media girl [http://www.mediagirl.org
USAHow did you start blogging? Why do you keep at it?
I discovered blogging in 2001, kind of late considering I was trying to do online journaling through manual website updates for a few years before that. I fell into Xanga and loved it for a while, but then started to feel a bit bored with the whole gated community feel of it. When I moved, got divorced and changed jobs, the blogging world all seemed so irrelevant to my life that I dropped out for a while.
But there's something about blogging that is almost addicting. A lot of work in my industry (media) is about finding the means to produce and publish, and here blogging solves those problems right off, leaving you free to just create. My blogs have been my sketch pads, my whiny journals and my soapboxes.
This year I got back into blogging on Blogspot [http://mediagirltunesin.blogspot.com
], where I found an outlet for my pent-up passions, frustrations and amusements during the presidential election. It was sometime during that when I began to explore the various content management systems out there to design and administer dynamic websites. I was initially investigating more with respect to my business, but soon realized that many of these systems were perfect for blogging ... and that blogging was one potentially powerful way to begin to build a community.
Now we're as a society experiencing a revolution in information, where we as citizens are able to communicate and share very actively and dynamically with each other, while not being so dependent upon the centralized non-interactive media from corporations and governments (television, newspapers, radio), and I see it as something of a responsibility as a citizen of this planet to remain engaged.
All that is to say that not only do I love blogging, but I think blogging as a whole serves a useful purpose in the growth and development of our democratic republic, as well as the building of a global community of people.
What are your most important issues?
You mean, aside from obsessing over my weight? One thing that has gotten me stirred up lately has been the growing tension I see between the rise of the radical pseudo-Christian right and the continuing apathy regarding feminist issues. I'm particularly disturbed by the trend we've seen where "feminism" (by any name) is considered an outdated concept. There's a lot more to feminism than obtaining equal rights. There are subtle characteristics which permeate our culture that work against the obtaining not only equality under the law but equality in practice. One of these things is that dragon that so many seem unable or unwilling to see, male privilege. The black-and-white (or red-and-blue) nature of political discourse today tends to place feminism into some radical corner of liberalism. But we're not talking about malicious oppression (though that does happen), but about unexamined assumptions and attitudes that tend to place women in positions subservient to men.
I also get worked up over the attempts at destroying our secular republic. I see the radical right taking "Christianity" into a twisted perversion of the faith and teachings I learned as a child, turning the virtues advocated by Jesus in the New Testament on their head, making them into sins, while embracing values that do not reflect traditional Christian values, let alone generally held concepts of human rights. What I see in their attempts to establish a theocracy in this country is the danger of the corruption or utter destruction of the American republic and the rise of a mean-spirited, imperialist empire that would make our current 800-pound gorilla-like presence in the world seem like a kitten by comparison.What’s the nicest recognition you’ve ever received from the media and/or the blogosphere?
I don't think the media really understands the blogosphere, let alone the true potential of the interent and interactive communication. I've received some kind notices from reviewers on work I've done in the past in the more traditional media, and that was nice. In the blogosphere, I've been thrilled by the links to mediagirl.org by some very smart and eloquent women out there. The biggest recognition is that people are visiting and reading and responding and returning for more. What else could I ask for?Who is your audience? What is unique about your blog?
Our audience is anyone who's interested in feminism, media and/or progressive politics. I don't know that we're particularly unique, except that we have different contributors than other blogs have. One of our contributors, Matsu, does political tarot readings, though, and I don't think anyone else is doing that. She's received some very nice responses to those posts.
We're looking to expand the functionality of the site all the time, and draw heavily and gratefully upon the open source/GNU community for tools to make interaction easier and more exciting.Most frustrating aspect of blogging?
The blogging interface is still very cumbersome. The WYSIWYG editors out there don't work in all browser windows, so you end up having to do a lot of hand coding. You're limited by typing and by a small, flat screen. We experience and understand the world in four dimensions -- three dimensions through time -- and yet we have to funnel all of our communication through this little straw. Yet I don't know if I'd call this a "frustration" so much as the area where we can and will see much improvement. We're just beginning the journey into this kind of communication. 10 years from now, we won't even recognize the "blogosphere."
I guess my personal frustration is just not having enough time and energy in the day to do all I want. It's like I've been waiting for this opportunity all of my life, and now suddenly days are too short, weeks go by too fast, and vacations seem like something for the next decade.What’s the one point you’d like a reader to take away from your blog- the one thing for them to really “get”.
There's a lot of crap in this world, and it's easy to get all worked up over this and that. The key to deal with this, I believe, is by being proactive and reframing the challenges. It's important to criticize, but also to visualize and create new things, new paradigms. It's also important to laugh, and be able to laugh at ourselves. (I know, this ponderous, serious set of responses hardly reflect a sense of humor. What can I say? I'm entitled to my moods!)Quote:
"With our thoughts, we make the world." -Buddha