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Anonymous vs Identified Blogging...

9.14.2009

So, I have not been blogging for very long at all. When I first started, there was no option in my mind to go it "anonymous." Which is a little weird because I did dance around the idea of keeping the other "characters" in my stories nameless. However, after thinking about the people that would most likely read my blog (friends and family) I figured they would all know anyways. I did ask each of the people I felt would appear the most in my ramblings whether they felt comfortable with me writing about them and using their names, and since most of them dont care or know much about blogs, they were all very fine with it. So, I guess, I am an identified blogger.

I hadn't thought much further about it until I began reading a book in which the author starts a blog and keeps not only her characters but herself anonymous, or at least, she does for a while. I feel that I am pretty honest in my blog. I am, at times, brutally honest in my real life, so i guess it is easy to keep that going through my writing. But I, now, cant help but wonder what else I would say if my audience didn't actually know who I was. Would that be a good or a bad thing? This whole blogging thing has been so therapeutic. I had no idea the effect it would have on me. I have always written. I have always kept a journal of some sort. But this writing is different. Having others read my daily happenings or deepest thoughts is an amazing thing. So part of me wonders if it would be that much better if I were anonymous and could say that much more. I really have no idea.

I mean there are people that actually check in on a regular basis to see what I am writing. I still cant believe that. I absolutely love all the feedback I get. It is an indescribable feeling when you lay something so personal out there, something you cannot sort out within yourself and sometimes immediately get some one sharing their story and telling you they know exactly how you are feeling. I feel so terribly fortunate to have found and embraced this outlet. Everything has been idyllic thus far and I do not know why I am not questioning the way I am doing things. Am I being selfish? Thinking if I were to have gone it anonymous I could be getting even more out of this? Or would I hate it? I have always been a bit of a spotlight addict. What if still got praise for my writing and honesty but no one actually knew who I was. Would I be as satisfied? I still do not know.

I guess the reason I am writing about this today is because I am craving a bit of a response. This is a topic I would love to hear other peoples views on. Are you anonymous or identified? What are the pros and cons of each? Any additional views or opinions would be greatly appreciated. I love a good discussion, so anything is welcomed! Thanks and I cant wait to hear from all of you!

14 comments:

  1. I think blogging should be identified as followers will feel more attached when reading your stories/article.

    It's like reading an unplanned book, a new chapter will be opened with every blog post, new characters revealed unexpectedly.

    It really depends how you treat your blog. This could be your online diary which is buried within the worldwideweb, waiting to be dug up by a passer by.

    Love the photo for this article!

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  2. My blog is a mix of both.
    I haven't ever used my last name or my boyfriend's name and I changed the name of a woman that I lived with in fear that she would read it someday (but I'm sure she could figure out that I was talking about her). I want to write about work things a lot but I fear that they will find my blog someday as well. I'd like to write more freely as well...so maybe I will create another blog and make it completely annoymous. It's really hard because you want to be real and talk about what you care about, so why would you want to take the extra time to change names and be extra cautious. So yeah, I have mixed feelings. :D I like your blog though!

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  3. Heys,

    Personally, I do not need to know who you are in order to fall in love with your writing. Identifying yourself, to me, is merely putting a face and a name to the entries. A name and a face doesnt tell me anything about you. However, it's ur faceless entries that does. And your entries.... they speak to me. Lovely.

    I'd have probably imagined u with a different face. A different colour. Perhaps more beautiful. Perhaps less. It keeps readers wondering if ure as beautiful as you write, or you're one of those ugly ducklings whom people wun give a second look when theyre in school or on the streets.

    An interesting experiment would be to create 2 more of the same blog - one with no face and one with a face that's not as sweet as the one you hv here. haha..

    Im a little bit of both. I am one of many characters in my entries. Though it's obvious to me and some friends that they're me, writing "anonymously" gives me that extra breathing space to deny and say, "That's not me."

    haha!

    M (:

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  4. Anonymity can have a creative effect with your writing. If that's what you're going for, it allows you to subtract yourself and paint a more "fictional" story. You can create names that inherit a planned connection with your dialog. Sometimes that's exactly what's needed.

    It really depends on how you want to use your blog or what your blog is to you. There are so many ways to use a blog these days that writing anonymously or identified can indicate a variety of things. So in the end, it just becomes another tool for you to use when defining your voice.

    So whatever the reason is you identify yourself and your characters it's a means to an end. You are giving life and a hint of meaning to something that wasn't there before, you're words.

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  5. i don't think that there's a point to blogging anonymously on the internet anymore. people can likely figure out who you are anyway

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  6. Hi Lacey!

    I never even thought about blogging anonymously but i don't use my full name so I guess I fall in between. Basically I am searchable on google (i think) but not by my full name. All my family and friends know my blog address and I write about them sometimes. By using a nickname you keep you blog hidden from professional colleagues and old friends you don't want up in your buisiness.

    But for me personally, I don't need to know a bloggers real name or any of that. It really boils down to the writing. If I enjoy or connect to the words, I wouldn't even know the difference if their identity was real or made up.

    It's a little freeing blogging anonymously , I would assume. But aren't we all anonymous to each other anyway?

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  7. hi! I'm over here from 20SB. I kind of fall in between...I never use my first name or my husband's first name and I refer to most of my friends by the first initial of their name (at their request). I don't care if the blogs I read are anonymous or identified, I don't need to know that about other people, although I do get curious if they're anonymous. :)

    There are a few things that keep me semi-anonymous - I complain quite a bit about work, which I wouldn't want my employer to see. Also, my husband is in the military so there are other privacy and security concerns involved with that. And finally, I know I would censure myself if I knew my family was reading. Many of my real-life friends do have the blog address, so I'm definitely not completely anonymous though.

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  8. I'm completely open about the real me. I do, however, just use first initials when talking about friends and nicknames for the people I mention regularly. I try not to censor myself too much, but I know if nobody knew who I was... I would probably say a bit more. And I actually don't mention my blog to friends. My family knows it exists, but they don't read it that I know of... I don't really put it out there for them. I'd probably shut down a little more if I knew they were reading... is that weird? I'd rather get deep with a bunch of stranger-friends! haha

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  9. BTW there is a discussion in the forum over at 20SB about this very topic today

    http://www.20sb.net/forum/topics/do-you-reveal-your-identity-on

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  10. I am identified. I blog for two reasons.

    1. To force myself to write. See this post- 99% of bloggers can relate, I'm sure: http://rootsandrings.wordpress.com/2009/08/04/an-open-book/

    2. To be able to get my memories and experiences down on "paper" so my family can revisit them whenever they want. My husband, parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, granparents all read my blog because it helps us all hold on to memories.

    That said- I believe there is a need for some privacy. I talk a lot about my life. But my readers don't know everything about me or my husband. There is a need to find a balance that will allow you to write freely, but also protect your family.

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  11. So far I have 3 blogs, two of which are identified and the last one is anonymous. The last one is really a personal thing where I am completely honest with myself and as you said blogging is therapeutic. I keep this one to myself because I know my family and friends read the other two and they can be opinionated on some of my emotional posts. Sometimes I put things out there just to put it out there. So far being anonymous has been good for me, but I like the feedback from the identified blogs as well.

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  12. I honestly think it depends on the person. I write about jeans... not exactly breaking open some office conspiracy there. But some people, depending on what they write about, need that anonymity. It's something that can really only be judged on a case-by-case basis.

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  13. My blog is semi-annoymous, my blog is associated with the name, 'She', but I also link to my Facebook in the sidebar which has my real name (and picture) on it. I prefer not to use an alias, but I had a situation where my co-workers at my last job and an x-boyfriend found my blog, and in the co-workers case, it was a little awkward. As for my ex, he was a stalker, so...

    I think one day I will go back using my name, but since I recently started fresh with a new blog, an alias is okay for now until I get more comfortable.

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  14. We're identified. We haven't experienced any issues with it yet. Fingers crossed. : )

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Thoughts?

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