We've been talking about blogging here lately -- mostly how to successfully earn from your own. And that's had me thinking about blogger personalities a bit. Let's talk about it.
Your Blogger Persona
You have two basic paths you can take when it comes to blogging. You can be real or you can be fake. Sure, you could fall somewhere in between, but for the most part either you're the same person on and off your blogs or you take the "behind a screen" status to let loose and be a bit out of character.
I don't think either is really "wrong" as a whole. I'm a fan of authenticity in blogging. The Jenn you see here is the same Jenn you'd see if we were out grabbing a cup of coffee. I have my very caring and supportive side, but I also have low bullshit tolerance. If you said something ignorant or did something incredibly stupid, I'd be just as likely to tell you to your face as I am to say something of that nature on any of my blogs.
The benefit of this is that I never have to change hats. I don't have to think about what is or isn't okay to say on one site or another. If it's my site, I'll just be me. I'm too lazy to try to be someone else. But that doesn't mean it's wrong.
Some people act like there's no good excuse to be a bit different in blogging. I say fooey on them -- they're just narrow-minded. First of all there's the branding element. Just as you put on a more professional face when you go into the office where the boss is watching, some people do so online. They want to associate only a certain part of their overall image with their professional one. I don't have a problem with that. Personal prejudices and other behaviors don't always have a place. If they want to share that, cool. If not, no prob.
When it comes to people who open up a bit more on blogs, I actually find it refreshing. I believe people should be willing to speak their mind, because if you're not willing to say it then your thoughts have very little merit in my opinion. If you won't back up yourself, why should anyone else care what you think?
If blogging increases the comfort level to help people come out of their shell, even if it's to rant about something or someone, I say more power to them. (And I'm a-ok with rants about people and not just issues -- to not go into the source of the problem or to attempt to sugarcoat while letting idiocies slip by unnoticed is disingenuous and misleading to your readers. If someone truly does something wrong, I'd be ashamed if any blogger I read wouldn't be willing to call them out when appropriate -- the appropriate timing and a legitimate reason are what matter.)
That said, if they're being nasty just to be nasty, they're not taking credit for their own words, and doing so isn't a part of some brand or character they're developing online (like the former Amanda Chapel character of Strumpette.com), then they're just acting like a little snot because they can and I probably won't waste my time reading them.
So where do you fall? Are you comfortable in your own skin when you blog, or do you feel pressure to be someone else? Are you afraid to really speak your mind because you're afraid people will judge you harshly (for the record, I've always spoken my mind and have gotten more clients for it; not less)? Who are you when you blog, and why do you choose to be that blogger?