Monday, April 30, 2007

Women and blogs

I think a light bulb just went on here in San Jose. I was reading this article in the WaPo about women being harassed and intimidated on their blogs. This has the apparent response of pushing women out of the blogosphere. Duh!

In the past I wrote about the threats that Shakespeare's Sister had to deal with as part of the fallout with the Edwards campaign. The threats weren't just in the blogosphere but came right to her front door.

So apparently this is not an isolated incident. According to this article, women are receding from the cyber community due to these threats of rape, violence and death against not just them but also their families.

A few weeks ago I posted a diary for the first time at Kos. It was the story about my friend Julia and her eventual demise from cancer. Oh wait, I posted it here too. Anyway, I got a blistering response from somebody for talking about my friend and making the comparison to Elizabeth Edwards. Although the moral of the story was how much I hate to see women having to deal with this, well I was just wrong.

Never mind that I knew about my own experiences with my friend but it was just enough to make me realize that, yes, the blogosphere is the wild west. But I didn't have to go look there or any other site that made me uncomfortable. I could get my news in places that weren't the wild west, that people weren't insane or intimidating or um, just stupid. So I stopped going to Kos and any other site that I felt was not friendly.

Anonymity and misogyny is a very bad combination. Add the ability for threats of violence to be posted without any repercussions and I really don't want to play in that sandbox.

I will just keep writing because I like to write. A few people drop by regularly and that is great. I just want a little community where we can share a laugh and talk about hockey or something and wave to each other in passing.


Patricia said...

Good for you!

Clark said...

Though it's hard, I try to let the voices of praise and admiration carry more loudly than those voices that are derisive and ugly. I generally like to tune 'em out but not to turn 'em off.

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