Despite writing regularly in other fora its taken me ages to get posts up here, so here are some reflections on what that might be about:

  • Finding my voice- I came to this with quite a strong sense of my online ‘voice’. I write, tweet, post, comment etc regularly and take an active role in a number of online communities but they’re all very much in a particular world. The process of starting this writing exercise involved quite a lot of thought on my part of how I bring or translate that vocabulary into this new online space, or whether I might enjoy the exercise of not feeling like I’m tied to a particular world view or notion of myself. When I wrote the ‘about me’ page for this blog I couldn’t decide what to write. Would categorising myself- ‘educator’, ‘future Rabbi*’, ‘female’, ‘Londoner’, alter the way I presented myself here, or is understanding where I’m coming at the world from important for readers?
  • Self-curation– This is tied up with the questions I ask above. I had questions for myself about whether I wanted this to be a public or private project. A part of me liked the idea of being able to share this with my usual audience via social media etc and another part of me was attracted by the idea of anonymity. If this is unconnected to my online identity, then I feel less pressure about quality, stage of ideas etc but if it is connected then its a great chance to showcase thoughts and experiences I might not otherwise share. I’ve decided for now to do this and not share it, knowing that later I might wish to develop these ideas further and more formally, but for now enjoying having a secluded space to think aloud.
  • Information overload- There’s always so much to say and always more to read! Blogging is a very different process to essay writing but I bring to it some of the challenges of my need to master information that can stop me putting pen to paper. I find adding questions to my blogs helps me to write in a way that can present half-formed ideas, but sometimes (especially in cases like this when I’m excited by the subject matter) it is hard to stop reading and start writing!

*This point in particular looms large for me. What does becoming an accountable, quite public figure mean for the way I speak and engage online?

One thought on “reflections

  1. John says:

    Thanks for this and for the other catch up posts – the issue of identity is threaded through everythign you write as is the parallel concept of “curation”, self- curation when you think about it in the context of online spaces. I think, to answer your question posed at the end of the post: it beocmes constrained by whatever bounds it. So, in Twitter/FB and others, it’s both the medium and the message. As you become public for other reasons, in other roles, the degrees of freedom in SNS spaces are limited and bound up in the ways that your status reports are framed. Some prominent women in particular have found this to be the case whenever they let an unconstrained utterance through. They seem to get challenged (harrassed even) in a way that male users are not (well, not to the same degree). But many people are up for the challenge and taking it on… Thanks for this thought provoking post


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