The act of forgiveness is often about clearing resentments from the past, perceived and real. That means wiping the ledger, and offering people a second chance.
My former colleague Andrea Weckerle is organizing a fundraiser to build a Civilination Academy for Online Conflict Management. She asked me to help, given my past history, and of course I am delighted, so welcome to the second Punish Geoff Fundraiser: Civilination! I have struggled with civility since I started blogging in 2006, and began openly discussing the matter over the past two years. For the most part I have overcome my mouth, though there is always progress to be made. I don’t want to preach. So the above video tells you why I made the moves, mostly out of a desire to become a better man, but also a result of consequences. Below I explain why I am supporting […]
Image by rebekaburgess A colleague has been struggling with some negative talk on the back channel and asked me how I deal with it. When someone slights me, I use that resentment to drive me further, finish hard projects, go the extra mile, and get up when I fail. This is the famous chalkboard moment. Sports teams often use slights and trash talk to go out and hand it to the opposition. Michael Jordan admitted a similar fueling approach when he was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Jordan was criticized (justly), probably because he said he did it to prove all of his critics wrong. He also revealed several resentments toward players that were in attendance. Geoff Livingston on […]
Image by Frank Tellez Freedom allows many things, good and bad. The rationalization of justified Internet vigilantes arguably falls in both camps, depending on your perspective. We love the archetype of the vigilante, the person who goes out and meters justice when authorities fail to do so. In a romantic sense, it makes sense. Consider our pop culture heros; Batman, Iron Man, Jack Reacher (in spite of Tom Cruise), Clint Eastwood’s many tough guy characters, and on and on. We worship their ability to right wrong in the spite of flawed protection mechanisms. Thanks to the Internet, practicing vigilantism has never been easier. Social media empowers anyone to speak out for justice, and successful acts are met with attention and […]
Last week we talked about antisemitism, hate and intolerance, and this week Boston suffered a brutal terrorist attack, an act of hate. Then we witnessed the fallout online with the autotweet debates, which took some pretty uncivil turns. Today, let’s focus on beauty and positive action. Every year I make the journey down to the tidal basin to visually record the brief yet stunning presence of the cherry tree blossoms. These are some of my more popular photos when I share them, usually marking the arrival of Spring This year not one, but two of my photos are featured in Yahoo’s 2013 Cherry Blossoms Galore photo set. You can see all of my 2013 shots here. Today, you will find […]
Image by Rain So why do serial complainers lose credibility on and offline? We all know these people, the kvetch or worse, the troll, the person that always brings a storm cloud whenever they discuss an issue. Publicly everyone listens, privately they get dismissed on the back channel as a hater or worse. Eventually, people stop listening all together. The title alone is the answer, specifically, repeat complaining. In social communities the consistent malcontent becomes the equivalent of the boy who cried wolf. In fact, if the malcontent goes so far as to hurt others, they breed a form of reciprocity that no one really wants to see, vengeance. A German study from the Institute for the Study of Labor […]