On Blogging

Blogging. What is it? Why do people do it? Why am I a wee bit fascinated by the whole notion?

All those thoughts have run through my head and I have struggled to come with a response to any one of them that a rational person could be satisfied with.

I have technically had a Blog on the go for a while now, posting to Blogger from time to time. I have found the experience broadly unsatisfying. Mostly, that seems to be because I seldom feel that I really have anything of sufficient import that it deserves entry to the public domain. With no disrespect to those who publish "stream of consciousness" type Blogs, I can't see the point in entry after entry full of "today I fed the cat - the cat was happy". For many years I wrote a diary as a personal exercise but I never felt the need to publish it. Looking back over it, I have no idea why anyone would want to read it. The ability to publish to the Internet places in our hands the potential to each be a publisher

The ease of the process can be variable but fundamentally, if you have a computer, a phone, or anything at all with an Internet connection, you now essentially own your own printing press. That's the sort of thing we couldn't have dreamt of twenty years ago. As with so many technological advances, the power or ability to do something, doesn't mean that we should all necessarily do it. Just because a vanity publisher might agree to print a book of mine doesn't mean that I should gleefully hand over my manuscript - "Three Hundred Types of Fluff and how to Identify Them". The world is almost certainly not ready for that page-turner. Essentially, some thoughts are perhaps best kept to oneself.

At this point, the irony in my posting this is not escaping me. Take your mouse away from the "Comment" box.

After thinking about all this for a while, I decided that the best thing to do was not to over analyse. Again, I recognise the irony

I have looked at some of my favourite Blogs like NewtownLass and Bloggin fae the 'Burn and have been massively intimidated by the content. Mark and Fiona both manage to lay their hands on sizeable quantities of information which they selflessly post and share. They provide a great resource and the worthiness of their posting is enough to put you off. It makes me want to slink into the corner and keep my digital head down. I'm never going to have the time, apart from anything else, to post stuff of that quality or worth.

So, what to do? Give up? Shut down the Blog and say that game's not for me? Could do. But I'm too stubborn for that.

Coincidentally, I discovered Posterous last year. For those unfamiliar with it, it is a Blogging service which sits somewhere between Blogger and Wordpress on the one hand and the microblogs on the other. Posting can be web based or by email and they have a nifty way of organising photos and video, including a really easy to use iPhone application. I started to upload a few bits and pieces to Posterous, created a couple of galleries and started to really like it. You can also link other sites and services for autoposting, so Blogger, Wordpress, Twitter and the rest can all be hooked up and kept updated. All very easy. Recently, they have been suffering a nasty DDoS attack, but once that is resolved it will hopefully return to the easy to use platform that it has been developing into

So, in Posterous lies the answer. I'm going to try to worry less about the absolute quality of the content. That doesn't mean that I'm going to switch off the spell checker. It doesn't mean that I'm going to start telling everyone about the feeding habits of the cat I don't have. What it does mean is that I am going to worry a little less about the "theme" of the Blog. I am an Ulster-Scot, but that doesn't mean that the only thing I care about is Ulster-Scots

Therefore, the Blog will hopefully be a rounder effort, reflecting me and not only a part of me.

Coincidentally, I have also been able to create additional Blogs through Posterous specifically to cover some of my interests and I'll post more about them once I start to populate them with content. So, there you are. I have thought about Blogging and these are the thoughts. If you are one of the very few people who will ever read this, and you happen to be reading it other than on aiblins.com, then you are looking at one of the cross-postings.

The .com address is probably the best place to read it, mostly due to the image handling, but enjoy it wherever you are.