On How Blogging Became Soul-less

I know that I’ve been in bed for far too long when I started rummaging through my old blogs — some of which I have created since I was in high school. It started with me blog-hopping, searching for awesome personal things to read while I’m stuck in bed on a Friday evening. I ended up on home pages of past classmates, really close friends I haven’t seen in the last 3 years. And these pages haven’t been touched in the last 7 years. Remember Blogdrive? Live Journal? This kind of thing makes me really nostalgic.

Life was so simple. I had a blog and I could write any random thing I could think of, any funny anecdote that happened to me that day, any stupid question that bothered me, just as I would post something random on Facebook nowadays… or not. Not really. There’s been such a great change as to what we post online these days as compared to a couple of years ago. Before, a blog was just an online personal journal you’d keep for yourself (and perhaps a select couple of friends and acquaintances who were net-savvy and/or who cared about what you have to say). In my own “online journals”, it was so noticeable how much I really didn’t give a shit what other people say. I was ranting, raving, cussing, corny joking — there was absolutely no way my parents, or my teachers, or my relatives would get their hands on those pages anyway. If I wanted to, I could setup an anonymous blog and smash my heart into it (of course, I can still do the same now, but why would I?). We keepers of online journals weren’t “bloggers” — what the hell is a blogger anyway? We were just normal, earth-walking individuals with thoughts and feelings who happened to find a place to express them on the web. Well I don’t know how other older dudes blogged at that time, but that’s how my generation did it. And that’s the only thing that matters as far as this post is concerned.

Anyhow, back to the story. In my head, I started comparing those old journals to today’s blogs, including mine, and was hit by this realization: blogs have become somewhat soul-less. Thanks to the Whole Wide World getting their hands dirty on the World Wide Web, we, the same normal, earth-walking individuals have started filtering our words and posts senseless — perhaps for some fear that so and so will see it and will think so and so. But of course, that’s about the wisest thing to do. It would be dumb to post every single time you think your teacher is barok, or that your seatmate stinks, or worse, say something real foul about someone at work. That’s just tantamount to suicide. I just mean that blogs these days are rather — I can’t seem to find the word for it — hrm, bland. It’s missing a bit of soul somewhere, even the personal blogs (even my blog).

I mean, people still talk about family, and love, and life, but it is very rare that anybody quite hits it. Nowadays, it seems that having a personal blog just means you can talk about yourself, the places you traveled to, how you love a particular restaurant, how you partied with your friends last night… Yada yada ya. I realize as I read through various blogs — and I may only be one of a few — that the posts that interest me most are those that are human; those that have gone through less filtering and are, in a sense, more personal. You know, it’s very, very rare that you find anyone remotely human online these days. Everybody is a “traveler”, “tech expert”, “foodie”, “party-goer”, “rockstar” or “fashionista”. Where have the friends and mothers and fathers and lovers and… people gone?

This is just my opinion, but it seems that’s a hole that’s yet to be filled by modern “bloggers” — or perhaps anyone writing anything on the web.  To put one’s soul into a piece of writing means to expose oneself, which is something that people generally avoid. Quite understandable too, considering a single wrong word accidentally posted online can destroy lives in an instant. The result is people trying to sound human (including myself), and forgetting about actually being human.

So, what do you think?

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