August 20, 2011 at 7:00 pm in INFORUM
It amazes me how quick some people assume and judge. Continue Reading
Tags: columns, Michelle Turnberg, Opinion 104 Comments »
There’s another reason for “hiding” behind a username. Some people on here scare me… and that’s the truth.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 127 29
I suppose Ms. Turnberg doesn’t read books by authors who used a pen name either. I guess I can’t picture her reading anything from Mark Twain or George Eliot. Like the rest at the Forum, she’s more into George Orwell and Dr. Suess.
Ms. Turnberg, earn your keep.
Hot debate. What do you think? 102 103
“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.” – Mark Twain
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 44 5
Dr. Suess….you mean you think she’s a good mom that likes (or liked? I don’t know how old her children are) reading to her children? What a nice comment for you to make David! At least that’s the type of comment I hope you meant to write…
Hot debate. What do you think? 27 31
A column on comments? Seriously? Do you have nothing real to write about? Perhaps you should start using an alias so that people can overlook your unpleasant history rather than being instantly turned off.
(I am signing my comment as requested.)
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 121 60
Her “opinion pieces” are as fake as her North Dakota accent. She’s clearly a graduate of the John Wheeler school of journalism: talk real loud about yourself, and no one will notice you have nothing to say.
I cancelled my Forum subscription about four months ago, but I’m thinking about resubscribing just so I can cancel again. Also, I have a new dog.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 122 54
“My favorite thing about the Internet is that you get to go into the private world of real creeps without having to smell them.”
Penn Jillette, as quoted in “Thoughts On the Business of Life” in Forbes magazine (12 November 2007)
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 102 16
Got it, only positive comments for Michelle. If I don’t agree with her, her (newsworthy) column, or this newspapers definition of the news, then I don’t deserve to have a voice.
Structuring your first column around the negative comments the last story about you received (and let’s not kid ourselves, that is what you were referring to) may have cost you a very important opportunity to show the area that there is more to you than what we have read about or watched on the news.
If you don’t like the negative comments that pop up during the stories about you, your jobs, or your legal woes…then ignore them or address them.
Address those issues and you will receive positive comments…fail to address those issues and you will become just another opinion, lost in the cache…
Very Truly Yours,
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 225 74
Very well stated, Oswald. Thanks, I enjoyed reading what you had to say.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 135 42
After a promising introduction last week, I looked forward to seeing where Turnberg would start her journey with the Forum. This article disappointed me greatly. Rather than starting on a strong note, Turnberg focused on the criticism her first article attracted.
When someone publishes their work, it is to be expected that the public will have some type of reaction; good, bad, or ugly, people will have an opinion. If Turnberg does not wish to see those opinions, I would think she could ask the Forum to not allow comments on areavoices, or she could just NOT READ the comments.
As Turnberg stated that she wouldn’t read comments unless real names were used, she probably will not read this, but I wanted to put this out there. Chastising her readers (including those who said nothing in response to the first article) was in bad form.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 197 40
The problem as I see it is two fold: 1) civility in public discourse has declined and 2) many are willing to post comments anonymously that they would not say if meeting the person face to face.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 105 15
One would have to be crazy to add comments without using a nom du plume. Already had a really bad experience on another blog. There are people who are not emotionally healthy that take things too far. Prudent people keep that in mind. These days, one cannot disagree with certain political views without being treated as an enemy. We have forgotten that it is far better to discuss differences and that we may find areas of agreement.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 108 16
This was most whiny, disappointing column I’ve ever read.
(The moderators at area voices can tell you who I am. Please don’t throw tomatoes at my house)
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 169 39
Mac, I agree with you about the acticle. Last time I checked, none of us that make up a name here and debate are getting paid.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 102 18
You’re not getting paid???
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 66 18
I know what you mean. Only certain view points seem to be allowed by the area voice mods. Rarely do I ever actually flame someone, yet seldom does a post of mine go through while posts much more attacking are allowed with not even a blink of the eye. No profanity either in my posts. What gives area voices mods? Are you all that biased on viewpoints differing from yours?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 20 2
Michele’s article this week is criticizing her readers for criticizing her last article, Hmmm. The only purpose of this column I can see, is that is it a big Pity Party for Poor Michelle. There are many people who have more difficult lives than Michelle. She needs to be less negative and more positive towards life. For starters, there is a new crop of freshmen in college this weekend. Michelle can address alcohol abuse in her column and how it affects a person’s outlook on life. Go for it Michelle! Own up to your mistakes! Criticism can be a positive thing.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 171 28
when you put yourself out there get ready for some truth,good,bad, and even some ugly.cheers!!!
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 118 5
Personally, I think this is a great way to start out on a strong note. Michelle is not saying that those that disagree with her don’t deserve a voice as one reader suggests, but rather is simply asking each of us to own up to any negativity. We all “people watch” but by doing so, we also form an opinion (right or wrong) about each person. By looking at the discrepancies of others and forming an opinion about them based only what you saw in a 10 second or less snapshot of their life does not tell us much about that person but instead tells us very much about ourselves. “Let us be slow to judge and quick to forgive, show patience, empathy and love.” Words that all of us could use practice with, but remember, “practice makes perfect”
Hot debate. What do you think? 99 104
I would click a thumbs up for that ji tovi, but I can’t hear you without knowing your real name.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 87 17
This is all just typical Forum nonsense. They stopped journalism a long time ago, if you haven’t noticed. They are playing us like accordions! They want us to get upset, because they surely know that their words are hardly worth the paper it’s printed on. If there was another place that listed the week’s auction sales, I’d never touch the forum again.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 72 7
My response (and others, it seems) was not a criticism of Turnberg personally; it was a criticism of her response to her readers opinions. What participating in areavoices allows readers to do is RESPOND to what is written. While your quote, ‘“Let us be slow to judge and quick to forgive, show patience, empathy and love”‘ is pretty, I do not think it applies here.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 34 8
Granny Mac used to say “If you can’t say anything nice about someone . . . come sit by me.”
I love Granny Mac.
Oops, off topic. Actually, I like the fact I don’t require readers to submit an authentic e-mail address when commenting on my blog. I want to know what people really think, and I believe I get more honest (albeit uncomfortable) feedback when readers can comment with no strings attached.
Sometimes people say really mean stuff. I have a cocktail and get over it.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 87 15
Maria is my real name, and this column was a total waste of my time.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 146 20
There are a lot of layers to this discussion.
Rumour mongering and personal attacks – both of which can do actual harm to the lives of those who are the targets – should be stopped. How that’s done is specific to the situation in which it occurs. IMO, it should not be part of a newspaper – any part of a newspaper.
Other kinds of negativity – as the end of the article exemplifies – may have explanations we can’t readily see. But we’ve all been there.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 45 7
There are good reasons for not wanting to sign one’s real name to an opinion piece; such as being a small business person. Many people will not do business with someone who disagrees with their point of view.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 99 15
Your “real life” identity can be exposed to a blog author by the forum’s areavoices site through IP or email addresses if you make even one post on a blog. There are also sick individuals who regularly write/blog on this site that would use that knowledge to attempt to get people fired for having opinions that are opposite their own. Due to these sorts of “word police”, some of us do need to keep our identities under cover.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 58 10
I notice that the usual suspects are leaving my remark alone like a hot potato! lol, B!
Like or Dislike: 2 0
Anonymity is useful for those who feel powerless . How else could I criticize a place like Sanford, when I feel forced to use their services? Do you think I want them to know who I am when I walk in the door? It’s useful to tell them what Joe Q Public is thinking without exposing oneself to unpleasantness. Anonymity serves a legitimate purpose.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 86 20
WOW – just what we need another judgemental self annointed celebrity (in their own mind just because they are out in the public) who feels the need to preach. I used to like Michelle but her attitude and holier than thou attitude in this column has turned me off. I didn’t read her column last week and am glad I didn’t because now I have yet another article in the FORUM to skip over and not read.
I find people who judge others just as reprehensible as Michelle finds those who don’t own up to their own actions (by the way did she address her recent drinking and driving arrest in her article??? – don’t know for sure since her column is a week old and I’m not going to pay $2.95 to read what is obviously whoa is me pity me article!!)
The FORUM has yet filled its newspaper with someone who thinks their opinions are the only ones that matter.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 112 24
Well since I’m using an alias I doubt that she will read this opinion. However this discussion happened on another forum that I used to frequent.. Whether to use real names or not.. One of the high ranking moderators was even so forward as to put his real name at the end of his post..
Shakespeare once wrote What is in a name. Well with one service out there that pulls information from a multitude of resources with a first and last name, state of residence you can pull up just basic things about people. Most of it will have their address, land line telephone if they have one, and a lot of other information depending on how much of your information is out on the internet. It scared the blank out of me.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 39 7
This was such a column. It was really written, and in response, people made comments. Keep up the work!
Hot debate. What do you think? 45 40
I hope people don’t think I was being supportive of Ms. Turnberg’s column. Perhaps my mockery was too subtle.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 26 2
I didn’t read the column last week, so I I went to check it out. I have to BUY it to read it? Really? I guess I’ll skip it.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 78 7
I’ll sum it up for you:
“Hi. I’m going to write a column about me”
As someone who had 2 or 3 comments deleted from last week’s article for saying that ‘I didn’t care for Michelle as an anchor’ *gasp* I find this line from her article today a bit insincere: “I welcome feedback and suggestions. If you have ideas for this column or wish to offer a comment, good or bad”.
Here’s a suggestion: So far in two weeks we’ve received zero content from a much-hyped column. Week 1 was, as I stated above, simply said that she’s back and going to write a column. Week 2 consisted of whining and a copy of a forwarded e-mail we’ve all gotten from an annoying aunt. How about some content? If not, then move the column to Life where I know it’s just fluff.
And for the record, I contacted Mr. Von Pinnon expressing my concern about the credibility and integrity of this forum if even the most benign critical comments are deleted while the positive ones remain, especially considering most of the comments were clearly not violating the Community Guidelines (link below). The response I got was very helpful: “It’s not a perfect system, but it’s the system we have.”
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 106 12
It’s easy to pass judgement on someone using a pseudonym, as Michelle here is clearly doing. Perhaps she needs some words of wisdom herself.
Lord, help us remember that the woman using a pseudonym has a protective order out against an ex-husband who hurt her and her children in the past, and is terrified of using her real name in public, lest he track her down again.
Help us remember that the young man using a pseudonym in online conversations is gay, and has already been beaten up on account of it, but would like to be able to continue using his voice (anonymously) to represent the gay community.
Help us remember that the elderly black man posting online grew up in a time when his thoughts and opinions were dismissed out of hand as unimportant. He knows that even today he has a better chance of being heard and respected if can hide his identity.
Part of the beauty of the internet, and anonymity, is that it allows people to engage in a discussion without privilege. Women, minorities, people with unpopular opinions, ALL can engage in discourse without fear of reprisal or having their opinions dismissed out of hand. It’s a shame that Michelle, as a supposed journalist, cannot see the value of that freedom.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 104 12
2 columns in a row from just another pretty face. So far we have, “Look at me!” for the first column, and “Listen to me!” from the second column. “Me, Me, Me!”
Ms. Turnberg wants us to believe what she says matters. The news station rejected her, the Forum picked her up and now she *wants* us to believe that she has something worth saying. I haven’t seen it yet.
The video ads of her walking with her children are oh-so-endearing. Gag me with a fork. Why does the Forum, or anyone for that matter WANT to “give her voice back”? Does the general public really care about the personal life of some divorced “poor single mother” who was fired from her job and subsequently made poor choices, including getting a DUI? Those women are a dime a dozen, and IMO don’t deserve an inch of space in the paper.
There are untold legions of women out there doing impressive things every day. Very many of them are “poor single mothers” that have NOT made destructive decisions and are working their hind ends off trying to make something of themselves and their children. They didn’t get handed an opportunity on a silver platter from a very large regional newspaper. They also aren’t p*ssing that opportunity away with “me, me, me”.
If you are reading this, Michelle, I have a suggestion for you. Stop focusing on YOU. Go out there and be a *gasp* actual journalist, and have some integrity in the pieces that you write. Whatever amount of credibility you had prior to your first column is going down the tubes.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 132 16
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“Does the general public really care about the personal life of some divorced “poor single mother” who was fired from her job and subsequently made poor choices, including getting a DUI?”
Wow, you really have her completely figured-out. As far as her getting a DUI, it’s great to know you’ve never made any mistakes in your life…
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 12 29
Well there is a mistake and then there is driving a 2 ton vehicle capable of a lot of damage, while drunk.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 18 2
I see copy-paste still works in 2011.
I googled Michelle Turnberg and all I could find was this:
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 58 15
So far there has been zero substance in her column. First column was “here I am pay attention to me!” The second column was “you guys are mean!”
There is a big difference from being an anchor where you need to look good and enunciate clearly to writing a column with thought and substance. As an anchor you could get by with saying “we’re going live to our reporter in the field at the site of the lutefisk truck rollover”, with the proper furrowing of your brow and get a “Good Job tonight! “
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 88 9
I have always thought the comments would be much different having real names and a faces attached to your area voices account. Having those two identifiers would probably create more respectable and honest site right? Not necessarily consider posting your position on Marijuana Legalization, just may lead to your doors being knocked down by the local PD or your employer harassing you. Another thought there are some coo-koo-birds out there who may end up at your doorstep with a gun. So for know I will remain Howi.
This was a great piece. I look forward to reading more from Turnberg.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 26 59
After reading all of the replies thus far, it appears the article has merit.
It has generated discussion that outlines concerns of retaliation.
Anonymity is also a tremendous aid to the resentful, the scandalous and the cowardly.
It gives the disenfranchised an alleged voice that might otherwise stay silent…whether that is good or bad is based upon the content of the post or reply.
What I can say from the perspective of validity, one would be hard pressed to believe news that was cited from an anonymous source.
Blogs, chat forums and “areavoices” are a community not unlike a small town bar, barber shop or hair salon where fact and fiction intertwine with unique distinction…and in some cases alternate realities.
On a personal note, I’ve made a choice to use my real name…or did I?
My real name could be Steve, Sparky or Seymour Butz…
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 33 58
Interesting comments. Perhaps (probably) there is some truth to the idea that Michelle is commenting on the criticism of her previous spot in the Forum, but I think that the truth of the matter is, that the internet has created a sense of pseudo-bravery to go along with pseudonyms when it comes to making a mockery of others. People are comfortable sitting behind their keyboards to critique others, sometimes in a manner that is incredibly nasty, while maintaining an anonymous standing. There isn’t any problem with having counter beliefs, but it is kind of a sad and, in my opinion, cowardly state when people explicitly tear down others without empathy for their situation. How can you know what it is like to be a single parent when you aren’t? How can you know what it is like to be a minority when you’ve never been? How can you know what it is like to have to hold down three jobs when you have one that pays for your needs and many wants? How can you know what it is like to not be able to get a job because of mental instabilities beyond your control if you are not there? I think that is the point here.
It’s easy to throw rocks from a hidden position, knowing no one can throw back. It is much more constructive to disagree in the open where mutual discourse can create understanding, even when agreement is not possible.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 74 29
There is a fine line between healthy debate and cyberbullying.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 55 23
I could not said it better myself, Scott. I totally agree. Good work!
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 42 15
Reader comments, anonymous or otherwise, at times provide additional information, raise questions that need answers, let me know how the communitiy feels about an issue or topic, and generally keep the staff of this newspaper on it’s toes. Large numbers of comments and the number of comments blocked usually indicate that the community feels strongly about an issue. So far I see 33 comments, with very few favorable towards the author. From this I can conclude that Michelle Turnberg’s career may be very short,
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 66 12
Frank, interesting thoughts.
However, it appears that many of the negative comments are “character attacks” towards Michelle …and very little about the facts of taking responsibility for what one writes.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 28 57
Marcus, I actually see responsibility for what one writes being assigned to Ms Turnberg, whether she likes it or not.
I am so disappointed that a woman who ‘had it all’ and stumbled very publicly, used her second column to whine that people said mean stuff.
Here’s a couple ideas for you, Michelle:
I had a great job, and it fell apart, probably through no fault of my own. Here’s how I put it together.
I married my dream man, and suddenly I had to provide the life for my kids they deserved.
After getting fired, I made a mistake on a huge public stage. Here’s how I spoke to my kids.
My kids got crap at school when I got arrested. Here’s how I helped them through it.
I still have the house my husband and I lived in, here’s how I keep a great home in spite of now being single.
My budget is way less since my divorce. Here’s how I keep life fun.
I love my former in-laws or I hate my former in-laws. Here’s how I keep those grandparents in my kids lives.
Good grief, I came up with this while coming in the house to refresh my beverage before returning to the back yard. Invest a little time and thought, and maybe get a few columns in the hopper.
Hey Forum, wanna hire Mac? I’ve got alot to say.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 98 16
I doubt there would be little protest from Michelle as to being accountable for what she’s written and presented in association with her name.
However, responsibility isn’t assigned in the manner you’ve suggested.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 12 32
Michelle has a paid forum to say some good stuff and make a difference for people. I blindly assumed that would be to better the world for single moms since she used her kids in the add. (nice touch, mom)
She chose to whine that people were mean.
She’s getting the accountability she deserves. Hope her next gig is better.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 47 14
She’s not getting “responsibility” as you put it.
She’s receiving feedback and retaliation for touching a nerve in the very people that guilty of the subject matter and are in protest of her article.
Whether or not she is paid for her column is of no consequence in this discussion. It’s a “JOB”…, she applied, interviewed and was hired. Her job performance is up to her superiors…not a narcissistic peanut gallery bent on personal attacks.
What it seems many are missing in the bigger picture is that regardless of WHO wrote the words in the article…a pervasive hostile anonymous environment does exist online.
This isn’t just about “areavoices”…, it reflects a lack of integrity online PERIOD.
However, the unfiltered HATE that people choose to spew…should come with the same accountability and disdain as is being imposed against Michelle.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 22 37
I’m pleased to hear that Ms Turnberg would not protest to being held accountable to her public statements.
It would appear the public is disappointed with her choice to whine about how mean everyone is.
In my opinion, this suggests the public expected something better than the pity party in which she expected us to partake.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 45 13
Whoa there Mac…,
Based on Michelle’s article content, she associated her name with what she wrote. So it would seem that she has personally taken responsibility for her words.
As for the “public” disappointment, I sincerely disagree.
The rather small cross section of people actually typing their poison against Michelle does not invalidate the article content.
I sincerely doubt that any “one” of these “public” dissenters would accept their life under anonymous scrutiny.
Personally, I’ve not read one word of coherent discussion about the subject matter…, just attacks against the authors character.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 16 35
Thanks for plagiarizing the email that I sent you in your most recent column without so much as a credit. Seriously, what is up with the Forum plagiarizing everything these days? Are you really just going to be another Bob Lind?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 74 17
Why does this remind me of “Seinfeld?”
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 43 17
Let me look into the future. In the future I see no M.T. column, but wait the visions are cloudy. I see jane ahlin’s column gone. could it be true? Could there be a merciful spirit of column worthiness? Now I see it. Janes column has been discarded to the ashheap of history where it always belonged and is replaced by M.T.’s column. but now I see it being replaced by Ross Nelson. There is a spirit of real columnism out there.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 8 29
There is a lot to be said for being able to post without using your own name.
Until early this year, there was at least one nut who went to extremes to find out personal information about any poster who disagreed with him.
Somehow, he was able to find out real names, IP addresses, telephone numbers, etc. He even went as far as to start a blog attacking others, just so he could get email addresses.
Nope, I’ll stick with bac.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 54 8
Back for another soda. Here’s a few more column ideas:
I want to remain friends with a couple we were friends with before we divorced. Here’s how I made it happen.
Here’s what I said to people at church after . . . .
My kids are cynical about relationships. Here’s what I’m telling them.
Here’s how my kids deal with a public parent.
Here’s how I deal with the familiarity that comes with being a public person and everything thinking they really know me.
Dating is so difficult because guys are intimidated by the attention we receive when we’re out for dinner.
Here’s what I tell my kids when I’m seeing someone special that is not their dad.
How my parents are dealing with the shattered dream of their little sweetie getting divorced.
My husband insisted on taking the dog. Here’s how my kids coped.
Okay, I’m going back outside. Michelle, I’m going to need a very generous tip for all these ideas.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 79 19
Hey Forum, I just gave you six months worth of Sunday column ideas. How ’bout paying me 50K and I’ll write a coumn by “Michael Turnblad”?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 60 22
Cyberbullying and other assorted nasties on the internet is very confusing to me. I don’t understand how someone can take something so personally when it’s coming from a complete stranger that they will most likely never even meet. Do people really care about some anonymous disembodied creeper’s opinions? You can only be bullied if you let it happen. It’s all a frame of mind. The people who feel cyberbullied are not made victims by someone else. They were born a victim and/or developed it early in life.
Grow some cajones and develop some thick skin. Words can only hurt you if you let them. Wearing your heart on your sleeve only creates trouble for you and paints a huge bullseye on your forehead, making you a primary trolling target.
I myself love trolling. I love to get under people’s skin because it angries up their blood, making them think rather than merely going through life unaware. Most of what I say is somewhat outrageous and written to disturb whomever I can because I drink people’s tears of despair like a nice martini.
I know, I’m sick, but we all have our crosses to bear. As long as there are people out there who enjoy being whipping posts for others, take advantage of it while you can so you don’t take out that nastiness on your immediate family. Better to flagellate a stranger than someone you care for.
I think some of the whipping posts might have some sado-masochism thing going too sometimes. There’s so very many explanations and reasons for the way things happen that you just can’t narrow things down greatly most of the time. In short, people are just plain messed up but wherever there’s a willing victim, I’ll be there to feed off of it. That’s not a promise or a threat, that’s a guarantee, and this broad, Turnberg, is just screaming for a whipping.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 19 49
Lets get one thing straight, reading NEWS COPY from a PROMPTER for 15 years makes you a NEW ANCHOR and a BROADCASTER…not a JOURNALIST. Journalists WRITE informative, thought provoking STORIES for a living. News anchors are hardly ‘journalists’. I think this column (and the charade/pub stunt of hiring her) confirms it.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 106 14
It would be civil if commentor’s could accept the piece in the manner in which it is
intended. There is no place for vitriolic abuse via these phone cables. None.
If you desire more pithy articles, try the L.A. Times, N.Y. Times or the Washington Post. The Forum is what it is – a good regional paper, like it or not.
If you haven’t paid your dues or can’t stand the heat, stick with your anonymous
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 25 52
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