The morning class of portfolio management was at 7:00 AM today and after the way Dr. Uday Damodaran had ended yesterday's interesting class in typical Ashok Kumar's Hum Log style (ab tak aapne dekha ki feasible aur efficient frontiers kya hote hain aur kal, kya hota hai optimum region...dekhenge Hum Log :-)), I couldn't have possibly missed today's class. This would logically mean that I should have gone to sleep early enough last night to be able to attend class (even in the condition of being only fitfully awake). Early enough I did sleep...at about 5 in the morning and before you start saying your prayers for the lost soul that you must think I have become, please do reserve your judgement for a while as I was not, as you might have thought (even for a while), studying.
There were more pressing matters to attend to and the top of them all was the blogosphere, specifically my own blog and that of Aditya aka Indiagenie. It all started with some innocuous (seemingly) comments on the fruitfulness (or the opposite) of putting the movie review of Anniyan on my blog. It also went on to discuss the changes that have come in Indiagenie's blog and actual deliberations on writing a term paper in the final term (in Human Resources stream, for those who are interested) on the psychology behind blogs and bloggers.
Regarding my blog (which is what I am interested in right now), while one opinion maintained that the Anniyan review was just a filler and had it been the older Mode C, either the review would not have appeared at all (for no lack of bloggable masala in my life) or even if it had, the treatment would certainly have been different from what I have been dishing out over the last few movie reviews that I have daringly (because of my incapacity to review, of course) put my hands in.
This difference, it was said, is most obvious in the increasing mention and discussion of technical aspects of the movie in my reviews and not, as earlier, of what I personally liked or disliked about the movie. In effect, I have been playing to the audience which I did not do earlier...or so was mentioned. Also, doing a review of Anniyan and neglecting a movie like Hazaaron Khwahishein Aisi that would have been normally closer to my heart and home and emotions, consequently, just goes on to show how much have I been able to change the nature of my blog. It is no longer, they say, my space but has become what others would like to read.
The blog posts, too have become of a particular type and although it was admitted that it is still difficult to predict what is going to come next, the style has become fraught with filters...filters that decide what I am going to write and what I am not, thus killing the freshness, exuberation, joy, sorrow, and the innocence that Mode C had when it was unaffected and raw. In fact, the only instances when I came close to the earlier Mode C lately, it was said, was when I put down the posts about the long face and the why not the trip (the regular readers, if any, might remember the said posts).
Though I did disagree to a lot of points that were mentioned quite particularly, right now I will not like to go into the arguments that I put forth. Rather, I just want to jot down a few pointers on what I believe most of the bloggers feel when they start a blog and sustain it through highs and lows of their lives and in the process, realize the consequences of their writings on their own and their close ones' psyche.
First off, it is naive to think that a blogger does not realize the consequence of what he/she is writing. Even when (s)he is writing something scathingly bad or excruciatingly sweet about somebody, (s)he knows what that can lead to and before writing, (s)he weighs these consequences with his/her acceptance threshold. (S)he always asks, "Is this something I can afford to put up?". The answer depends largely on the emotional state of the person at the time being. If the person has not had the realization dawn on him that the blog that (s)he is writing can touch more chords than (s)he had imagined when (s)he started the blog, the threshold will obviously be quite high and the consequences will not matter. A more mature blogger, however, will not write something similar as his/her threshold might be quite low (due to experiences, reflections et al).
This, therefore, means that the blogger has not changed any filters or applied any new ones...filters are the same old ones, re-calibrated. Once I say this, however, one logical and I would say prejudiced opinion would be that the blog posts are driven by the realization of these consequences and more often than not, consequences drive what is written and not vice-versa. I would beg to differ and though I do accept that at times, a blog does become a medium of conveying your message but all the same, there is a very thin line between trying to modify readers' perception intentionally on one hand, and expression of self on the other.
To bring this discussion to a logical conclusion, I would like to say something fitting even though I don't remember if I was able to do something like this so forcefully in the last night's discussion but then that is one of the benefits of writing a blog...unless the comments start coming, no one can dispute you. As for the blog, therefore, as a final remark, I do maintain that most of the sensitive (and sensible) bloggers (not that I claim to be one) first think on what they want to write and then look at the consequences as far as they can, in line with their emotional maturity at the point in time. It does not happen the other way around unless one is really out to gain brownie points by praising someone to the hilt or be extremely vengeful by washing someone's underwear in public.