Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Ace Young Fans: Opening A Can of Worms...

One of my favorite things about this blog is hearing from all of you.

Blogs are a great way for us to communicate our opinions and I welcome all opinions—whether you agree with me or not.

And obviously, comments mean that people are reading what I have to say, and who doesn’t like that, right?

So when the comments started rolling in on my review of Ace Young’s debut CD, I was excited to see them. Until today, when I started reading them all together and I realized that my blog was becoming a part of something I didn’t want to get involved in. Regretfully, I deleted the comments—all 23 of them.

I’m not going to lie to you. That hurt…

It all started innocently enough. I got an anonymous comment that alluded to some personal issues for Ace and asked why he didn’t use more of that in his songwriting. Since I agreed that some of the lyrics of his songs were a little superficial, I didn’t think much of it. The comment didn’t say that the issues were absolutely true, so I figured it would be okay to let it slide. But if I had realized what it would start…

As I suspected, Ace’s fans responded to the comment, but not to defend him. Instead, they responded to attack the commenter, who they believed to know the identity of. According to those comments, the commenter had appeared at a fan event where Ace revealed some of the alleged issues. The comments accused “Anonymous” of putting the private conversations on the Internet to smear Ace and his family.

Then there were the comments saying that “anonymous” was not who everyone suspected and this whole thing had hurt the suspect deeply. Those were followed by comments quoting a MySpace page that “proved” the identity of “Anonymous.” There were also comments making fun of everyone for fighting with each other.

Because I believe in free speech, I posted every single comment. And I admit, I actually thought some of them were funny—especially since instead of attacking the person they should have been (me for trashing Ace’s CD), they were trashing each other. And to people who knew nothing about all this in-fighting, the arguing made them look really stupid.

And let’s face it. I got caught up in the astounding number of comments I was getting…

But then today I read a comment that made me realize that this had to come to an end. Another anonymous poster said that they hoped “Anonymous” brought the police to Ace’s CD release party to protect herself.

The police? That made me go back and read all of the comments at once. And when I realized what I had been sucked into, it made me sick. My blog was being used for Ace fans to wage war against each other.

And that’s when I decided enough was enough and deleted the comments. I can’t keep the Ace fans from fighting on the Internet. There are too many places for them to fight it out. But I can keep them from doing it on my blog.

And to the Ace fans who may be reading this—maybe even Ace himself—I apologize for adding fuel to the fire.

I hope you all will keep the comments coming, whether you agree with me or not. I love to read your thoughts.

But if you have a battle to rage with your fellow “fans,” please stay away…