As a diligent YouTube content creator, I get comments on my videos every day, from all over the world.  It’s fun to connect with new people, and I have built a reputation for always answering any comments I get on my videos.

Of course, some of those comments are less than friendly.

Several of my more ambitious performances rub some viewers the wrong way, and they let me know about it.  (At most it’s about 20% of the overall audience for my work, so I really don’t get introverted about it.)

I have noticed that if I take the time to engage with these critical type commenters, more often than not I can get them to be more civil, and have even “turned” some of them.  

Some of my most insulting commenters are now fans, just because I got in touch with them.

To illustrate, here’s a recent YouTube interchange you might enjoy.  It was provoked by my Bohemian Rhapsody in Celebrity Voices video, which has a lot of views, given the popularity of that great rock anthem by Queen.  

Many enjoyed it. This person however, did not: 

Most of these impressions sucked hard. For a professional stage setup and a band that is keeping it all together, how come a hack like this is in front of the microphone? Jesus, take the wheel.

JIM: You certainly don’t beat around the bush.

Honesty is the best policy no matter how blunt it may be. Constructive criticism is a form of learning.

JIM:  Well, I agree about honesty, of course.  How constructive your comments were, well, I think that wasn’t really the intention.  You just wanted to call me names and get me to shut up.  I’m sorry my work offended you.  I hope you don’t make a habit of introducing yourself to others by handing out insults.

I called you one name, not multiple ones. And get you to shut up? I spoke first and you chose to reply. You didn’t have to say anything, but here we are. I hope you grow some thicker skin while being in the entertainment industry. Good luck, chief.

JIM: Well, in any case, we were once strangers, now we’ve had an entire conversation.  That’s an improvement in my mind. I respect you for holding your ground.  You are entitled to your opinion of course and I respect your right to express it.  Good luck to you as well.

Thank you, James. I have respect for you saying that to me. It’s the truth. We all have opinions even though they may not be well liked at all times. Once bitter enemies in the Great War of (channel name) & Jim Meskimen, we are now two cherished friends. This brings me great joy and I feel quite proud.

How about that?  Went from “Most of these impressions sucked hard” to “We are now two cherished friends.”  

People are actually inclined to be friendly, but sometimes use the internet to vent, not realizing that there is another human being on the other end of the comment box.

It’s become a fun game for me to try and turn the naysayers.  The power of communication never fails to amaze me.

Hope you find a way to communicate with those difficult people in your life.  Or, as I sometimes also do, you can just DELETE.

Oh, and if you haven’t yet subscribed to my YouTube channel, it would mean a lot to mean if you would.