5 Dangers Of Blogging
You’re going to start a blog. You finally decided to take the plunge and satisfy your inner “legend in your own mind” narcissist self. Your are a decent writer, or not. You have a lot of interesting stuff to tell the world, or not. And, you want your voice to be heard by millions of adoring fans and make oodles of money; this one you want for sure, but, reality check, it’s likely not going to happen.
So you’re chasing the American dream cyberstyle. Welcome to the Blogosphere, a.k.a. the land of self-publication and self-promotion. Scared of being exposed and vulnerable? The good news is that you can do all of the above without any risk to people knowing who you are. All of your self-love or self-loathing, for those of us who get off on being way down on ourselves, can be posted under an assumed (fake) name, attached to an unrelated avatar/picture and, you can tell the world you are from anywhere, or nowhere. The feeling of unfettered freedom is intense, if not a little scary. You can be anything from a smiling sunrise, even you have a depressed personality, to a dancing banana. How about being a super cute cartoon version of you, one that is actually so much better looking that the real you that no one will recognize your true identity? Or, how about just representing yourself as a random thing (cupcake, automobile, the peace sign), a random animal (cats and rabbits seem particularly popular), or a random disembodied body part (like the pair of legs in our avatar– hey at least we definitely have a pair of legs, granted our real legs are not nearly as long and shapely)- again, how liberating!
This is all great, but keep in mind that there is a dark side to blogging that few of us hear about. The ride through Blogdom, for most, is a F*&%$d-up-but-never-dull one. Here are 5 things that no one ever tells you, but that you should definitely know before starting on your blogging adventure/misadventure:
1. You WILL feel like an idiot. You will frequently be more confused after reading the definitions of various blog terms, such as: PHP, CSS, HTML, RSS, SEO. The list is endless. We bet the term you will be using the most often when starting your blog is: WTF.
2. Your ass WILL double in size. This has less to do with the fact that you are sitting in front of a computer all day, and more to do with the fact that you are eating an inordinate amount junk while sitting there stressing either because you have no idea what to write about, or because only 6 people, 5 of which are your friends and family members, are reading your blog. On the bright side, some part of your 24/7, WTF-am-i-doing-helplessly-glued-to-the-computer life will be spent “socializing” with your new friends in cyberspace, your fellow bloggers. This brings us to the next point.
3. You WILL piss off all your “I’ve actually met this person in the flesh” friends. You will have no time to talk on the phone, go to lunch or just hang out for coffee. Even when you do, your friends will not have your full attention as you will constantly be updating your Facebook page, scanning your blog for new comments or tweeting with your cyberpals using Twitterrific, which your friends have renamed “Twitterhorrific.” Hopefully for every real friend you lose, you will gain 20 virtual ones. That’s because your “hood” is no longer confined to the local playground or the Starbucks on the corner, and your “peeps” are no longer just the folks you might run into while frequenting these locales. No, you are now one with the Social Media Universe, but this does not come easy. See point 4.
4. You WILL quickly become a social media ho. Get ready to spend more time trying to figure out how to get people to “follow” you on Twitter or “Like” you on Facebook than you do writing those mind-blowing, soul-searching and uber-interesting posts for your blog. Be prepared to “Stumble Upon” interesting information or to be “Digged” by random strangers. No personal boundaries here, but don’t worry you get to keep your panties on.
5. Finally, you WILL become a Dooce wannabe and start talking about all kinds of “poop” better left unsaid. The Blogosphere is so easy to enter and so quickly affirming that suddenly you will start blogging about personal truths that even your mom or husband don’t know about: “Had sex last night, horrible. LOL.” Or, you will start to dribble out inane tidbits of information like, “Woke up. Hungry, Going to eat.” or “In the toilet, can’t wait to see you” Stuff that either a) no one really wants to know, or b) stuff that only your mom or husband should or could know (Though in the case of our second example, that would mean that your mom or husband were sitting next to you while you were on the toilet. Hopefully this is a highly unlikely scenario).
Well, we have to run. We gotta get off the can and meet the caricature artist who’s going to make us look hot!