Developing a blog is an interesting experience. I’ve enjoyed online life for over ten years and yet it’s only a little over a year since I decided to start blogging.
I can remember posting until the wee hours of the morning many nights for years on message boards discussing Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and when they started Angel and Firefly. Yes, I’m a Joss Whedon fan. It took those shows for me to explore the whole world of forums, message boards and the online world in general. Have made some awesome friends from the experiences. In fact it was on a dare to write something for an online friend who noticed way before me that perhaps I was a storyteller. I told her I’d last 6 sentences. Instead I was looking for an ending 16,000 words and original characters later. I was wrong and bam the beginning of my passion for writing flared brighter than a bonfire.
Yet, blogging is something I am only beginning to embrace and I’ve been trying to understand why it is one of the last aspects of the internet I’ve utilised. Driving home after visiting a friend (yes, visiting people in real life is still something people do even with the digital avalanche) I understand what it is. Interactivity. With message boards, Yahoo messenger, MSN, ICQ, Facebook, Twitter, emails, MySpace etc the level of interactivity is much higher and direct. Not surprising how social networking has taken off. It’s quick and immediate. Message boards can be busy and quiet, with notes being followed at the reader’s request.
Blogging feels personal. Private. I write a journal and have done so ever since I can remember (the fact I didn’t tie this to any side of my once-repressed writer is another matter). I find blogging a little like journaling and working out what I want to ‘put out there’ and what is going to stay private has been a new juggling act.
I’ve had these thoughts about facebook and twitter too. I watch and follow some very successful writers, actors and musicians and wonder how they feel juggling the private and the public. Once it’s out in the interwebs it’s there. Doesn’t matter if you take it down, somewhere out there your words are recorded.
Twitter is being catalogued in Library of Congress, which amuses me no end. Imagine it, a millennium from now, someone reading the archival material (assuming they retain the technology to read said material) and wondering why it was kept. As a classics student, years ago (and even today) I wish I had access to the general day-day chatter, styles and mores of an era. Cicero is wonderful to learn Latin, but really he can be very dry. Assumptions about the why behind reasons create much scholarly debate. Will that be our culture in a thousand years?