Thursday, January 19, 2006

Do blogs change personalities and cultures?


"The modern mind is very fond of objectivity. It wants very much to think about ideas like truth and belief in such a way that personal, subjective interpretation is ruled out.

This way of thinking is a direct result of the technology of writing and printing, which separates the knower from the knowledge. For the first time people were able to stand outside their ideas, and observe them on a printed page.

This detachment had a profound effect, as it introduced the belief that we can stand outside something and judge it. In oral cultures, where there is no way to separate onself from one's ideas, the notion of objectivity almost never emerges."

--Shane A. Hipps, The Hidden Power of Electronic Culture (Zondervan, 2005, p.55).


Writing is superior to talking in many non-obvious ways.

Writing is a revolution whose latest incarnations are texting, instant messaging, blogs, and mashups (web applications hybrids) in which mapping and search technologies blend in strange and beneficial mutations.

Writing a blog is stabbing the herd instinct in the heart, it is a ferocious rising up against conformity and fear. It requires some degree of boldness, bravery, persistence, and assertiveness to be a successful, self-satisfied, results-achieving blogger.

Hipps says, on page 47, that "The broad introduction of literacy into an entire culture completely alters the way that culture thinks. Writing has the power to restructure the worldview of an entire society....our thinking patterns begin to mirror the specific form of media we use to communicate."

To write is to think. To think requires observation, questions, and memory. These are not conducive to optimum mind manipulation by Powers That Pretend To Be. To write is to defy, revolt, antagonize, chide, scold, and correct.

Writing terrifies people. As I often repeat ad nauseum, if you walk into a bar, or party, or gathering of family and friends, and start taking notes, you will be stopped, questioned, and condemned as not being "normal", not conforming to expectations and protocol.

Reading is also shunned and persecuted. I read a book in a bar, like I almost always do, one day, and someone asked me to stop. "I don't drink beer in a library, so you shouldn't read books in a bar."

I told him to get a haircut, the Vietnam war is over.

Anyway, writing is feared by average folk and rogue regimes, by repressive parents and tyrannical governments. Writers, artists, sociologists, philosophers, ethicists, political analysts, psychiatrists, anthropologists, all objective sciences and artistic disciplines are the spawn of individualism, not herd instinct totalitarianism.

Herds, zombified hordes, may erect pyramids, sphinxes, obelisks, and other monuments glorifying a control freak, domineering, enslaving tyrant and oppression system. But they cannot invent or liberate.

Writing is individual expression which means a determined rebellion against group-think.

Writing = individualism = revolution.

Now...how is blogging a specialized form of writing that differs from print and other online writing?

Let me hear your insight and opinion. Email me or schlumph a muphlisma comment onto this post.

What's your opinion?

Have blogs begun to alter or change your culture or your personality?

Has blogging had any impact on your lifestyle? Your relationships? Your boldness offline?

Has blogging or blogs made any difference in your circle of friends, in your country, in your home?

Do people treat you any differently?

How do they react when you try to explain blogs? Bored? Confused? Computer-stupid? Reluctant to reveal how uninformed they are?

Quick to turn the discussion to teenagers on MySpace, Xanga, LiveJournal, and blog traffic exchange sites?

Are you a bit more ready and able to defend your opinions offline...due to practice in blogocombat or friendly blog debate and discussion?

Does blogging enable you to "stand outside" your ideas, as you see them displayed as text in your blog post? Can you then critique your own thoughts more objectively? What a wonderful development! Self-therapeutic activity, blogging.



[signed] steven streight aka vaspers the grate

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