Aug 28, 2006

On Blogs and Blogging and Being Oneself

I was just reading a friend's blog and she put a disclaimer before her most recent post saying, basically, it's my blog not yours and I'll post what I like.

I've read this a lot throughout the blogging world and what amazes me is that people feel forced to say it. Well, no, that isn't really accurate... what amazes is NOT that people feel forced to say it but at the number of people who launch tirades about what people have written in their blogs. You'd think some of these blog entries were Helen of Troy's face for the number of fiery missives they engender.

Once upon a time (no, not even as far back as ancient Greece and Rome), my mother's inviolable rule reigned: If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. Personally, I would extend this to "If you can't say something, or constructive, don't say anything at all."

Now, I will admit that, in some situations, keeping my trap closed can be difficult. I am really quite a warlike person when my own or the downtrodden are involved. Not in the blog world though. If I think the person is an idiot, I turn my attention elsewhere. Why waste time responding to bilge?

Some say, and they are partially correct, that blogging is a public forum, akin to standing on a soapbox at the corner of Park and Main shouting one's opinions to the world. Yes, blogging is semi-public (take that soapbox and multiply thousandfold - public but not); yes, people are putting their thoughts out to the world. It's not a soapbox, at least most aren't. Most blogs are simply an attempt to keep in touch with the world. To reach out to someone, somewhere; to connect. To divine the greater meaning in one's words and actions by allowing them to flow onto the virtual page.

The reactive vitriol being spewed is the virtual equivalent of throwing someone's drink in their face at a cocktail party.

It ruins the good time had by all and is a waste of good vodka.

Put that energy into bettering the world, people.

6 Comments:

Blogger LauraJ said...

Blogging for me is my way to matter in the world. So far it's working.

8:51 AM  
Blogger Jade said...

I think it depends on the blog. Andy's blog invites debate, as one could probably tell by his chosen title the Last Debate. Mine was originally created to keep up with out of town friends because I'm too lazy to e-mail them individually... every so often I might write something opinionated, but mostly it's just an outlet.

So the reactive vitriol can be one of two things... someone attempting to engage in debate because that's what they think the blog is supposed to be about (whether it is or not) or an internet troll who simply enjoys creating discourse. If it's the former, one would presume they might figure out whether the forum they are approaching is there for debate. If it's the latter... *shrug* fuck 'em - they need to get a life.

2:00 PM  
Blogger JerseyTjej said...

I agree with lauraj and jade...It is MY way to matter and share what I am thinking, feeling or wanting...It is kinda like a diary, sometimes written in angst or haste and sometimes it is like a job that I feel like I HAVE to do...Am I disapointing myself by not *waving* to my cyber friends several times a week? Yesterday, I felt like I was so defeated but I asked myself, (self) Why do you feel the need to write about it for the world to read? Because (I replied) it feels good to be validated...I feel like I matter and sometimes that is all I want...But on a deeper note...I am in complete agreement with "*shrug* fuck 'em - they need to get a life., LOL!! That was too good to let get by!

3:41 AM  
Blogger peppypilotgirl said...

You guys all raised some good points that I missed... Which is only odd because the two main ones are main ones why I, personally, blog!!

I blog because it does feel good to be validated, because often my efriends can see what I am missing and gently point out the void in my thinking process, because(on rare occasions) I think I might have something to say that might matter to someone else.

And, as Jade said... *shrug* fuck 'em, they need to get a life. (JT, you're absolutely right - it's too good to pass up!)

9:35 AM  
Blogger graymama said...

If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. Personally, I would extend this to "If you can't say something, or constructive, don't say anything at all."

Your mom and I are on the same page. I like your updated version a lot. Buddy is already hearing the original when he shouts NO! at people who are smiling at him.

It is amazing how quickly people can respond in a defensive manner to what people choose to write on their blogs.

7:03 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

I wanna add to Thumper's advice: If you can't say something nice, or constructive, don't say anything at all because then you become part of the problem. If you aren't part of the answer then you are part of the problem.

I started writing a whole bunch more here but decided to copy and paste it into my own blog. If you care to read it, you won't find the link on Peppy's link list so here: http://csuzyq.blogspot.com/

12:14 PM  

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