you are partially crazy.


The idea that the only way you’re gong to have an decent experience in life is that everyone will be nice to you is a fallacy.

There are people out there that enjoy standing on other people’s backs and telling them what to do and how to live.

Professional bullies find government jobs so that they can bully people with authority and a title or badge.

This is the real bullying problem.
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May 6th, 2013 | 11:11 AM

Interesting take on things Darnell. I’m thinking my friend didn’t like being bullied at all, and I’m not sure any of my friends from when I was a kid enjoyed it either. And since many kids have committed suicide from being bullied, I don’t think I can agree with your particular assessment as stated.

What I will say is that sometimes people aren’t quite sure how to deal with a bull, or how to stay away from situations where they might end up having to deal with one. I had to deal with a couple of bullies as a kid and wasn’t quite sure what to do either. I was always the small kid, and yet the one thing I refused to ever do was cry. In my day that seemed to bother bullies enough so they’d leave you alone for the most part. Then one day I cracked, in my own way, and smashed a board across the back of someone trying to bully me, multiple times in fact. And the bully went and told on me to my dad! Just goes to show sometimes… BTW, my punishment was 30 seconds of silence, but word spread and it was pretty much over from that point on.

May 7th, 2013 | 12:34 AM

Both my husband and I were bullied in high school so needless to say we are very sensitive to this issue. We have to stand up for what we believe in and refuse to let bullies instill the fear in us that they so need for their own need.

May 6th, 2013 | 9:40 PM

We certainly do Suzanne, and if I heard that any kids I knew were being bullied I’d probably have to be held back from taking the offensive. I’ve always said that I would not only protect my kid but teach my kids how to protect themselves. No one deserves to be picked on.

May 7th, 2013 | 12:38 AM

People who want to bring the truth in front of the public about some wrong information being spread, often have to face this. Your friend is another person in the ever increasing list Mitch. What made me happy was that you support her. We need unity to confront these bad guys, thanks for sharing.
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May 7th, 2013 | 1:37 AM

Greetings James,

First, I don’t usually accept “info@” email addresses; it’s in the comment policy. I’m accepting this one because it’s in support of my friend Renee and I liked the message.

My hope is that other people will step for their friends when they see bullying of any type, or even people they don’t know all that well. If bullying isn’t going to stop then it’s time to call these people out publicly.

May 7th, 2013 | 6:20 PM

Sad to say I am not surprised about this turn of events Mitch: I guess whatever social problems there are in real life will show their ugly face upon the virtual world. I am surprised a business owner would be so set against having their business talked about: especially as it may have been a positive review. But, I suppose blogs in particular lend themselves to bullying, and ofc social media, when comments and such like are open to anyone to post.

May 7th, 2013 | 9:09 AM

Well Richard, I was going to come out only against bullying but it tied in nicely to blogging because I’ve had other people say to me that they had problems but couldn’t write about them because they worried someone would find out about it; sigh… Sometimes writing about it in public is the best way to get it done. From what I understand this guy also had a Facebook page and has been deleting comments as fast as possible that are bashing him. Guy just doesn’t get it.

May 7th, 2013 | 6:22 PM

The owner of that Gym is a douche. It seems that he still remained on Stone Age where threatening still worked. Anyway, she can go to another gym where her money will be much more valuated and she will be helped with her routine. From what i saw on her blog she is great shape considering two kids and so on.
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May 7th, 2013 | 12:27 PM

She’s good people Radu and very cute indeed. This guy had to be out of his mind… then again, bullies are out of their minds.

May 7th, 2013 | 6:24 PM

It is horrible what that gym did to your friend—I hope an avalanche of negative attention turns out to be his worst nightmare.
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May 8th, 2013 | 9:06 AM

Thanks Jeff. There does seem to be something going on in some fashion.

May 8th, 2013 | 6:53 PM

Hey Mitch,

Why bully somebody? That’s the question I’ve been longing to ask. What does it give or what do the bullies get from that kind of action? It’s obviously an unethical behavior to bully someone yet bullies feel happy about it. While reading your post, I feel an utterly feeling inside me. A mix feeling of sadness and rage. To think that a guy would bully a woman? What a coward thing to do. Please do send my support to Reneè.
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May 9th, 2013 | 4:33 AM

John, I can actually understand the bully mentality. There’s something to be said about the feeling one gets when they hold some kind of superiority over others. With men, often it comes in the form of physical superiority; look at sports for your examples. And it’s not only humans that do it; species where males compete for females do the same thing.

Of course being seen as the biggest and baddest is one thing; deciding to live up to it by picking on others is another. It is a type of self loathing manifesting itself because people who do it don’t believe anyone will treat them with respect unless they do it, and of course that becomes a self realizing prophecy. That and you never know how it’ll manifest itself; will the person being bullied retaliate in some manner or take it out on themselves. Personally I’d hate to live with either on my mind.

Renee’s been a champ, and her blog and video have gotten a lot of responses, many folks coming from either this blog or the video. I’m glad to have been there to help her through this in my way.

May 10th, 2013 | 1:08 AM

How sad for your friend and how dumb can that bully be. He could have had the best form of advertising for free and instead he chose to go the wrong route.

I’ve always stood up for what I have written, even when I was threatened with a law suit if I did not remove a post about a local company. It was all true and I had the evidence to prove it. I wrote an email back with a link to corroborate my post and never heard back from them again.

You’ll probably remember a post on one of my other blogs where this moron/bigot continued to attack me. I let him go as long as he was civil about it but once he started getting nasty I just deleted his comments.

Good on you for sticking up for your mates, something that I know you will always do.
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May 9th, 2013 | 4:45 AM

Thanks Sire, and you know I’ve been consistent for years doing this type of thing. I still think the guy was doing something sneaky and illegal and that’s why he tried bullying her. But he’s been getting a lot of negative attention because of it; that’ll teach him a thing or two. I saw your comment on her blog as well; good man!

May 10th, 2013 | 1:10 AM

How could I not Mitch, she deserves all the support she can get after being treated like that.
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May 10th, 2013 | 9:38 AM

Bullying people is such a bad thing, cruel people often enjoy this, mostly the ones who are usually only a pain in the ass. She should move on and find a better one.
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May 9th, 2013 | 1:04 PM

She did Peter, and is much happier now.

May 10th, 2013 | 1:13 AM

I really aggree with my friends who said that No one has the right to bully people for what they do in their own space as long as they’re not intentionally hurting someone.

May 10th, 2013 | 3:54 AM

People who do wrong are overly confident, and can go to any extent to supress those who object or revolt. But the ones who fight for justice seem to lack sufficient confidence. I don’t understand this thing, however its good that your friend atleast has the courage to face it.

May 13th, 2013 | 7:22 AM

Alex, sometimes it’s hard to figure out when you’re not the aggressive type because that’s not quite how your mind works. But when you do figure it out, all bets are off. That’s what happened to Renee; she figured it out and the gloves were off. Proud of her for that.

May 14th, 2013 | 9:01 PM

I’m going to go and read her post Mitch but I had that someone did that to her. You’re right, no one should ever be bullied and I’m really shocked that the gym owner asked her not to write about his place. Most people are eager so that right there tells me that something isn’t right. I have a feeling after I read her post I’m going to feel even more so about them.

Thanks for coming to her defense and I’m sure she appreciates the heck out of you.

Now, I’m off to check it out.

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May 13th, 2013 | 11:35 AM

Thanks Adrienne. To know Renee is to know someone who always is thinking that people are good so I’m not overly surprised she missed it the first time around. For me, my shields would have immediately gone up and I’d have walked away and immediately written about it as soon as I got home. Our content would have been different but one would hope the same effect would have been achieved. Good thing I and some of my other friends aren’t as familiar with that area, otherwise… pictures! lol

May 14th, 2013 | 9:06 PM

I agree totally with you that no one has the right to bully any blogger on what s/he must write on their blogs. The owner should have handled it a different way. Who knows if he has approached her differently may be it would have turned out to be a free promotion for the gym owner but now he has missed that opportunity.
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May 23rd, 2013 | 1:27 PM

Welcome Chadrack. Not only that but his Facebook page got lots of negative comments and he messed up again by just trying to keep up with the deletes instead of trying to apologize for the bad behavior or explaining himself better. I still think the guy was doing something illegal. Still, we write what we want to write as long as we’re willing to deal with the consequences of our truths, perceived or not.

May 23rd, 2013 | 11:24 PM

Hi Mitch,

This is the second post I’ve read in the last few days about bullying. I really admire you for raising this issue and supporting Renee in this way.

I’m really fortunate never to have experienced bullying myself and I’ve not yet had any abusive comments online – I welcome genuine criticism, disagreement and debate, but I don’t understand why anyone would want to be aggressively rude and abusive. At the end of the day, someone with a bullying attitude isn’t going to get very far in business, because potential customers will just walk with their feet.

Thanks for standing up to bullies in this powerful and passionate post 🙂


PS Love your comment policy – I need to have something like that on my blog!
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June 6th, 2013 | 4:53 PM

Thanks Sue. Truthfully, many people don’t read the comment policy, but it allows me to get rid of stuff that doesn’t fit it and if anyone ever came back to me to ask about it I can point them to it and the link in it and move on with life. 🙂

I hate bullies, mainly because they try to take advantage of people who they believe can’t take care of themselves, which often they can’t. I believe that some people who feel they get bullied might have brought it onto themselves, as I’ve often talked about consequences of actions on this blog and another blog, but most of the time it’s just someone lacking enough self esteem to leave other people alone and sometimes it just needs to be called out. And if it’s someone I know and like being bullied… trouble’s coming!

June 9th, 2013 | 4:57 PM
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