Are we really as transparent in the blogosphere as we think we are? Do we need to be 100% transparent, and should we care if we are? I found myself extensively references in an entry on J LeRoy's blog and because there are not emoticons, I'm not sure if he's snarking at me or not.
However, he has some minor misinterpretations of me as a blogger--one of them being that because I use the tagline "Walking naked down the center lane of the information superhighway" on my other blog that that particular blog is a very revealing and racy blog. It really isn't. It is personal, to a degree, and I explain this to J on my comments to his post. I may indeed discuss certain aspects of my life, but even then, is there any real proof that those incidents that seem so very naked are just that. Perhaps they are fictions, perhaps they are memoir. No real way to know, acutally, unless I tell y'all.
Even so, I'm not baring a nip on either blog, so I'm not as naked as some other bloggers happen to be.
Further, J seems to think all bloggers are the same and are very knowledgeable and can discern an advertiser's blog from a person's. Yeah, I know about the Juicy Fruit fake blog, and some others, even the ones that are developed as personnas for corporations. But there are lot of people who have blogs who aren't sophisticated adults and have some trouble distinguishing advertising from personal blogging.
Hey, when I was a kid, alot of us couldn't figure out the Partridge Family wasn't a bunch of studio musicians until the adults told us. The thing is, there are alot of adults who don't know what kids are up to, and perhaps won't be able to advise young people about fake corporate blogs--not to mention that there are some adults who can't tell the difference either. Think of a guy who believes the hype about porn queens...
J also references a post by his friend Jon Ramer who's involved in something called
The Interra Project. Jon seems to think that collected information can be used by community leaders and civic organizations for the common good. Oh, man! is that a bit on the pollyanna side! While not a conspiracy theorist, I'm well acquainted not just with the philosophers who purported that human existence is something that is "nasty, brutish, and short," but also that man might be moral but that societies might behave in imorral ways to protect themselves (Reinhold Neibur's 'Moral Man and Immoral Society.') Organized efforts to collect information on individuals might start out being just to better market stuff and right now be super-annoying, but those efforts could evenutally lead to Big Brother Scenarios. Think of the Patriot Act and all the wrangling that went on over government access to individual's library records.
Further, do you think a completely paranoid government run by theo-neo-cons could avoid pursuading well-intentioned community leaders to turn over information mined from the blogosphere?? Maybe I'm sounding a bit like Margaret Atwood in "A Handmaid's Tale," but I'm not sure I'm all that far off.
If well-meaning politically correct parents could stop a staging of "West Side Story" because it is "racist," as happened in Amherst, Mass--well, anything can happen given the right circumstances...
I'm just surprise someone so bright as J LeRoy could be such a Rousseauist and think that there isn't some wiggle room. and kind of offended that he didn't take the time to read Love and Hope and Sex and Dreams ;-)