#HatersGonnaHate: Why Acknowledging Haters Is Playing Right Into Their Hands


Listen…I’m with you. I feel you. This isn’t me on some pedastal and wagging my finger Dikembe Mutombo-style at anyone and everyone who is less than perfect as though I am perfect myself. Not even close. Think of this as more of us at the bar and me saying this as we share some drinks. A beer for you and a ginger ale on the rocks for me.

I am an aspiring professional screenwriter. I will also have reached 20 years of active Army service this July. I am married (18 years in July as well) and we have two children. Life is pretty good (not perfect, as if I should have to say that) for us now, so you know that with some of that comes the haters.

Haters either don’t want to see you succeed (whether they are successful or not), or they are no doing much with their own lives and misery loves company. They show you this behavior and you want to rub their faces in it. You want to let them know. You want them to see ALL your successes, especially after telling you that it would never happen for you. You want to make sure they see everything. Because you think it will shut them up.

This is one I struggle with as well.

Another ginger ale, please. Hold the ice. I’m driving.

This is something that we HAVE to stop doing so much.

One thing I’ve noticed is that haters will often claim not to be so, or once you do begin making progress or reach any of your goals, they will continue the hating. Look at how quickly some people want to bash those who are in successful positions. The telltale sign is that the remarks often have little to do with specific acts, but of these folks in general.

Case in point: This past New Year’s Eve, singer Mariah Carey was doing a live performance on television and her microphone stopped working. Annoyed, she stopped singing and encouraged the audience to continue, as they could hear the music from the speakers more clearly than she could.

Even not being a hardcore Mariah Carey fan, right away, I knew why she reacted in this manner. What a lot of people fail to realize is that sound is a BIG deal when doing live performances. It’s not just a matter of strolling up to the stage and making it happen. There’s coordination. As much as people want to believe it happens instantly, it just doesn’t.

Without looking it up, here is what I believe needs to happen: There are speakers that the audience hears that isn’t as clear to a performer on stage. This is why they get a separate headpiece, headset, etc., and this synchs up with the music in the speakers that the audience hears. But the performer hears the music very clearly and sings with that.

Sounds simple enough, right?

So what happens when the headpiece/set goes out, yet the audience can still hear the music through the speakers? This is what happened with her.

A lot of folks don’t realize that no matter how much an artist gets paid (since they love to resort to that), it needs to be coordinated as to whether the performance will be live or not. There are a ton of factors to affect this decision. Acoustics is a big one, but there’s a huge difference in being indoors or outdoors. Wind, background noise, etc., all play a part.

While some artists may be able to switch on the fly like that, when you attend a performance, you want that artist’s best, correct? So as good as they are, you paid to see their best, right? So why would you object to getting that? If something that contributed to an artist doing his or her best was altered, why would it be wrong for them to be annoyed by that?

My point is this. As far as Carey goes, people responded with anything and everything that had little to do with this particular incident. People were calling her “fat” (which she isn’t and I still haven’t figured out how that relates), talking about how “washed up” she is (has nothing to do with all I explained above as ALL singers do this) and everything else.

That’s called being haters. Nothing else makes sense to me.

People who otherwise don’t even listen to Mariah Carey had harsh opinions as well. That also makes no sense. I don’t berate artists that I don’t listen to. I don’t listen to them enough to have those kinds of opinions. But some were speaking as though they’ve listened to every album that has ever been put out. How can such an angry opinion be derived about someone a person hardly listens to?

This isn’t to say that people all need to agree with what I’m saying here. But when I see more comments about all that has nothing to do with this particular incident, it’s hating. Period. You don’t have to “like” her, but at least understand how things work as far as audio is concerned.

People asked why she couldn’t just begin singing from that point. She probably could, had she been able to hear the music. Remember that we in the audience don’t hear what they’re able to hear on stage, so as clear as it may have been to us, it was not to her. If she began doing that was the rhythm was off, yeah…she would have caught it over that too.

This happens SO often, as if people are stupid.

A person is NOT a hater just because they disagree with something or doesn’t throw a ton of support your way. No one is obligated to support any of us. But again, it’s not just a simple lack of support. It’s directly expressing in one way or another that either they don’t want us to succeed, or that they are so certain we will not with next to NO evidence.

As much as we want to acknowledge them, here is why it may not be the best idea to constantly do so.

Number one, they’re distractions. As great as it may feel to speak about or TO one, at the end of the day, they are still nothing more than distractions.

And they know this.

Two, it may feel good to prove them wrong, but that’s only provided they roll over once you do. Not all “haters” do this. How many times have you heard someone totally spit on someone’s success as if it was anyone’s doing BUT their own? That is came “easily” for them in some way? That is “won’t last too long” or that it’s a fluke?

The bottom line there is that they’re called “haters” for a reason. They won’t always stop just because you’ve succeeded. Succeeding will not always just shut them up. In fact, that may make them hate even more.

And once again…you’re distracted.

Checkmate, says the hater.

Often, that’s all a hater wants is to distract you. Imagine running a race. Your goal is to finish first, right? Now picture someone in the audience or running behind you who shouts this or that at you. You slow down just enough to either turn to them or to acknowledge them in some way. You’ve been distracted. No matter what you say to them or how right you may be, they wanted to distract you and it worked. Even though they are sitting on their butts and doing very little, or they’re behind you in the race, you two are just a little closer now, much to your dismay and to their pleasure.

I say again…I struggle with this at times as well. I’m completely with a lot of you. I’m not “holier than thou” about this. But it’s like the expression: Success is the best revenge. It’s clear that they often don’t want to see you succeed. It already bothers them to see you do so or even to be on your way. The potential distractions are all they hunger for.

Let them starve.

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