Saturday, January 9, 2016

Quoted: Julia Serano on conventional blogging

(Reblogged from my Tumblr)
When I first started blogging in the mid-’00s (on LiveJournal, before moving things over to this site), there was a strong community element to blogging. Most of the people commenting on my posts had blogs of their own, often similarly focused on transgender, queer, feminist, and/or social justice matters. I would read their blogs, and they would read mine. Sometimes we’d cross-post each other’s pieces, or write posts about one another’s posts (linking to the original piece, plus adding our own thoughts on the subject). And sometimes, we’d continue the discussion in the comments section using our names/blogging-handles so that it was easy for everyone involved to follow who was saying what to whom. It was by no means an “internet utopia”—fierce disagreements and flame wars often broke out. But it did feel more like an actual conversation, perhaps because we all had “skin in the game” (i.e., as activists, as members of overlapping online communities). -- Julia Serano
Julia Serano I’d been off the social media grid, so to speak, for a while before I resurrected my Tumblr and Facebook accounts. It was a lot of things, apathy in general – I also took myself off all but a single forum I still visist – but also what I call “writing on eggshells.” Your blog is your “home.” Facebook,Tumblr, Twitter especially is like renting an apartment: it’s understood that you should not disturb your neighbors. In that respect, communities that sprung up around conventional blogs had an edge. I’ve been blogging as long as Serano has, in some form or another, and I really do appreaciate the long form. Yeah, you can do that here or Facebook too, but there was a certain freedom I don’t see anymore. Fewer discussions, but without the ideological purity tests that seem to necessitate having to explain yourself in 140 characters or fewer.