Recently a post about the pretentiousness of bloggers was passed around and mocked with great vim and vigor. It got me to thinking about this strange form of exhibitionism that has even the leaders and media stars of our culture getting into the act. I have seen many bloggers discuss their reasons for blogging and describe the benefits that come from this activity. I have yet to see anyone actually discuss the psychological affect it has on us as individuals and how it affects our lives outside of it. Of course, this meme could have been posted to death the week before I discovered blogs. But hey, consider this a zombie meme if that is the case.
Blogs have been called the great equalizer, giving everyone a forum for their thoughts and ideas. Blogs have been hailed as the new communication medium and a force to be reckoned with. This is all true, but I see blogs as epic sagas writ small. They are the morality plays, the Canterbury tales of our generation. They are us at our best. In the early nineties, chat rooms came to the forefront and ushered in the internet age. Critics decried it as dehumanizing and saw it destroying those interpersonal communication skills that are so vital to greasing the wheels of society. This has proven to be true, chat room occupants were given the leeway of hiding behind screen names and pretending to be whatever they wanted their audience to be. The negative ramifications of this can be seen in the news almost daily.
The blog is the antithesis of the chat room evolution. Chat rooms were digital rooms filled with people shouting over the din to be heard, furtively making eye contact with anyone willing. It was kind of like those parties you had when your parents went away for the weekend, sans vomiting.
Blogging is competitive, we want to be recognized, otherwise we would be scribbling in our Big Chief tablets. In this competition, you are the one firing the starter gun and waving the checkered flag. You are your worst critic and strongest competition. Your rewards are the accolades of others and the hate mail of those you hold in contempt. They are the tangible recognition of your efforts. Blogging demands a severe sort of honesty and integrity that one doesn