Keeping It Private

Is this a growing trend among Indonesian bloggers?

I have found out that at least three of my blogbuddies have decided to restrict their blogs, which means only invited users can read them. They’re quite popular and one of them has been listed consistently on the top 100 in IndonesiaMatters. I asked two of them, and they gave me similar answers: taking a break, reflecting, attending new important thing(s) in life which need full support or concentration, etc. I found them decided to do this almost on the same week.

I have been their avid, loyal reader for months and although I rarely left comments, I visited their blogs almost everyday, literally. I am a very visual person, so I don’t subscribe to their feeds – I’d rather directly visit each blog, which I know, is rather silly and takes so much time, but I can’t help it.

Whatever their reasons to keep their blogs private, I certainly will miss them. I’ve learned a lot from them.

Talking about keeping it private, I once received an e-mail regarding the government’s decision to block Youtube and several other websites. I couldn’t remember who sent the email first, but I was delighted to be part of a more intense discussion. Naively, I thought we have formed a bond, so when I found out about webscraper, I sent the email to them to find out what they think. I believe I have found sensitive and important issues to discuss, especially because it covers two biggest thing in blogosphere: copyright and privacy. However, several of the recipients asked to be removed from the mailing list or at least not to put their emails on the Cc, because it has security and privacy implications. Ouch!

Mind you this posting is written past midnight and I have to wake up in three hours to catch an earliest flight, and just like two weeks a go when I was about to go back to Indonesia, I haven’t packed a single thing. So I wouldn’t deliver a brilliant analysis on this issue.

I just present this and would love to see what you think: Why blog but then keep it private? Don’t you need readers? Don’t you get a satisfaction knowing that your piece is read and loved by many (isn’t it one of the reasons you went blogging in the first place?)

 

Comments

  1. rimafauzi says:

    I have posted the same comment on fatih syuhud’s blog seeing as your article and his are about the same thing:

    some people take blogging too personally. when their writings are criticized they might think they are being attacked. I have heard or people who have never even met who became enemies. These are a few things that might happen in the blogging world.

    Good things happen too, like getting new friends, having your writings appreciated, honing your writing skills, getting a job or business opportunities because of your blog and so on.

    I don’t know the reason why these three women decided to quit blogging. Personally I think it’s a shame when someone has talent and a mind full of ideas and opinions but chooses to keep it to themselves. However it the personal decisions of these three women and I respect it.

    Myself, I would never stop completely or keep my blog private but that is because I am too ‘cuek’, I dont care if people stop coming to my blog, or if I am criticized or even if I get negative feedbacks or comments. I blog for myself, and unless I am too busy, I will try to maintain my blogs and update it as often as I can.

    But like Anita said, we know what we are getting into when we started blogging and putting our opinion for the world to see, and when the going gets tough, it sucks, but it’s a part of our blogging growth, so to speak.

  2. Finally Woken says:

    @Rima: ummm… I didn’t say three women. Actually at least one of them was male….:)

  3. accordingtod says:

    Yes, yes, and yes. I would think that the reason people blog, is to be heard, to get attention (aka readers), to be ‘out there’. If one chose to be a limited edition, which is their right anyway, I think it’s rather interesting. Although, one could argue that ‘I blog so my family back home would know about my recent news. I don’t need some strangers commenting about my blog. Bla bla bla”

  4. nelotte says:

    the reason for me blogging sih mostly buat share ketawa2…

    there are times yg I had to hold back a bit so my private life ga terlalu terbuka. Somehow lucu juga, sometimes when gue lagi emo, gue ngerasa what I wrote itu kok terbuka banget ya. Nulisnya yg emo2 gitu deh. But someone commented, its gud coz it shows that I’m still human, still have struggles. And another reader commented that my blog is an honest blog and bless them banget. Meskipun lebih banyak kocak2nya. πŸ˜›

    Tapi lucu juga, coz when some readers ask for my friendster, gue ga bisa kasih, coz I still want to keep that part of my life private.. Somehow kok ga make sense juga hAUEhuAHEuAHEe tau deh..

    gue pernah mikir sih to write some postings with password access buat orang2 tertentu doank.. cuma cant be bothered hehehe.. *alias males*

  5. Andie Summerkiss says:

    Sometimes to be heard too much and too loud can be overwhelming to some people. That could be the reason.

  6. rimafauzi says:

    nit, about the three women bit, i read that on fatih syuhud’s blog. like i said, the reply here and there that i wrote are the same..

    but in your case, one of them is a guy! mm.. curious.. but i think i know who it is.. lol

    anyway like andie said, maybe for some people being heard too much is overwhelming to some. not me though, im your friendly neighborhood attention whore. lol

  7. Decided to check Fatih’s blog about bloggers who quit, before I made any comments.

    That’s a really funny post he made, btw. Just because there were 3 women who quit blogging then all of a sudden it was all “Why women? It’s a phenomenon!!”

    Jeez…

    People (men, women and trannies)quit blogging all the time – it’s their decision, we shouldn’t really make a big deal out of it, let’s just take the positivity out of it – perhaps they really are busy and they didn’t get what they’d expected from blogging.

    I myself had made new friends from blogging – including meeting a wonderful person like Anita, and I blog to speak out my personal opinion so that it can be heard my others out there who might feel the same way like I do.

    Blogging makes me learn new things everyday – I learn from other’s experiences and knowledge, and live my life a lot more meaningful knowing that there are people out there who are just like me.

    Coincidentally, I was going to write a new post about the same topic but I’m not so sure now … πŸ˜›

  8. Rob Baiton says:

    To each their own…

    Blogging is a personal thing to start with and if you can choose the time when you start you can also choose the time you want to call it quits.

    The gender thing is overplayed and anecdotal at best.

    Blogging can eat up a lot of time and if it is not paying the bills then it is understandable that you might want to pull back from it and focus on other things.

    Personally, I never started to blog for the purposes of fame or fortune. If people read me then good for them! I hope I entertain them, annoy them, and piss them off either at separate times or all at once πŸ˜€

    You cannot convince all of the people all of the time and sometimes people call you out and also write nasty things about you. Such is life, and to a greater degree this is part and parcel of the territory that we inhabit in the blogosphere.

    Rima…

    You are too “cuek”? Really? I don’t believe you :)))

    It is partly cuek and I think it is also partly that you blog as much for yourself as you do for others.

  9. rimafauzi says:

    @rob:

    I am cuek in the sense of that I dont really care what people think about me or my blog. I do care what people close to me think, but even then, not too much.

    With me, what you see is what you get. I’m loud, opinionated and sometimes curse and write using language only truck drivers use, but that’s a part of my charms.. πŸ˜‰

    Plus, I dont get personal, I wont get into fights with someone in the blogosphere, and people can give me negative feedbacks or ciritcism, and I will still think I’m awesome.. lol

    If I stop blogging, it’ll probably be because I’m too busy or bored doing so.

  10. Finally Woken says:

    Hello people.
    My posting is slightly different from Fatih’s. He was talking about those who quit blogging, but I was talking about those who decide to keep blogging – but only to selected readers. This is why I’m confused. They still write, but the limit their readers. Let’s say from 100 a day from all over the world, to only a handful family members.

    I personally DO have a restricted blog, but that’s because I have set it up in the beginning for specific readers, specific time, and the blog contains too much personal information (like dates and address). But I can’t imagine myself having this blog restricted. I feel like I ‘reject’ my readers.

    What do you think?

  11. Rob Baiton says:

    FW…

    I think you answered your own question…I guess it depends on what the purpose of your blog is.

    Maybe people restrict access for the same reason you did. Maybe over time a general blog becomes more personal and you then decide that you want to write only for certain people…

    I am with Rima in the sense that I too fall into the cuek category. I care but not too much about what people think. My folks instilled in me a great sense of self-belief and an ability to argue for hours. I will either win because I am right or I will win because I will be the last one standing.

    I tend not to wanna get involved in the fighting (or in this case the to and fro) but sometimes you still have to draw lines in the sand when people say really offensive or narrow-minded things.

    Simple — I cannot see a reason to save my readers from my vanity. So my blog will not be restricted to certain people. Anyway, I believe that if you do not like what you see or what I write then don’t visit πŸ˜€

  12. Rob is right!

    Anita, I can’t imagine what it will be like if your blog is restricted – the reason why I become regular visitor is because the contents make me think and I learn so much from your experiences, it’s a shame not to share them to the world.

    And also, it’s nice to know there are people out there who feel the same way like I do!

  13. Marisa Duma says:

    Because bloggers juga manusia. πŸ˜›

  14. Finally Woken says:

    @Rob: love your answer. I’m seeing it from a reader’s point of view. Let’s say I’m a regular visitor to one particular blog, and the next day I find out I can’t visit it anymore because it’s for restricted readers. I will feel… annoyed.

    @Therry: I’m a “banci tampil”, so will never think about having this blog restricted *wink.

  15. rimafauzi says:

    @anita: girl, you and I are the same, banci tampil a.k.a attention whore!

  16. Wind Mill says:

    Interesting article. Interesting comment views too.

    BLogs have become so multi-faceted by theme, content and purpose but that’s what essentially has brought it to where it is now and who know where to next?

    However, from the short experience that I have had with blogging, I could add that there are uncountable “sick” people out there who themselves have migrated from iRC, forums and Messengers to BLogs without shedding their despicable old habits.

    One of this article commentators mentioned that it takes dedicated hours to maintain a BLog. I might add that it also takes a substantial amount of time to clean up a BLog that has been bashed by spammers, bashers and the nebulous anonymous up-to-no-good.

    Hence, in light of the above, keeping it private does have a sanity of its own merit even though it works against the Blog owner and it reduces the overall site visitors.

  17. Mulia Nurhasan says:

    wow, i am amazed with the link u gave on top 100 blogs from IM. thanks, i never paid attention to this before. and congrats, u are included!

    mba, if i make u upset with my closing down, kindly apologize. as i said in my last post, u are one of the person i have learned a lot from and i thank u.

    i also said, i could have said something sounds real as a reason, because of this or that. but the truth is, i just feel like it. it’s just what my heart say and what i want to do.

    many of decision i have made in life are based on no rational reason, instead, just because my heart says so. this thingie with blogging is the same; because my heart says so.

    but i do understand if people, including u, wouldn’t understand me. i have tried to put my feet on ur shoes. but i must walk on life using my own shoes.

    best,
    Big M :)

  18. Jakartass says:

    I’m echoing a few thoughts here.

    I originally started blogging to keep friends and family in touch with me and, I suppose, vice versa. If I’d wanted my thoughts to remain ‘within family’, then I would have really appreciated the possibility of keeping it private. I can also see this facility also being very useful in e-learning, e.g. a class writing assignment.

    But I also wanted to hone my writing skills and seemingly I’ve succeeded as, thanks to my readership, I’m beginning to get paid for some of it. However, I can never work out why certain articles, usually those I’ve dashed off rather than those I’ve painstakingly produced, attract the most comments. But no matter; as several say here, we mostly write for ourselves.

    The aspect I suspect pains you the most, Anita, is that we build up social networks through our blogrolls and comment facilities; suddenly being left out of a social circle can hurt. However, life moves on and, as you’ve said a couple of times, Anita, Certain Friendships Don’t Last Forever.

    As for folk asking to be removed from the ‘mailing list’, I would also stress the need to use Bcc, rather than ‘To’ or ‘Cc’. Not only does this decrease the kbs, but, as has been said, there are security concerns, and not just the annoyance of being spammed. None of us need sneaky trojans worming their way into our systems.

    Note that I haven’t asked to be removed from your list; just mail me with discretion as well as your usual TLC.

    πŸ˜‰

  19. Finally Woken says:

    @Rima: attention whore*lol. Love the jargon!

    @Windmill: I don’t know, maybe I’m fortunate to not having those sick people intruding my blog. One or two spammers but 99% are genuine, although a few of them say something nasty. Lucky I’m like Rima, I don’t really care about what people think about me because I know who I am.

    @Mulia: no dear you don’t upset me. I was just wondering why it happened at the same time as others. It’s your blog and you could do whatever you want to. But again I try to understand your point of view, which probably quite unsuccessfully since I’m a banci tampil hehehehe….

    @Jakartass: spot on. I’ve learned from the e-mail’s CC & BCC netiquette, and I’d certainly be more discreet with others’ email addressess. I know we have a special bond! :)

  20. JennieSBev.com says:

    Well, a blog is just an avenue to express ourselves. We can do whatever and however we want with it. It is a branding tool for businesspeople and an activism tool for activists.

    I’m both, so I use it for both benefits.

    Many world-class bloggers, for instance, don’t accept comments, like Seth Godin, etc. They have reasons for that. And others prefer to have private blogs, which is OK too.

    I used to blog as a way to give back to Indonesia (with my Indo blog), but later it turned out not as good as I had hoped for. I received threats from some groups due to my political perspectives on certain things, no matter how “soft” I try to convey my messages.

    I am, after all, a professional writer, so I can’t be too “touchy feely” with analyses.

    So, a blog is just a blog, which can be an extension of ourselves. But just take it like a notepad. A place to take notes and it doesn’t define who we are.

    Much love,
    Jen

  21. Finally Woken says:

    Cik Jen (sorry, I know you told me not to call you that, but I can’t help it, lol), you always amaze me. There are many layers from your comment and I let the readers to interpret it by themselves.

    You’re right, blog doesn’t define who we are, although there are people who take it too seriously and cannot separate it from reality.

    Hope you enjoy your summer holiday!

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