I’ve been doing some thinking. Why do people do this “blogging” thing? What is this? I can answer for myself, and that I do it as a form of catharsis, my way of processing things that I am thinking and experiencing. If I make a connection with someone else out there, that is an added benefit, but it is mostly for my own selfish benefits. I suspect that this is the same for many of the bloggers (they need a better word for that) that I follow. It has become a method of sharing thoughts and feelings with other like-minded individuals.
That being said, there are also the bloggers out there who make a living doing this! I have a hard time even beginning to comprehend that. I don’t know if I would even want to do that, if I had the talent for it. But how does that affect what they are writing? Good writers I guess, would not bend or sway to make a buck, or would they? I recently read a blog about how to successfully network at conferences to grow your “brand” which increases your readership, and in turn your profits. Really? This isn’t why I do this. Nor would I really consider myself a blogger.
But then there are professional bloggers, and by that I mean bloggers who consider writing their blog a full-time job. They make a living sharing their personal experiences online. So what happens when people take you to task of that. For me, I recognize that my airing of thoughts and feelings over the internet is read by only a few people, and that the people who do read my writing understand that it is personal expression. Does blogging for fun and profit change the public’s expectations, and in turn give them the right to criticize people’s feelings and choices.
I have been thinking about this as one of the blogs that I follow is Her Bad Mother, who has posted this post. I encourage you read it, at least so that the rest of my rant makes a bit of sense. Catherine Connors is a woman whose job is blogging. Apparently this holds her to some higher standard that the rest of us. When I read Catherine’s blog, I read honesty. She shares how she is really feeling, and it may not be the same way I or another reader would react, but it is real and the truth. I as an unpaid blogger can get away with admitting that I don’t like my children, putting my son in a recycling bin, and questioned my own skills as a wife and mother, with nothing ever said.
It also makes me think about people. I struggle understanding the lack of empathy that seems rampant in our world today. I may be empathetic to a fault! But there has to be a line. Why on earth would someone say mean things to another human being? Why would you intentionally try to hurt someone? What argument could you possible make that would be strengthened by that sort of behaviour. I have written before about considering the weight that our words have. Today I am thinking about it again.
Think of others just a little more tomorrow, ask if it is really worth it. Take a breath. Take a risk, understand someone you didn’t before.