What do you do when people completely misunderstand what you’re saying? I think this problem is a little more common on the internet where we don’t have facial expressions and tone of voice to help. I once put a comment on a blog. The next time I went to that blog, it was a week or so later, the person who responded to my comment congratulated me on my book deal.
I mean, I’d love to be congratulated on a book deal. I just think I should have one first. I went back and read my comment and it was still the same thing I had typed. I could almost, sorta, kinda, see where she had come up with the idea that I had a book deal.
My next question was what do I do? She was a guest poster on a blog that has a ton of contributers so it wasn’t as if I was likely to run into her again. But what if this was one of those things that came back to bite me at a really awkward time? Of course it had been more than a week since the comment, maybe trying to fix it would bring more attention to it and make it worse, but I hated feeling like I was living a lie. In the end I left it. I think trying to fix it would have made more problems, or been completely pointless as so much time had passed.
Sometimes I critique something and the person will come back with a comment and I realize they didn’t understand what I was trying to point out. I usually try to clarify at that point, as I think Critiques are valuable and important enough to get right.
Have you ever had someone completely misunderstand your words? And not in a snarky “I’m going to take everything the wrong way” way, I mean just not understood the nuances of your comment. What do you do about it? Especially on the internet where a single conversation can take days if not weeks.