Mistakes happen. It’s just part of life. This is true of those of us who blog about tea, too. So what should you do when a tea blogger gets something wrong? Well, as with many things, there’s the helpful approach and the not-so-helpful approach.

(ETS image)

(ETS image)

The Not-So-Helpful Approach

You see something wrong on a site and immediately start peppering the blog with comments. Since most blogs are set up to approve comments before they get posted (as a way to deter spam and those self-serving comments that include a link to your own blog), you will get increasingly frustrated as these comments do not appear on the site. The next step is to escalate things to social media sites, posting your correction there. It’s sort of understandable when you are so passionate about a topic, as many people are about tea. Seeing blatant misinformation getting posted such as which teas have what amount of caffeine or calling a Darjeeling tea an oolong can really get you riled, but resist the temptation to go ballistic.

The Helpful Approach

If the blogger is someone you’ve been reading awhile, been in touch with through social media, or even met in person, or if you have their email address, send them a private message about the error. Someone was nice enough to let me know privately through social media that I had the wrong “Mary” listed in a recent article. I thanked him and made the correction. No harm, no foul, and the error is fixed. On another occasion, I got an email showing that a tea I had said was Darjeeling was actually from Sri Lanka (I had gone by the vendor’s label and, being the helpful sort, passed along to that vendor the correction as well as fixing it on my own blog).

It would seem that the helpful approach is best. Of course, that’s true of a lot of things, following the old adage “You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” Of course, people don’t always listen when you try to clarify things and get the misinformation straightened out, but staying cool and posting your own article that gives the real information is a better alternative. I’ve done it several times.

See more of A.C. Cargill’s articles here.

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