Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Blogging has Replaced the Diary

Blogging is strange. See, blogging has replaced the culture of a hidden diary. Who out there still has a diary that they keep hidden in a draw to write in from day to day? As the internet becomes more commonplace, physical forms of recorded communication are being replaced. One day there will be no handwritten documents to discover under a bed for an editor to turn into the next diary of Anne Frank. There will only be archives. The archives of different sites copied and pasted into an order based off time codes to show the progression of a person’s life.

People like diaries. Diaries are a way to vent, to express emotion, to communicate. Communicating important events and expressing emotions helps a person psychologically. It is good for us and so a diary is a way of helping the self communicate, sometimes in place of actual human contact. Even if you’ve never kept a written diary you’ve had conversations that serve the same function as a diary.

So in place of a diary we have blogs these days. I like blogging; I’ve been blogging for years. I move from one blogging site to the next, updating them constantly if I can (sorry I have neglected my blogspot, but I will try to write more here). It has got to the point where I’m really comfortable being personal online where a bunch of strangers can see it. This poses a problem because it is blurring the lines between what is personal and what is impersonal... where is the distinction between what I can share to everyone, or what I should take to with only my friends or closest friends? At what point does a post become so personal on Tumblr that I should put a “read more” break so people don’t read it unless they genuinely care? The last year of my life has been a really interesting one, but also not very well documented on here unlike previous years.
I got drunk for the 2nd time this year. There were heartbreaks and joys. There were sleepless nights. There were moments of self doubt. There were stressful weeks where I wished to shut out everything and sleep. There have definitely been times where I needed to reach out to a person and whinge or vent and my blog tempted me with its impersonal audience of strangers... over 400 people on one site... 100 on another... post it here and write a few choice phrases and people will find it on Google looking for answers to their history homework questions (it is weird seeing how google traffic works). I have been known to write long blog posts and boy could I write a doozy of a post on my recent thoughts about who I’d like to be as a person but perhaps that’s not for you...

Do you ever stop to think about how you’re getting attached to your blog? Do you ever stop to think about how much of yourself is divulged?

Perhaps you’re sharing too much... I think we’re starting to live in a culture of sharing. The personal diary has been replaced by an online blog that is theoretically capable of being accessed by billions of people and Facebook allows us to tell hundreds of our “friends” where we are, who we’re with, and what we’re doing every moment of the day or night, and wi-fi and smart phones are ubiquitous.

Me sharing too much isn’t really a problem on this blog... but I’m going to make sure it isn’t on others.


nathanhobby said...

Interesting post; I like the way you write. Came here looking for perspectives on the future archive - will there be physical diaries to unearth or will there only be blogs, like you say? I'm leaning toward there still being a number of people who keep a handwritten journal. Paul Longley Arthur is one of the few scholars to write about this ("Saving Lives" in Save As... Digital Memories) and he agrees with you!

Bilby P. Dalgyte said...

I should check that out then! Thank you!