Unless you’ve been in an underground bunker for the past week you won’t have missed the drama has followed Oliver after his Badminton Cross country rounds. Now I’ve pondered on whether or not to jump on the blog post bandwagon about this. Especially as I’m no cross-country rider!

However further dramas and information has made me feel the need to put imaginary pen to paper. Previously I’ve written about the fakery of social media and how much that can make us feel like we aren’t quite matching up to other people’s expectations. Social media has its ugly side and boy has this reared its head on more than one occasion this week. Ugly would be an understatement.

Adrenaline takes over

First of all, I was horrified to watch Oliver’s cross-country rounds. They were ugly, his horse was tired, and he over used his whip. I don’t think any of this can be disputed. However, he was in the running to win the grand slam and adrenaline clearly took over I don’t believe he set out to harm his horses. How many of us have got caught up in a drama or a moment and acted out of character? Think about road rage, honestly, I am amazed at the ‘behind the wheel’ effect. We all do things we regret. I hope that Oli regret’s what he did and learns from the mistake.

His actions though do not excuse the abuse he has suffered at the hands of keyboard warriors. Reportedly he has even been subjected to death threats. A fellow tog has written an excellent piece about how damaging this whole furore could be to the sport. Have a read over at https://www.facebook.com/e.venting.co.uk/

How does anyone think that a keyboard gives them a right to say that to anyone? Another less documented SMD (social media drama) that I was witness too was like something out of Mean Girls. A lady being ridiculed and mocked for wearing an item of clothing that a ‘influencer’ had been seen wearing. I mean what the heck? Surely this something called ‘Fashion’. Someone normally a celeb wears something and then everyone else catches on. There’s nothing wrong with that-it’s life.

Social Media: Mean Girls Part 4550

Sometimes I feel like adulthood is like still being at school, in the playground. Except this time the children are far meaner and have the ability to hide behind a keyboard. Another high-profile rider lost one of his horses and the keyboard warriors were at it again. Insinuating that the horse had died due to being unfit. Of course, they did it in a roundabout way. Along the lines of ‘events of today has got me thinking about if I would compete my horse if I didn’t think it was fit’

If that isn’t asking for a bit of keyboard bashing I don’t know what is. People do this under the guise of a healthy ‘debate’ where in actual fact they just want to voice their opinion and be mean to someone. Normally because they are jealous, then when they get called out on it or don’t get the response they wanted they retract their statement, not before a large number of people have joined in- mob culture.

Social Media: Would you say that to their face?

Think how nice the world would be if we all followed the moto that we treat others how we want to be treated. If I had made a mistake I would hope that others would give me the grace and understanding to apologise, learn from it and move on. Hopefully to become a better person. After all we aren’t all born perfect and no one is able to say they haven’t made the wrong decision at some point in their life. Just because there’s a keyboard in front of you doesn’t give you the right to start a ‘debate’ or belittle a fellow human being just to make yourself feel better, make them feel bad or get some attention.

Just stop and think before you hit that enter button. Ask yourself the following:


  • Is it helpful?
  • Could it be constructive?
  • Is it nice?
  • Would I say it to their face?

Social Media doesn’t give you the right to skip these questions.

Remember we can choose to be many things in life, so be kind. That is all. I’m off to go pony smooching!

Kent Photographer