(caveat: I don't get any sleep at night so forgive any typos)
I think one of the reasons I've been away from the blog for so long is I'm tired of the Internet telling me what to do. For instance, I received an email from LinkedIn whilst on vacation, telling me that my profile photo was deleted because it violated their Terms of Service. Apparently, you can only post a picture of yourself. My photo was of my chattering teeth trademark that frankly, more people recognize about me than my actual face. LinkedIn decided what was best for me.
Likewise, Facebook. I abhor Facebook and will not resign myself to joining. When you're the most enduring female blogger in the United States (going strong in one form or another since 1995), Facebook is unnecessary. If I want to know what my friends' “status” is, I'll call them or read their blogs. If people from my past want to find me, they just have to google my name — whether firstname-maidenname or firstname-maidenname-lastname, I show up multiple times in the first page of Google results (and then there are a bunch of links to “Ice Castles”, which truly could not make me happier). But my best guy friend (the one I'm not married to), joined Facebook and now I'm getting emails that say things like “Jim Marbury added you as a friend on Facebook.” Which is fine, because I haven't spoken with Jim in many years and it would be great to hear from him, BUT, how can he add me as a friend when I DON'T HAVE A FACEBOOK PAGE? Moreover, what right does Facebook have to 1) email me when I am not their client, and 2) extort membership from me (if I want to get in touch with Jim, or see his message, I have to sign up at facebook.com). Not to mention the fact that some of the greatest minds of our generation (and of my group of friends) are spending more time on Facebook collecting “friends” than on writing new poems, creating new artwork, reading new books, etc. Is this a good thing? I don't see how. The popularity contest of the new millennium has us all reverting back to junior-high; keeping tabs on people we didn't really like in the first place, to try to inflate our own sagging self-esteem. And yet, the acting chair of the business school at the college where I'll resume work next week wants me to teach Facebook in my Writing for the Media class. Gag me with a status update, please.
And yes, this is even spilling over in to work. iContact suspended my account. Again, the company didn't listen to me, just decided what was best and threw a brick wall in front of my face, hindering my income potential at Christmas-time (can't call people in reference to an email you just sent them if the email service won't let you send an email).
Finally, and this is hard to say, I'm even becoming disillusioned with this blog. I no longer feel like I can say anything on it — too many other personalities in my life could be pissed off or hurt by it — and if I can't say everything, it's hard for me to say anything.
I think this is all boiling down to the dumbassification of America (thank you Chuck D), which I expect to be outlining in future posts.
So, where do I go from here? I'm thinking that this might be becoming a Not Safe For Work site. I'm excited by the changes made at BSUWG (see blogroll) and think that Jim is putting forth an interesting model for Blogosphere 3.0.
And maybe then I'll take a quick break from my five jobs in order to catch 30 minutes of sleep. Good night and good luck.