Saturday, March 9, 2013

How to Win the Internets

Okay, so not the internets specifically, but more how to win someone over to your cause.  Because, in all seriousness, you're doing it rong, guys.  You attract more flies with honey, after all (though I'm not sure why anyone WANTS to attract flies? but I digress).  I'm going to use car seats as examples because that's what closest to my heart. ;)


1) Be Condescending
Example 1: I would never forward face a child that small.
Example 2: I can't imagine forward facing my child, and she's *insert age older than the other person's child*

2) Make Judgmental Assumptions
Example 1: I saw a kid in a bucket seat today.  I bet he's in it all day every day and has a flat head and is unintelligent.
Example 2: I told you rear facing is safer and you're not rear facing, so clearly you don't love your child enough.

3) Make Threats
Example 1: Someone should call CPS, because putting your 3-year-old in a booster seat is neglect.
Example 2: You won't listen to me and rear face your 11.5 months old? I could always just call the police.

4) Give Your Opinion When it is Not Asked For
Example 1: I think
Example 2: I hope

5) Skew Facts
Example 1: It's the law to rear face until 2.
Example 2: Rear facing is 500 times safer.


1) Ask questions in a manner that is respectful, polite, and judgement free.
Good: Is your child currently rear facing or forward facing?
Bad: Your child is rear facing, I hope?
Worse: PLEASE consider rear facing!!!

2) Present facts gently and with compassion.  (Yes, they are facts, and people should not be offended by facts, but please consider the facts you are presenting are essentially telling the parent that what they are doing is wrong and/or unsafe.  That's tough to swallow, even if it's a fact.)
Good: Are you aware that rear facing is 5 times safer at that age?
Bad: Your child is not safe forward facing.

3) Correct gently.
Good: Actually, so-and-so, that's incorrect. Here's the correct version.
Bad: You're wrong, because -
Worse: There are no words for how dumb you are.

4) Butt out.
Good: I see this is being handled already, so I'm going to move on with my life.
Bad: That admin is setting someone straight. This goes against the principles of anarchy, and I must intervene for the sake of the world!
Worse: Admin, you're being a jerk.

5) Keep your cool.
Good: That person just called me a mean name.  I'm going to continue to educate them gently and with compassion.
Bad: You're a jerk, too. And you're still wrong.
Worse: Twatwaffle.

You're not going to win anyone over by being cold, heartless, or judgmental. Okay?

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