What’s blogging all about?

I was more than a little surprised to find the following, rather unfriendly and cryptic, comment in my inbox a few days ago. I was in two minds about sharing it but it’s brought up a couple of things I’d like to discuss, so here it is:

Forget the blog post. I won’t blow smoke in your face and say I’m so glad that I read your post. What I will say is that people who go by a pseudonym annoy me. No name, no way to connect on LinkedIn or follow on Twitter. As well, your subtitle is a bit self-defeating and not a good way to start the branding process. None of this would have to be said in the form of a reply if I knew who you are and how to contact you; because I would like to offer a bit of professional advice. Namely, I’m not the only professional old-timer who is going to see your talented prose but wonder, “Are you for real?” So, two things that piss me off: one) you are a talented writer, yet immature; two) I don’t know how to contact you to tell you this in front of others who are to follow your writing, including my much respected pen pal, Rebecca. Sorry if this offends you, Rebecca. Bob McIntosh http://www.linkedin.com/in/bobmcintosh1

Assault on the anonymous

I choose to blog anonymously for two main reasons:

1. I feel that it helps me to be more honest in my writing

2. I’d rather my current and potential employers didn’t come across my confused ramblings

I don’t write this blog as any form of self-promotion or marketing. I write it for myself, to help me to explore career ideas and thoughts and to share these with others, and to enable me to read the thoughts and ideas of others who I can learn from. Being anonymous allows me to do this completely freely.

A supportive community?

Until I received the comment above I was pleased to be part of what I’d so far found to be a welcoming and supportive community of like-minded people. To me blogging isn’t about always agreeing with others’ views, but it is about being constructive and supportive.

I’d love to hear your views:

– How do you feel about anonymous bloggers like myself?

– What’s blogging all about for you?

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10 comments on “What’s blogging all about?

  1. farahcolette says:

    Agh, the self-branding obsession! Ignore it – blogging is a useful tool for branding, sure, but it is also a great place to get feedback, and be yourself without worrying about unnecessary exposure, which is a great safe haven to have in today’s hyperconnected world.

  2. Oh my, oh my, oh my. I feel somehow responsible for all of this, given that my NAME in here. I hope you don’t hold me accountable.

    Bob actually posted an apology piece about this recently – but I had no idea it was you! This was an unacceptable lash-out on his part – especially now that I can read the content – and I think he realizes that. But that does not make it disappear.

    In answer to your questions, it doesn’t bother me one iota that you post anonymously. I’d thought of doing the same myself, and am certain I’d have started blogging much sooner if I had, which would have been enriching and would have helped me grow. You bring insightful, well-written pieces into the blogosphere (hence the number of times I’ve mentioned you in the meat of my posts; that’s rare for me) and whether you want to attach your name to it or not, that’s completely your decision. You’re doing the world a service, in my opinion, and it’s even more commendable to do so without desiring an ego boost or building some sort of brand.

    Again, sorry for guilt by association…

    • I don’t hold you accountable at all Rebecca – please don’t feel guilty! To be honest I did wonder why your name was mentioned as I was pretty certain you wouldn’t agree with what was said in the comment; you’re always so supportive.

      Thanks for mentioning the apology piece otherwise I might not have seen it. I did have a look at it but it didn’t really make things much clearer to me. I just don’t understand why someone who I’ve never had any interaction with before would write such a… well, angry, comment.

      I definitely wouldn’t have started blogging if not anonymously. Keeping personal thoughts separate to my professional life is really important to me. I do understand why some people choose to create a personal brand, but it’s definitely not for me. My blog is completely fulfilling it’s purpose – exploring and sharing thoughts and ideas away from today’s hyper-connected world (as Farah so nicely puts it above).

      I really appreciate your support and kind comments :)

  3. suzie81 says:

    I think the purpose of blogging is to write. There doesn’t need to be an explanation as to why or an agenda, and you’re absolutely entitled to remain anonymous!

    All the best!

  4. This comment is so ridiculous I don’t even know where to begin. If this person finds you so immature, why read your blog? There are quite literally millions of others out there. You have absolutely every right to blog anonymously, and the “branding process”? Give me a break. Newsflash…not everyone is looking to build a “personal brand” (that term really makes me cringe)…and the fact that you do blog anonymously is a pretty good indication that’s not what you’re after! Why this person thinks it’s his place to offer you “advice” is beyond me, but I don’t think this comment is good for HIS brand :)

    • I think that’s what surprised me the most – why write this comment in response to one of my posts when surely there are thousands of other young people writing anonymously about career issues. I do get why people work to create a personal brand, but it’s certainly not for me and not my intention in writing this blog. Bob is completely entitled to his opinion; I just strongly disagree with the way in which he chose to express it here.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this :)

  5. emilysteezy says:

    I blog anonymously also, and for the most part for the same reasons as you… I like to write about work and I want to have the liberty to not have coworkers who Google me find my blog. And it’s also to protect the privacy of others. (Although I also make sure that I never write anything that I would have a big problem with anyone and everyone I work with to read if I were ever exposed.)

    I see nothing wrong with writing under a pseudonym.

    • Thanks for sharing your thoughts as another anonymous blogger. I do really value being able to separate the personal and professional. I guess all my blog would really reveal to any colleagues or employers is how uncertain I actually am about what I’m doing, but I’d much rather share and explore this confusion privately than publicly!

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