There is a certain line people need to decide for themselves when it comes to blogging. It’s the personal line where we determine how much information we allow the world to know about us. We choose exactly how much knowledge we’re going to let the world be privy to.
As I’ve explored the blogging sphere, I’ve discovered some people who seem to put absolutely everything out there. Each and every aspect of their personal lives, their families’ habits, their children’s nuisances, and the faults of their spouses are made readily available for all the world to read. Sometimes, there are things these people wouldn’t tell their own mothers which seem to be shouted out behind the cloak of anonymity (or not so anonymousness) of the Internet and blogging. I can’t tell you of how many times I’ve inadvertently run across those who’ve written about having ‘procedures’ done, about certain conditions that are better left unsaid, or even use language that borders on an R-rated movie thrown out like confetti at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.
I have to ask myself in all these cases…just why is this? Why do people feel that they need to tell their lavatory stories and share sometimes personal and intimate details of their lives with a world of strangers?
Some would argue, “But I’m sharing it with my friends.” Or, “My family reads my blog.” But, unless your blog is set to private, your family is most certainly not the only group of people that might be tuning in.
You know, I remember back when I was a kid. My parents bought me a baseball cap with my name on the front. I was so thrilled. I wore this hat each and every day. One day my sister and I were sitting in the back of our pickup as our parents went into the local nursery for plants for the garden. As we both sat there, bored, a man and woman walked up to us. The man looked at me and said, “Hey, how you doing, Teachinfourth?”
I was shocked. How had this man known my name? Being all of but 6 years old I looked at him curiously and decided that I must have known him. After all, he obviously knew who I was. If he’d have told me that I needed to go with him, I probably would have – after all – he knew my name.
I smiled at him and he and his wife smiled back. I then asked, “How do you know my name?”
To this, the man pointed to my hat. “Your name’s on your cap, son.”
I still think back on that and realize the error of my parent’s ways when buying me that hat – of course, some may argue that it was a simpler time and bad things didn’t happen to people. Maybe they’d be right…or maybe it just wasn’t publicized as much either.
Now, don’t think that I’m not advocating a cease-fire from blogging – heaven forbid! I love this medium of communication far too much…my point is, too much information can be a dangerous thing. Sometimes, I think people feel that they need to out-do each other in the realms of blogging. Some of them seem to think, “Well, if I write about this, then people will want to read what I am writing because it’s personal, on the cutting edge, risqué, or whatever.”
I just don’t know…
When I began to blog a few years ago I had to decide for myself just where that line of personal information started, and where it stopped. Even back in 2007 I decided that there were certain posts that would never see the lit-up screen of another’s computer; after all, some experiences were just too personal.
There have been times where I have written a post and then thought before I hit that ‘publish’ button. Sometimes, they’ve gone into drafts and have never been seen again. Those things which I do allow to be published on a personal nature have always come after deliberation and deciding of whether or not I really want that information out there.
Well, this is about it. I have nothing else to say on the matter tonight. Perhaps I will in the morning after another read, but to be honest, I am comfortable with what I’ve said.
And with that, I’m ready to hit the ‘publish’ button…
Image source: http://www.cartoonstock.com/