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Monday, November 24, 2008

With me or get out

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If I come to your house and disagree with you, you can at best throw me out. If I come to your website/blog and do the same, you can probably, technology permitting, ban me there. The problem is, your house is yours, but your blog is public space, unless limited to selected readership. You are owner of your blog to the extent of what to write and how to maintain and frame policies, subject to laws of civil society. Triggered by this, two things irks me about blog owners:

First, those who disallow comments on their blog. It’s like speaking aloud something in public, but closing your ears. You may not have time or interest to read comments but disallowing is just too rude frankly. It is implying that what I am saying is important but what you say I don’t care. I know that one wouldn’t listen to such speaker in real world, but many seem to read in virtual world. One of the most prominent blogger of Indian blogosphere falls in this category and there are many less famous ones who do that too. Blogs are supposed to be interactive communication and if one so absorbed in his arrogance then she should write a private journal. And his response to this comment is my second, and bigger, peeve.

Second, those who reply to disagreement with ‘If you don’t like what you are reading, why are you still here?’ Hey, I can shout and abuse you in public, but if you don’t like what you are hearing why are you still hearing and responding back it. Of course, reading blog is choice than happening to hear someone in public, though if it’s on web, much like words in the air, knowing them is inevitable and notion of choice is diffused one. And one has right to reply back if he doesn’t agree notwithstanding original intention of speaker, since words are targetted at public at large. Again, if one doesn't want people who disagree with him to read then he shouldn't write in public. As long as your blog is open, it's as much my right to read and respond.

I think it is related to domain of what is extent of blogger’s right over his blog. If it’s in public, does he still maintains rights for not hearing or throwing out others?