As most of you probably know, Matt Roloff has been posting on his Facebook Fan Page earlier this week, claiming that he's been contacted by "national news agencies and the FBI about cyber-bullying and how it applies to "reality people".
Although Matt has this hang up that he doesn't actually say the name "Spiritswander", I don't think it's any secret what he is referring to when he rants about "bloggers".
These are some of Matt's Facebook posts about it earlier this week:
Matt Roloff: Got contacted today from several national news agencies and the FBI re: Cyber bulling situations.. and how it applies to "reality people". Sounds like fantastic and significant investigation going on. Finally those sour pusses that hide behind ghost identity gonna get exposed. :) Gotta love that. Hope investigation only last couple years and I not a life time. :)
Matt Roloff: Cyber Bully is a crime. People says things that are NOT rooted in any facts. It's a very real problem.
Christine: "Can I ask a question Matt? Why do people think it's ok to tell lies about one another? Your family is a good inspiration to people, I want to be just like you. Why are there so many liers out there?
Matt Roloff: Christine... We're trying to figure that out as well. We think its only people that hide behind their keyboard. Nobody has come forward with their real name as yet. They're afraid of the truth I guess.
And some counter good counter points:
Micah: "What's the difference between cyber bullying and someone just being critical of something as it applies to reality people? I can understand that if people were harassing or threatening your your kids, for instance, but how is that different than saying "Boy you should clean up your messy house" or "that was not the best way to handle that situation"? I am just not sure where one can draw that line is what I am asking about when people put their personal lives out there, they invite at least some scrutiny. I am sure you also get some psychos in the mix and that I understand that. I guess I am wondering what the difference in your eyes are between a "Cyber Bully" and a "Sour Puss".
Peter: "Matt, I've seen your kids and their friends on Facebook groups that ridicule 16 year old Justin Bieber (I was a member of one of them, haha)
But the point is maybe you should talk to your kids and their friends that you like so much about not being "cyber bullies".
You are both public figures. Micah made a great point above.
Look at what happened when you mentioned Kate Gosselin on here? People were very vocal and mean spirited and blunt about bashing her and what they think of her. If you think you're a victim of cyberbullying then your own fans cyberbully another reality person way worse than anything you face.
The idea that our site is somehow "cyber-bullying" the Roloffs is too ridiculous to even rationally discuss -- but I'll try. The Roloffs are public figures, television stars, authors, participants in "celebrity" basketball games, stars of "celebrity cruises", guests on The Oprah Show, The Rachael Ray Show, Good Morning America and The Today Show. When you're a public figure, people are going to comment about you. Sometimes, those comments are going to be negative.
It appears as though, in Matt's mind, when people don't agree with him, or his opinion on events and issues -- in his mind they are lying and bullying him and his family.
We've stated our goal with this site many times, to provide fans with an up- to-date and almost daily place for people to hear what is going on with the Roloffs. We aim to be informative and fun. We post all information, promote their public events and charity activities, articles that put the Roloffs in a good light, articles that put the Roloffs in a bad light, reports and sightings from other fans -- some of those are positive, some of those are negative. We pass it along to fans and everyone can form their own opinions.
However, it was never our goal to become Matt Roloff's best friend. It was not our goal to "earn" personal phone calls or shout outs from Matt by always agreeing with him or posting content that only he approves of. Our allegiance was to fans and followers of the Roloffs and Little People, Big World to post whatever is going on with the most accurate and truthful information. Sometimes I pass along my personal opinion on the subject as well, and sometimes I disagree with the Roloffs. In reader comments, we try to allow people freedom to express their opinions - although I don't personally agree with them - this site isn't just about one person's personal opinion - so we try to allow people to express those opinions -- some readers like Amy and don't like Matt, some like Jeremy and don't like Jacob, some like Matt and don't like Zach. However, one of the lines I've always tried to not to cross because I find it to be destructive is personal comments on appearance of the Roloffs or the friends on the show (the making fun of Zach's dwarfism related features that sometimes occurs on LPBW message boards or making fun of the weight of Jeremy's ex girlfriend) -- you don't see that on our site.
I don't think it's any secret that the original reason why Matt deems our site to be evil and "hateful" is because we posted about Jeremy's language scandal and I stated that I felt Jeremy was wrong, hypocritical and it was disappointing considering the message of the show. Even more disappointing was the fact that Jeremy never -- to this day -- felt it important enough to use it as a learning moment to apologize or say that he realized he was wrong.
From that moment on we were....not on Matt's Christmas card list to state it mildly. No matter how many positive articles we have about the Roloffs or promotion we provide the Roloffs -- we went against Matt's wishes and had a different opinion on the matter than the Roloffs did. And then on many subsequent events, when Matt states something that we know or hear to not be accurate, we voice that too. Obviously Matt doesn't like to be contradicted. And that's fine. As I stated, it was never our goal to be a Matt Roloff lackey or a fluff site. That's what official sites are for. On official sites you don't expect to hear all the news about the Roloffs or the show, you're only going to hear what fits their agenda and that is perfectly understandable.
It's always been our goal to be a thorough, fair and objective site that fans can visit and feel that they are "in the loop" regarding what is happening with the Roloffs and Little People, Big World.
So back to the issue -- Matt's posts about cyber-bullying -- I have to personally say I think it's disappointing, perhaps bordering on distasteful, that Matt chose to take an issue that is in the news recently for very tragic reasons and make it about himself and his issues with our site or perhaps other LPBW message board sites.
If you don't pay attention to the news, the reason why cyber-bullying is in the news right now, is not because television celebrities are occasionally having people make comments about them that are negative or that they don't agree with.
It is because of the number of recent stories of teenagers who were gay that committed suicide. Talk show host Ellen Degeneres had a very poignant and heartfelt message about this subject.
To quote Ellen: "There are messages everywhere that validate this kind of bullying and taunting."
I find it very sadly ironic that Matt would use this issue to make the Roloffs into the victims when one of the primary reasons why Matt dislikes this site: Spiritswander: Keeping Up With the Roloffs -- so much is because we took a stand -- unlike Matt's staff and moderators that take their orders from Matt that said things like "Words can't hurt" -- and we said Jeremy was wrong to use racist and homophobic slurs, perceived mocking actions, and derogatory phrases such as "I had a great soccer game. Not to be a gay bragging f*ggot but I completely raped their defense, I scored 3 goals..."
And we said that was wrong because of the deeper message it sends and spreads. Yet now Matt is seemingly using this issue to make the Roloffs sound like victims and the Spiritswander site are the bullies? Ridiculous. And distasteful.
Lastly, we do have a positive Roloff connection and the *real* reason why this is an issue in the news to pass along. People have alerted us, that they noticed Jeremy's ex-girlfriend - Sarah (seen primarily on the first season of LPBW) supports Facebook events that are dedicated to bringing attention and awareness to the homophobic bullying the led to these teenagers taking their own lives.
Speaking Out Against Intolerance
On Oct 20, 2010, wear purple in honor of the 6 boys (I am sad to say now the count is at 8 suicides) who committed suicide recently due to abuse and bullying. This is for every kid who was or still is tormented because they are different in anyway. The boys' names were Tyler Clementi, Asher Brown, Seth Walsh, Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase, and Billy Lucas. Purple represents Spirit on the LGBTQ flag and that’s what we’d like all o...f you to have with you: spirit. Please know that it gets better and that you will meet people who will love you and respect you for who you are, no matter your sexuality. Please wear purple on Oct 20th. Tell everyone.
There is a Youtube channel called the It Gets Better project. There are videos from all kinds of people who let you know what they've gone through and to give anyone going through this sort of thing advice. If anyone is interested in checking it out, here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/user/itgetsbetterproject