When I was introduced to blogging some five years ago in a media class, I spent a lot of time surfing other people's blogs. I was lucky to have others guide me to where the best blogs can be found. Through those guides and reading famous blogs, good blogs, bad blogs, I discovered different kinds of pitfalls of blogging and learnt what to expect, what not to expect. My few blog companions guided me to understand certain laws of media and we had a great time witnesssing the blogosphere bloom to its highest ideal in the political campaign of Howard Dean.
As all things that go up, they eventually settle down, as did that first generation of quality blogs. When a few journalists and famous bloggers were dramatically exposed as liars, blogging became just another quirky mode of expression as the internet moved on to exploring other forms of connectivity.
Occasionally checking in on the emerging Thai blogosphere, I was reluctant to join in any group because they seemed to be dominated by certain identities and technical structures that were limiting for a true free or equal expression of personal thoughts. However, out there in the wider blogosphere it was difficult to find fellow bloggers who shared similar focus or interests and it was getting boring just talking to myself. Usually when there was some kind of crisis going on I would feel more strongly the need to join in some conversation in trying to make sense out of the world, so that was what brought me to this space here. Now I'm starting to have some doubts.
I don't know if it's too much to hope that the Nationa Weblog will move towards a kind of space for grassroot "journalism" to develop as it did with the Jordanians or the Koreans. Even a lesser ideal of simply becoming a space where people will have diverse and entertaining expressions over a variety of topics would be an encouragement to keep blogging. Maybe, I'm too "new" in this space and expect too much, but I cannot help but worry when I see development of flamingfueds that just simply bring down the quality of any forum. One was recently started around the question of identity, an Achilles' heel of this narcissistic media form.
Here's a bit of my say about identity, (through the luxury allowed by this form of other people's words):
On the blogging identity:
Something about identity and transparency:
An entertaining "Pop Psychological Look at Blogger Identity":
In the general interest of having a geniunely interesting blogging space, would I be too naive to plead with my fellow bloggers here to let's be constructive and avoid falling into these degrading pitfalls and waste of blogspace?