Thursday, June 23, 2011

Privacy vs. the Blog!

It is so easy when blogging to share.  You can write whatever you want and if you turn off your comments, you'll never have to hear anything about it!

But with great power comes great responsibility (this is a line from a movie ... can someone comment and tell me which one? I seriously have no idea...).

What do I mean by that?

Well, when you blog, just how honest are you?  Are there certain topics that are off limits?  Do you use full names?  Or just first? Or letters? Or made up names?  Do you post pictures? Or do you consider that too personal?

I've come to realize everyone has their own style.  Some people are very open while others are very secretive.

When I first started blogging (you know, a whole FOUR months ago lol) I only really read Beth's blog.  So I kinda used her example.  But morphed it a bit.

You see, my actual, real, legit first name is somewhat unique.  And I don't want anyone to find me! (Shhh, I'm hiding.) So I had to come up with a name. I could explain where Sara comes from, but that's unlikely to happen in the near future.

Now as for D, his name actually starts with the letter D.  Whenever possible, I do use the first letter of someone's name.  But, sometimes it's too confusing.  So sometimes I pick another letter.  Don't hate me.

But what about topics?  This is especially timely because JUST LAST NIGHT, I found myself in a conversation about sex toys that I did not start.  (Here's lookin' at you, Kim and you, Rusti.)  Now the conversation itself didn't upset/worry/bother me. (And since I know you are just DYING to know ... no, D and I do not and have not ever owned nor used the sex toy they were discussing!)

But, D had a stricken look on his face.  He was suddenly fearful that "once you put something on the internet, that's it."  It's there and there is NO going back!

This doesn't worry me quite as much.

Plus, I'm 99% anonymous.  A few people know who I really am and only a FEW (as in 3) that I know in real life know that I blog.  And one is my husband.  I'm not too worried.

But even though I am anonymous, I'm not naive.  I fully imagine one day I will open up my blog and tell my family about it.  And when that day comes, I don't want to risk them going back through my entries and discovering something.  (Basically, if my mom and MIL were to read this post tomorrow, would it be ok? If the answer is yes, the post can go up!)

So family (with the exception of memories and good/funny stories) is off the table.

I also don't discuss coworkers (good technique, make sure one of the THREE people you know in real life is a coworker! It helps keep you honest!), friends, or my husband.  Again, except for memories/funny stories.  If I mention a person who was in my life previously, I have to be certain of two things: (a) they will never ever ever read my blog and/or (b) even if they did, I would not care if they did realize I was talking about them.  If you can pass BOTH of these two tests, the story goes in.

I also keep a lot of my private life, private.  At first I didn't even say what state I lived in.  That changed.  But I haven't talked about my work except in mostly abstract terms.  And that's intentional.

This invisible line between what is allowed and what isn't will only get worse once I get pregnant and/or have a kid.

What are your rules regarding privacy on your blog??

Mama’s Losin’ It 

This was written in response to the prompt:What are your thoughts on blogging and privacy...where do you draw the line?


  1. I don't use my son's real name or the actual city where we live. We do live in a large, heavily populated military region, so I don't hide that. Chris & I don't use our full names and I fuzz out certain patches on his uniform(s). I always post navy-related information post-event & never anything that is classified like deployment dates, countdowns, etc (OPSEC).

    Posting negative stuff about other people is not my thing, so I don't complain about frenemies, etc. If I'm annoyed with Chris about something, I get his permission before I blog about it lol.

  2. 1 - the movie line is from Spiderman

    2 - I use varying levels of privacy inducing things...I don't give away my actual locale, I use initials, fake names, the like, generalize some terms, or use a descriptive term, such as 'someone' or 'certain persons' etc to describe some folks that would be clear to me, the story teller, but not clear to general audiences. Of course I've also been victim to such 'certain persons' knowing about my blog/finding my blog/hunting it down and then they blast away on my blog in the form of comments and for that I can't be responsible for their actions & have taken it upon myself, at times to take their personal callings out on a new level...or just ignore them & laugh at them behind their backs. Childish of me, perhaps, but they put it out there, so who am I to refrain from my own retellings?

  3. Oh, and I always make sure that anything I post my husband approves of my blogging about it.

  4. You can't be too careful these days, that's for sure. I enjoyed reading your post. I'm visiting from Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop.

    Have a great night!

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. I have no idea what discussion nor sex toy you are referring to.

    HA! Okay, that was a complete lie :) and I'm not afraid to admit it :) As far as my blog/twitter goes - I use my own real first name, I don't use Goose or Hubs' names, I don't directly SAY where we live, although if you follow along in twitter enough you could probably take a decent guess at the area... I have a few pics here & there on my blog (none of Hubs though) and of course Goose is all over in my twitpics... I've been blogging for 5 years, started shortly after Hubs became a cop... and I've never had any problems... anything I was afraid of people finding either never got posted, or was limited to a private blog with a select group of readers (pretty much an antique now) Anything I post now is stuff that I would talk about with anyone... I do tweet a little more personal/grumpy info than I post on my blog, as I feel it's slightly less easy to find in the twitterverse than in my blog, and I use twitter as having conversations, I say what I'm thinking and feeling, but still - nothing I wouldn't say in person. :)

    oh - and I don't run things by Hubs, as 1 - he could care less, and 2 - he is NOT a fan of social media... no FB, Twitter, Blogs - NOTHING for him, he barely checks his email... and again - nothing I wouldn't say (to him or anyone else) in person :) I may discuss sex toys, but I'm not going to tell you the details of our actual sex life - not on my blog anyway ;) and 3 - my blog is MY space to talk about my thoughts & feelings... I suppose if I were to blog about something that I think Hubs might have an issue with I'd run it by him first, but so far, haven't had any of those :)

  7. *I* was involved in a sex toy conversation?!? No way.

    Okay, I'm lying. Of course I was! There's not much that I won't talk about!

    I don't blog privately. I use our first names and I have mentioned the area where we live. I have thought about using different names, but that's because I didn't want my oldest son's father to find my site and use something against me. Then I realized that was silly because I have nothing to hide. I have blogged about him and the situation, but everything I've said was true and is documented in our court papers. So, I have nothing I need to hide.

    As for topics? I blog what I want to. I don't run anything by anybody else. Then again, I don't have anything that would offend someone either. I know when to keep certain things private and obviously wouldn't put something on the internet that I know shouldn't be out there.

    But to our names? I use our real names. I think it gives the reader a chance to relate to the story better, to be able to identify. And pictures? Yeah, they're all over my site too :)

  8. I've been blogging about as long as you. I started out being more guarded then it was all people who know me reading. So, I loosened up. Then I started linking to different places and pulled in the reigns again...a little.


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