I think the first time I “blogged” was back in 1999, when I was 19. I had recently joined college (UNICAMP – Brazil), and found out that I could make a personal webpage. I set up a bare bones green HTML page, added a list of favorite links, and started writing short text called “rants” (the word blog did not exist back then).
At that time, I never imagined that anyone would read what I was writing, so I poured my heart out. I can’t quite remember what I wrote though. That old webpage has fallen off the web, and even the Wayback Machine only keeps caches of that page starting from 2002.
From 2004 to 2010 I started my WordPress blog, together with my life as a graduate student. Thinking about that time, there was a lot of self promotion, trying to sell my image as a “nerd” to myself, of trying to insert myself in a conversation. It looks bad when I write it like this, but it was tremendously beneficial and fun to me. I miss those blogging days.
That said, towards the later half of those years, some things started to change. As I participated in more and more communities, online and offline, my persona started to fragment. Who I was in a forum started to separate from who I was in academia, and who I was in the Blog. As I started to join Social Media, such as Twitter and Facebook, this fragmentation accelerated.
When I started working, this fragmentation reached a peak. Every time I thought about writing something, I wondered about how that would reflect in all my other personas. Not only writing, either. Who am I when I post a game to Ludum Dare? Who am I when I write on my blog? When I post on twitter? I wonder how much of this self-censure led me away from blogging. I see a video that makes me think, but is controversial. Can I post a link to it? I binge on a computer game the whole weekend, is it safe to brag about it online? Can I talk about my fears?
When I was a kid, there was a saying that I like “do not worry about what other people think about you, they are too busy worrying about what you think about them”. And yet I worry. And yet I miss being part of the conversation, even if the conversation is only between me and all the digital ghosts of the blogosphere.
I was thinking about it after watching some video talks from youtubers that I have enjoyed recently. They talked about how to separate their online persona from their private persona when talking about controversial topics. I miss talking, I miss a lot of things.
On the other hand, I have abandoned this place for so long, that I might as well be speaking into the void here (and to Antonio). This thought kinda feels me with determination.