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A Blog ... is not a Diary

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Events in the last week have illustrated to me rather vividly why a blog isn't the same thing as a diary.

Now I'm an "open discloser", I'll talk about myself until the cows come home. Have done on the Web for years, both here and on my stroke diary.

But for me there's a limit to that. And the limit is where what you write starts to affect other people. So for example in the past week there's been an event which those in my circle of friends know about which has affected us all to a greater or lesser extent: I know I've spent quite a lot of time thinking about it. But it's not something I'd talk about here any more specifically than that whereas I would if it was a diary which only I would read.

What's interesting is that for some people there seems to be no real limit. For example I was reading a blog last week where the woman was discussing her relationship with her very new boyfriend in quite intimate1 detail. I wonder if he would be comfortable if he knew what she was saying.

The Web is a brave new world. I remember back in the '90s evangelising about it. The idea that I could write things and post them on the Web to be read by anyone, anywhere without going through all that struggle to get things printed, published and distributed was such a marvellous thing and filled me with joy. I was met with many blank faces then but with the birth of blogging sites making it easy for anyone to put their thoughts up on the Web2 people have really got it now.

It's a wonderful thing.

But I do worry that some people have forgotten there still exists a line between public and private.

  1. No, no, no, not that sort of intimate!
  2. See how I avoided mentioning Web 2.0 there - hope you were impressed.

Tags: blogging Written 15/01/08

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