Home > Feminism, Life, etcetera, Sociology > the nature of blogging

the nature of blogging

Monday, 19 February 2007 Leave a comment Go to comments

I have found myself intrigued with the question of blogging! Last night, over some desert in Andersonville, a friend of mine questioned me on “why I blog?” My friend questioned me saying, “How can you say these things to the world? I understood this question in this way:  How can I publish something so raw and perhaps questionable–like my Mitt Romney post?!  We even entered a discussion concerning how can relationships or community exist in a virtual “world…?” I think this is an interesting question, especially considering the rise in websites and blogs. So, why? Why are there blogs? Why the strengthening of virtual communities, and how do blogs foster or cultivate a sense of voice? I will answer the question from both personal experience and a critical perspective.

I have historically thought that text is a way of creating and using voice [whether written on conventional paper and now written virtually]. While blogging tends to be constrictive in the sense that a blog resides in the “virtual world,” blogs seem to embody a sort of power at encouraging conversation–certainly virtual conversation, but also real live conversation.  I have the distinct sense that when these “voices” gather [whether live or virtual], we socialize knowledge.  My friend questioned me as to whether I mean democratizing knowledge or socializing knowledge?  I thought this an important and interesting query, and I responded by suggesting that I felt that blogging is a way of socializing knowledge.  Perhaps there is a democratization of knowledge?

When I consider my own efforts at finding my own voice and furthermore constructing critical evaluations and responses, over against simply stream of consciousness writing, blogging becomes a real live and very public tool.  Situating myself in the struggle for women finding and using their voices along side the communities of people of color and queers, blogging becomes perhaps the tool that enables both the finding of one’s voice and using one’s voice in a very, very public way.  This has been my experirence in terms of voice and actively using my voice publicly.

Though answering out of the order that I listed it above, how does blogging strengthen the idea of community and why the active effort to stregthen virtual communities?  With the varrying blogging “rings” and other blog engines, the pursuit, act, and discipline of blogging creates webs of conversation [again, both live and virtual].  And so, each day that I add a link to my site, I participate in both the creation and strengthening of virtual communities–the nexus of life.

Does this capture the nature of blogging for you who is reading this?

  1. Monday, 19 February 2007 at 12:23 pm

    I think this is an important question. About 10 years ago I read a book called The De-Voicing of Society: Why We Don’t Talk to Each Other Anymore by John L Locke. I think he wrote it just when everyone was really getting into e-mail, voice-mail, fax machines, and beepers and obviously before the age of blogging. In fact his theory was true only for a short time (thank goodness!) and we once again are finding our creativivity and our voices- through blogging. It is the new Intimacy. We care about each other, we find our common interests, and learn to understand our differences.

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