I started blogging again this past week. It wasn’t a New Year’s resolution (I gave them up as a New Year’s resolution over a decade ago and I’ve stuck with it). I started blogging again because it’s necessary and important to have a voice.
We’ve gone through a cycle where many of us had voices that we owned on our own sites. Some were popular, most were not, but it still gave us a voice where we could speak freely our minds and that we could freely control. Then we all started using other people’s tools. I decided I only really needed to tweet. Several people moved their sites over to platforms that other people owned and some of those platforms are already gone. If they’re not gone, they are controlled by someone else and risk going away eventually. If you’re reading this on Medium and your only place to publicize your thoughts is on Medium, I’m talking to you. You need to control your own voice as much as you can.
This site will only go away, most likely, when I die and someone thinks to stop the auto payments to keep it running. Hopefully someone in my family will think and be technical enough to actually archive a copy of it somewhere for their own knowledge of who I was in this partial view of me that I create with these words I control. If not, no biggie. Everyone eventually dies and is either forgotten or misremembered.
Return to owning your voice
Anyway, if you used to be a blogger in the beginning of blogging, I am issuing a call to you to return. Shake off the cobwebs of silence. Dust off your old neglected site. Start having your voice again. Stop only making witty comments on Facebook or Twitter without really thinking about what you’re saying and thinking. If you’ve never had your own blog that you have run yourself, start now.
I don’t care what you’re saying. I don’t care where you broadcast it. But own it. Make sure you control it and no one else. Be your voice. Be you. Not a Twitter user, or Facebook user, or Medium writer or whatever. Be you. Prove the value of public discourse controlled by the people and not by a plethora of various tools that make it all so much easier to do. These tools use their simplicity and our natural tendency for things to be easier, they use our laziness, to control us, to control you. Resist. Do it.
Don’t worry about SEO or all the noise. Be the signal. Join in conversations with other signals. Do it.
Also published on Medium.