Saturday, 30 May 2009

Why do we read blogs?

Lots of people write the occasional posting to justify why they write their blogs. Not that they need a justification. If we enjoy writing blogs why not admit we do it simply for that reason?

But why do we read blogs? I suspect that one of the reasons (among many) is to see how similar are our thoughts and actions wherever in the world we may live. I delight in finding that someone has not cleaned behind their cooker fir three years. On the other hand, if you are obsessively keen to wheel it out and clean behind it every week you probably read different blogs and find fellow enthusiasts.

So much of our history and so many jingoistic people endeavour to tell us how different (and usually superior) we are to folk in other countries. It is as though this divisiveness has been a satisfactory excuse for fighting, trade wars and attempts ro wipe out those of other religions or points of view.

Never before have we had the opportunity to learn about the day to day lives of the ordinary people in other countries. Not the celebrities or the politicians but folk who do the day to day work and keep the wheels of the world turning. I find it great that I can visit the blog of a Mum of three in Utah, a teacher in California or a librarian in Australia and discover they have similar thoughts and similar day to day actions to my own.

Another reason for reading people's blogs came to mind when I read DeeDee's yesterday. She had told the story of festivities at Providence, Rhode Island. Where else would I have ever known about what went on in a city on the other side of the world. Our international news only tells of murders, political scandals, war and famine (and even the latter rarely makes it to our screens since it is much better to brush it under the carpet and pretend it doesn't exist.) When people use their blogs to tell about the beauty and the art and the cultural events in their small area it once again shows us how much good there is in the world.

A further motive for reading blogs is that so many of them make me smile. In a world with so much pain and grief it never ceases to amaze me how folk suffering adversity of one form or another can nevertheless treat it with humour. I haven't been able to find the origin of the saying "You've got to laugh", but it seems to me that my fellow bloggers have got the art off to a T. Many is the morning that I have not felt 100% but have been cheered by reading the antics of a fellow blogger. They either make me realise that there are those worse off than me or give me a giggle by allowing the world to laugh with them rather than at them. The day seems better after that.

Never before have we been able to appreciate that despite differences of culture, religion, economic situation or climate a lot of us are very much alike in how we view the world.

Douglas Adams reckoned the answer to question 'What is the meaning of life ?' was 42. I reckon it could be blogging!


  1. You are absolutely "right on", brother! It's like a whole world opened up and presented itself in my lttle room. Yours always makes me smile, or think about how similar we are, and how we all struggle in one way or another.
    I appreciate you.

  2. And I appreciate you and your comments - thanks, Shabby Girl.

  3. I have to thoroughly agree with your findings. I too think it is so amazing that I can read every morning, what bloggers all around the world are feeling, thinking, seeing, and share this little bit of their lives they choose to share. Every time the weather map comes up on the news, in an evening, I look at Stornoway, up there in Scotland, and think, CJ is up there what weather is he having?
    Now, being the uneducated southern dweller, I didn't even know the exact location, except it was in Scotland.
    So, no more need be said!
    Love Granny

  4. Well said my friend. This week I was talking with some fellow teachers about blogging. They don't get it, but we do.

    Not only do we meet like-minded folk from around the world, we discover what we think, what matters to us, and who matters. (We even meet those who don't think like us. And that's fun too.)

    I enjoy your blog, you, and this post! Thanks for being a wonderful co-blogger!


  5. Yep, Brother (he realy is!) thank you for introducng me to a whole new world.

    I think you are correct about following like-minded people. I don't often stray from the few blogs that I follow but once I strayed (via a blogger on your site) into contentious, angry territory and have never been back. I don't want to be part of that contention. But perhaps that narrows my sphere of learning. But then if I read The Telegraph presumably I'd widen my sphere of learning too but I'm just not up to that either. (Sorry, folks, that's a UK joke).

  6. I read blogs because it makes me feel closer to people; it comforts me at times to know I'm not alone in how I'm feeling...and because I'm basically NOSEY!

  7. S.S.
    You've captured some great reasons and feelings for blogging in a beautiful way. I agree, wholeheartedly. A few months back, I had no idea what was in store for me when I ventured into blog-dom. It has been an amazing experience and has colored my world in a most rewarding way. You were the first person that I added after Aubrey, and (I think) the first one to "follow" me, after her. Every person that I follow now and every one that follows me, came through you and Aubrey! Thank you! I don't think I will ever be the same! (And that's a good thing...) :^) :^) ;^)

  8. so well said my friend! that is the reason I blog and read blogs. The world is really a small wonder and the people in it....most of them are good wonderful people! Thanks once again for sharing, keep it up my friend!


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