Tuesday, November 9, 2010
The Beauty (and Bane) of Blogging
Think about it. Before this age in history, you needed to convince someone to publish you, or have the ability to do it yourself, to spread your ideas to the world. Well, that or you stood on street corners and yelled. But those people were looked down on. Rabble-rousers. Being quiet and decent was apparently not good enough for them. Even with newspapers, your voice only carries as far as the paper can (and papers come in handy for many things. Hats, brooches, pterodactyls...). Not to mention the cost of publishing. But welcome to the 21st century, where I can see updates of my friend's newborn daughter on the other side of the world while getting live updates of weather (though really, how hard can it be to be a meteorologist in Seattle? "Well, today will be between 40 and 70 F, partly cloudy with a chance of rain"). Provided I've got internet connection, which is still free at libraries in my corner of the world, I could theoretically always be communicating with this strange new online world. And in this world, any of us with a basic computer understanding can write whatever we like and send it to the masses. Our sphere of influence has suddenly increased exponentially, as well as what can have influence over us. We have truly phenomenal access to information in this age. I can search for somewhere I've never been and see pictures of each intersection I have to cross to get there, without leaving my chair and still manage to get lost driving.
Of course, the beauty is that now there's a chance to hear the stories of people who, quite frankly, are ordinary. We get to see the plain exposed in a new light, the everyday told in an unfamiliar way. There's a glorious mess of voices out there, all clamoring for our attention. So many of us writing, some to be noticed, some to promote a cause, some to vent, some to vent about those who are venting, some to complain about people who write sentences without proper structure. As Aristotle says," Democracy arises out of the notion that those who are equal in any respect are equal in all respects; because all men are equally free, they claim to be absolutely equal"; such is the view of writing. Suddenly, there is no filter on what is available, and irrelevant, irreverent writing abounds (of course, that happened long before the internet). Writing is art, and all of us who are literate, artists. Wordsmiths. Blogging just gives us another medium.
Just some thoughts. A suggestion for curing boredom: search quotes on democracy (or any subject, for that matter).