On today’s episode, Jeremy talks about how he handles negative comments on the episodes of the show.
How We Handle Negative Comments – Episode 249
We receive tons of comments for the show and the majority of them are positive and sensible ones but some are not so pleasant. Today, Jeremy talks about how he deals with negative comments on the show and how it reflects the character of some martial artists. Listen to find out more!
You can read the transcript below or download here.
Hey everybody, thanks for tuning in. This is whistlekick martial arts radio episode 249. I’m your host, Jeremy Lesniak. I’m the founder here at whistlekick sparring gear and apparel, I’m your host for this show and you can probably tell I’m driving. We’ll see how well it happens on the back end, the cleaning up of all this audio, thanks for the wonderful team handles all that backend stuff it allows me to focus on other things like today as I’m driving from HQ in Vermont to Maine for an event, the finale of the Maine martial arts circuit, it’s their championship event and they’re really friendly to us. So, they said, hey come set up a table, couple tables, it’s gonna be a bunch of tables and maybe some folks can get some, some last-minute Christmas gifts. Of course, you may be listening to this in the future it may not be approaching Christmas time when you’re listening. Whenever you’re listening, wherever you are listening from I thank you, I thank you for your time and thank you for supporting whistlekick. If you want to check out the stuff that we make, you can go to whistlekick.com if you wanna check out the other episodes that we’ve done, those are at whistlekickmartialartsradio.com. Today I want to talk about the show, this show. Why we do some of the things that we do and why we give a platform two, I don’t wanna say anyone, but almost everyone. That doesn’t mean that we can accept every guest on the show, we’ve grown to the point where we have people want to come on the show which is awesome makes my life easier but not everyone gets the nod because we only release 52 interview episodes in a year. And we’ve got a hold those slots for the guests that are going to be the most compelling and interesting to you, the listeners, our audience. There’s a responsibility to all of you we bring you the best people we can.
The impetus for this episode is a comment that was left on a recent podcast episode that I deleted, that will never see the light of day because it was so horrible, so insulting to me, to whistlekick, to the guest that I wasn’t even gonna to let it out there to respond. Those of you that know me or follow what we do that’s not generally my style. I like to keep things open and public and if there’s discourse to be had I want it to be had publicly because we can all stand to benefit from that. But in this case, this person who wrote in was very much not a fan of the guest that we featured. You might be able to speculate as to who that was, over the years we’ve had a number of guests who are controversial in various ways either for the stories that they told, the opinions that they held, or just who they are and what they represent within the martial arts. We’ve had folks that others will look at and say they don’t deserve their rank or that person is flat-out a liar about the things that they’re saying happened. My job as the host of this show is not to judge. It doesn’t mean they were completely objective, it doesn’t mean that were never going to take an opinion. Certainly, a person, I’m a human being, I have opinions. But when I speak with someone on the show, my goal is not two layer my opinions on top of what they say, my goal is to bring as much information to light as I can kinda like a journalist so you can make the decision for yourself. You have your own set of opinions and ideas in your own martial arts training and books you read whatever else and how you feel, the opinions that you hold are a factor of all of those things. I am not trying to build an audience full of people who think exactly like I do. I don’t want that, in fact I have had discussion, intelligent discussion, sometimes passionate discussion on and off the air sometimes on social media with not only people who listen to the show but people who became or were guests of the show. It’s no secret that I’ve built friendships from talking to people on the show and I love that but this person stepped over the line and I will explain how they did.
The first thing was they start off by insulting me. They call me, we don’t swear on the show, a kiss butt, paraphrasing little but you know what I mean, for even giving this person the opportunity to come on the show. We’ll first off, their passing a judgment there, you can imagine the most controversial, negative figure in the martial arts, whoever that is to you. You can imagine the most offensive, insulting person in the martial arts, if they have some things that they want to say, and those things warrant hearing by enough of the audience that I think it would be interesting and people will listen, I’m going to bring them on the show. That’s just, that’s just how it’s. So right away this person pass judgment that this person, this guest didn’t deserve the airtime. Secondly, the commenter continued on to offensively critique the stories that this guest told, they’re history, their lineage, pretty much everything that they said on the show and it was really apparent that the comments this individual was making had almost nothing possibly, nothing at all to do with what the guests said on the show. It was entirely based on things that the guest had said or done or written or whatever prior. Right there to me that’s a flag. This listener wasn’t and honestly, for all I know they listened for all I know they saw the guest name and loss their mind. They just went off. They were responding not to the episode, but to the person and that’s the difference. We’re going to give people the opportunity to speak, to present who they are, their stories and sometimes those stories aren’t gonna be true. Hopefully, the majority of the time they will be, but the goal here is to get you to think and to entertain. If you listen to something and you completely disagree but if it’s made you think, that’s part of what I see is my job. I hope that the guests that we bring you are entertaining and educational whether that education comes from what the guest says or what you listened to and form your own opinions to be in contrast to the guest’s words, honestly, I don’t care which one it is. So, to the listeners out there, thank you. The majority of you are incredibly respectful and in fact on this very same episode I’m referencing, we had a ton, far more than average feedback, positive feedback. People really enjoyed this episode. They found the guest a dynamic storyteller who was exciting, and entertaining and they just loved it. And to that one person whose comment I deleted, I wrote you an email and I explained in a shorter obviously text version, everything I’m saying here. If you look around, if you look on YouTube, if you look whistlekickmartialartsradio.com at the show notes, in the comments below, you’ll see that their critical comments, I have no problem letting those stand but it has to be constructive and it has to be respectful. Actually, I’d even take back the constructive part, it has to be respectful. You can have respect for someone that you disagree with. You can have respect for someone who hasn’t been respectful to you, we talked about that on the show I think that, that’s important.
It is important that we as martial artists conduct ourselves in a way that makes the rest of the world see martial arts as something to aspire to and part of that is rising above and being respectful even when you don’t see the value in it. If you want to be on the show or even better, if you know someone that belongs on the show, someone whose story should chronicle, reach out. There’s a form at whistlekickmartialartsradio.com or you can email me directly email@example.com. One of the things I’m really proud of is that were building this archive of tremendous stories of folks who are aging, who are passing away. I don’t know that I spoke of it on, no I have mentioned it, we have had unfortunately, our first guest pass away Hanshi Jim Smith. All the way back to episode 16-18, he was deftly in the teens. A really kind man and after he passed, we had a number of students reach out and say thank you for that episode, people that had never listen to it, people that wanted to listen to it again. Because now there’s something not that there aren’t a multitude of other elements to his legacy but sort of a condensed cliff notes version of who he was towards the end of his life. I want to do that for others. So, if you know someone whose story deserves to be chronicled or if there’s a topic that deserves that same treatment, reach out. Because it’s the more important element of what we’re doing here. I love that what we do is entertaining and educational but these interviews that we do there are important at least to me and maybe not all of them but I know for some of you because I get that feedback. So, let’s flush out the list of people and these people don’t have to be people that everyone knows of. If take a look at the list most of them aren’t. They’re people that have lived their lives as martial artist, who have advanced the arts and have made the lives of those around them better because of the martial arts and through.
I thank you for listening today that’s all I’ve got to say, hope to hear from some of you so we can set up amazing interviews with the people that you hold dear. Until next time, train hard. Smile, have a great day.