Sunday, November 09, 2008

What blogging tells you about yourself

I realise I've been blogging intermittently for more than two years now. In the time that I've been doing it I've had bursts of creativity and feeling that I've just had to get down on the page, and other periods (much of this year if I'm honest) where the mojo has been lacking and I've not felt that I've had quite so much to say, or at least that I've been prepared to say.

But looking at the post admin pages for the blog, and at the posts that I've started and not ever finished, or bothered to post, I'm conscious that, for all the wonderful effects that blogging can have on your learning, the fact that it is public and open to the scrutiny of your peers and colleagues, clients and competitors, means that there is usually a need to be circumspect in what you commit to the page.

There are posts that I've started that I've never published since they run contrary to my employer's position on the matter, or pieces that I've re-read and dropped since they could be interpreted as a critique of work by colleagues and clients (or even my own) that some people may not intpret as being helpful. There posts where I've simply not been comfortable with the way that I've articulated by point and I've left them with the intention of coming back to edit them and, well, they're still waiting. Heck, there are even comments that I would like to have made on other people's blogs that I've pulled after typing.

Is this right? Should your employer's line on something stop you from having, or exploring, contrary points of view? Should the fear that someone may have thought you knew about something stop you using your blog to reflect on it when you have something to say? Should the thought that a piece of advice you might make to another blogger as a comment may not be politically sound, even if it is unrelated to your day job? If so, does this raise questions about how you choose to blog, and make it available? If a blog is for CPD, is it right to place it in the public domain?

My discarded comments are lost in the digital dust of cached pages and autofill memories but looking through the subject matter of unpublished blog entries I can see that there are themes to some of those abandoned posts that are telling me some interesting things about me that perhaps I should look to revisit and do something about.

I guess that this fits the adage that what is not said is sometimes as important as what is said.

Questions that this whole issue raises, what does your abandoned scribbling tell you about your self?

This post with thanks to Clive Shepherd whose own exploration of what his blog means to him and to others prompted me to commit this comment to the page, and, crucially, the 'publish post' button.
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