There has been something I’ve noticed in the years I’ve blogged — either people tell you exactly who they are or they cover it up all together.
I’ve always wondered why.
When I first started blogging, it was through a message board I used to own. But it was pretty private and not many people read it. I then went to Blogger/Blogspot for a bit where, again, I was pretty private. I didn’t visit other blogs and didn’t do much with it.
Finally, I unveiled this version of my blog in late 2006.
I never covered up who I was, though I made a conscious effort to avoid the following:
- Talking about work (outside of really good things)
- Writing about massive controversial topics
I figured if I avoided controversy, I couldn’t get myself into trouble. And at the same time, it was a place for me to put my thoughts down in a journal-like area. That it happened to be online and some people would read it would just be a bonus.
Now, I didn’t go out of my way to tell people in my “real world” about the blog, but the reality is most of them knew about it and had read it at some point or another.
Again, I didn’t do anything to get myself into trouble, so that was good.
Through it all, I also never shied away from fessing up to who I was. It’s not hard to figure out who I am through this blog. I’ve stood by what I’ve written. When I lost my job, I had a post that I was extremely proud of. I didn’t bash people, I didn’t cry or complain about the situation — I went with it. I’m still rolling in it. I may not agree with it, but it’s part of life, the corporate world and the economy. There are far more people in my industry and in others who have suffered the same fate.
My name still has always been with this blog.
When I’ve written about my life or shown photos of my family/myself or talked about subjects that I enjoy, such as geocaching, disc golf, travel and whatever else, I’ve stuck by my words.
After all, they are my words.
There’s a flip side to that — and to many parts of the Internet (such as commenting on blogs, news sites, message boards etc.), being anonymous. I read several blogs where the person who writes won’t say who they are. They won’t talk about where they are from. Sometimes, there are really awesome posts. But they don’t stick by their words.
Maybe it’s because they don’t want to mix real life with online life.
Maybe it’s because they want to say things they never would dare say if their name was connected to it.
Or, maybe it’s because they like having that “separate life.”
I don’t know why it is, but some do it. And it’s starting to get frustrating at times. There are times I will refuse to comment on something because the writer won’t say who they are. I wonder, sometimes, why I should believe somebody who is blogging when they won’t tell me who they are or if they have the credentials to tell me what they are telling.
I would say the majority of bloggers I read stick by who they are. But others don’t.
I’m curious if there’s a reason people do it. I kind of hope a few anonymous bloggers stop by here and tell me why they do it. I’m sure there’s a good enough reason as to why one does it. And I’m fine with that. Everybody has the right to do things as they see fit. And, heck, as long as they aren’t doing personal attacks or being mean, have at it.
I say that because I’ve seen people on Internet message boards and such call people out in personal attacks and never stand by who they are.
On the two blogs I run, I rarely ever decline comments. I’m a believer that if I put something out there, people have the right to respond. I won’t allow comments that are personal attacks, or if they won’t stick behind their words. In others words, obvious fake e-mail addresses and no name attached. Outside of that, fair game.
Maybe I’m just easier to go with in the online world and being I try to avoid crazy subjects, it’s easier for me.
I’m like this with most of my online world. I utilize pretty much the same “name” online, including places like geocaching. But I like knowing who people are — which is why I hate when I go to a caching event and other cachers call me by my caching name. I’m one of those guys who like to know who I am speaking to or reading and not guessing.
So what say you? Are you an anonymous blogger or person in the online world? Do you stick by all you say? Let me know why below. I’m interested.
Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog [at] gmail.com. Also, please “Like” HooHaa Blog on Facebook!