Thursday, February 12, 2009

Write on

I'm jumping on the bandwagon. I was alerted to this "issue" at Brit Gal Sarah's blog. You can take a look at her post about it, or go to the original source - Don Mills Diva, who is up in arms (and rightly so) about a recent article in the Times Online. "Danger Online; Perils of Revealing Every Intimate Moment", talks about well, revealing everything in your blog. Why some do it and what the consequences can be. You know the story; we've all debated it in the blogosphere and sorted out in our own minds how far we want to go there.

DMD is upset at the extensive quotes attributed to her, that were done in a completely different interview for a completely different publication. She's a trained, professional journalist herself, and objects to the shoddy work in the Times piece, especially when they are basically complaining that bloggers are ruining professional journalism.

Me, I just think it's absolutely laughable that a journalist should question the motives, morals or consequences of spilling your guts in a blog. Didn't we just spend a mind-numbing two years or something re-living Liz Jones' failing marriage and subsequent divorce in the Mail? And what about John Diamond's harrowing account of his ultimately unsuccessful battle with cancer? Yes, it was moving and educational, but you couldn't get more personal than that.

Every blogger knows that there are consequences when posting online, and as Potty pointed out in the Times Online article, it's almost impossible to remain anonymous. We all make a choice about how much of the personal stuff we write about. Some are just very private people, while others are motivated to keep schtum by the possibility that someone living up the street will read the blog.

Given the dire straits of print media at the moment, whether it's traditional books, newspapers or magazines, it's no wonder that journalists are looking over their shoulders. Why pay when you can read educated, informed and hilarious material online, for free? And with the plethora of talented writers blogging, it's putting a lot of so-called journalists to shame.

Take a look at the original article, copy the "Write on" logo and then blog about it.

In the words of Don Mills Diva:

I think everyone out there who blogs with passion and with creativity and with skill should speak up and declare themselves a Writer with a capital W. I think it's time that all bloggers, especially daddy and mommy bloggers (no, I don't resent that term - I embrace it) should demand the respect that their traffic, their influence and their talent commands.

I want you to speak up and tell the world that you and your writing and your blog deserve respect; from the Times On-Line, from the mainstream media and from every one of the millions of so-called "professional" journalists out there who have mused about whether blogs ruin journalism.

Write on bloggers

(Apologies to decent journalists, BTW.)


  1. I actually read all about this already and took action! thx for bringing this to everyone's attention, mind you!

  2. its great everyones on this, i posted about it last week l think.vital that everyone signs up virtually, I even alerted David (authorblog)about it and he's emailed them in bloggers favour..

  3. Thanks for your support - you're right it's laughable that papers complain of bloggers spilling thir guts and then post correspondents to catch "celebrities" on their way to the market...

  4. I am with you on it all. A good post. For me- if one person enjoys my blog in a day, whether it's my own personal ramblings, or a silly joke, I feel as if I have made a contribution!!

  5. And just to add fuel to the fire on this one; the comment of mine that they did use was a 'by the by' remark; the actual thrust of the e-mail I sent was that a blog does not have to reveal it's writer's deepest, darkest and most disgusting habits to be interesting.

    What she didn't include was this; that good bloggers 'draw you in with the power of their writing. They usually aren't publised authors, but the writing that many of them share online is better than a lot that you will find on the bookshelves; which is why, I think, they don't find it necessary to make increasingly personal revelations to keep their readers interested.'

    Respect the blog, indeed.

  6. I didn't know about this till your post. I have struggled sometimes about exposure, particularly as i post pictures. If I ever thought for a moment that some lunatic was out there following my blog I'd have to Jack it in. But how would you know?
    Their comments about journalism are ridiculous and sound like sour grapes.

  7. I suppose journalists are never going to love bloggers.

  8. PS: You should see my new masthead. Just don't show the journalists.

  9. I read the original article and was astonished later to discover that the journalist hadn't interviewed DMD.
    I do so agree with you. There are some cracking blogs out here with some really superb writing. No wonder journalists feel a bit touchy!

  10. Well I am a journalist as well as a blogger and let me just say that it is NOT good form to quote someone you haven't actually interviewed - unless you make it bloody clear that they were quoted elsewhere as saying that. And even then it smacks of laziness.

    I also emailed The Times, and actually the writer didn't misquote me......but I can understand why DMD is upset. And I think other journalists should watch out for bloggers; they've already put many of us out of jobs.....

  11. Oops sorry Nappy. I did acknowledge decent journalists at the bottom of the post BTW.
    And everyone should go and have a look at the Dotterel's new masthead (Bringing up Charlie). It's hilarious.

  12. Yes, I read that article too, and wondered, for a moment, if I was one of the attention-seeking saddos he was so scathing about, but at the end of the day I write what I'm comfortable with, my decision.

  13. Good to have you onboard, I think they're just feeling threatened. The Liz Jones comment made me chuckle...too damn true!


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