A little guilt emerges from the inside when I post a comment on someone’s blog. An inner voice questions this action of mine. “Aren’t you going back to the same old days of commenting and engaging in long threads of discussions, putting yourself at the risk of binge commenting? You’ll go back to the days of heated social media debates, conflicting views. You quit Facebook for this very reason, will you quit WordPress too?”
Will I quit WordPress like I quit Facebook?
WordPress has been a great platform for me. Although it’s a blogging platform first, the fabulous WordPress Community acts as a social network. It’s a good parallel to the social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
I have mentioned this in the past too, I write only when my thoughts are streamlined enough to form proper sentences. I don’t post anything on impulse now, and so there’s a self-restraint when engaging in discussions. In fact, there are hardly discussions on WordPress. I won’t say there are no trolls here or no heated discussions, there may be, but it’s easy to spot them early on.
As a reader, I have this practice of knowing the person I follow. I have the choice of following onlh those bloggers with whom there’s some connection at the intellectual level. A quick glance at some of their blogs will provide you a rough sketch of their profile, the kind of people they are. You know upfront whether you’ll hit it off or not. A common interest or a common problem, these are fundamental for a community to thrive in a healthy manner.
On the other hand, the infamous social networks don’t offer this. They don’t reveal the underlying characters because what you see or read are not their best thoughts. What you read on Facebook or Twitter are impulsive reactions. And then the self-obsessed pictures create a dumb version of human existence online. You know how they look, what they wear, where they eat, whom they like, but you won’t be able to know them as a person.
While there does exist a level of anonymity in WordPress, you don’t really need to know your favourite writer’s name, because you’re here not to know about them, but to know about their thoughts. That’s the beauty of it. As an avid WordPress reader, I don’t have to know what a blogger looks like, my interaction with them is never personal.
You get to know diverse people. The more diverse things you write about, the diverse your followers are going to be. Among the people I follow, there are many a great characters. There’s a movie buff journalist, a beauty who posts beautiful things while dealing with anorexia, a couple of fighters who fight chronic diseases everyday, a Hindi speaking American-Canadian who’s into Indian movies, Indian food and cycling, there’s the one who writes creepy horror stories and the other who writes funny worry jokes, there’s the third one who writes just about what he reads or learns that day, there’s a lady who loves to share about make-up. Such diverse people, such diverse thoughts.
I didn’t learn as much from my 250 odd friends on Facebook in about 9 years.
So, no I’m not guilty and I won’t quit this place.