Something's wrong with how I think of this:
methoxyl has the partial negative charge on oxygen which means it's activating. However, halogens are more electronegative yet they're considered deactivating. Why?
On my lecture notes, I have one section that says "if Q is an electron withdrawing group then attack on the ring is slowed because this leads to additional positive charge on the ring".
While another section says "all meta directing groups have either a partial or full positive charge on the atom directly attached to the aromatic ring."