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What is the point of writing diaries on ET?

by njh Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 01:15:50 PM EST

Do we expect to foment change?  Get high on outrage?  Present ourselves as smart?  Answer important rhetorical questions?


And should we always start the title with "What is the point of x?"?

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I recently stated on ET that I comment and vent steam here in order to prevent me putting a brick through the telly.

Writing diaries is, for those capable of sustaining a greater narrative and a more subtle argument, probably performs a similar task. That of venting an idea which nags at you and seeing if anyone feels it has worth.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 01:54:16 PM EST
Why should there be a point to writing diaries?

People are motivated by different things. It's up to the readers and commenters to decide if they find the result interesting, satisfying.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 01:58:12 PM EST
The information, arguments, opinions, and social enjoyment I have received through diaries and their commentaries have been behaviour-changing - for myself. And these have definitely improved my work capabilitities as well as shifting my position in the Overton window.

Plus, quite a few of these diaries raise issues months, if not years, before the tradmed picks up on them. That especially I have found important. But do we influence anything? If we count all of our personal networks together, the contact reach is probably tens of thousands. OK - that may not seem much, but a lot of our personal contacts are more opinion-forming than Joe Schmoe.

Your question is perhaps better understood as: What is the motivation for diarists? It's work to write a diary, but marshaling one's material is always instructive. And the crucial aspect is the reaction to a diary. In several sectors we have skilled professionals. Their comments are invaluable.

A couple of years ago I wrote diaries more frequently. But being on the artsy-fartsy side, some diaries had little traction. I'm happy to read stuff everyday, and in return I want to give something back.

I guess, like the economy, it's all based on confidence and trust.

Lastly - I'm a professional B2B writer - among other things. It's a somewhat ascetic trade. At ET I take pleasure in writing.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 04:50:34 PM EST
In the right mood, the act of placing a simple full stop . can be invigorating. Or as some will have it: a period. (period)

I wish more of my voiceover clients wanted carnal relations with full stops. I know they are engineers and revel in the hierarchical nature of holons (which they isolate by commas), and the 'take a deep breath' cascade of sub-clauses, but a lifetime of getting the Lee Marvin school of voice talent has left me short of breath. Go Hemingway, I tell them.

But no. Scripts circulate endlessly in organizations. They are written. The corrections are written. At no point does anyone read the script aloud and realize how stupid it sounds. "Hemingway stays in the cabbage", to paraphrase a Finnish expression: cabbage being brain. As I am fond of pointing out: speaking as a lawyer is guaranteed to ensure your message goes in one ear and out the other. You can show how clever you are, or communicate.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 05:04:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Why do I write comments (and the occasional diary) on ET?

Because I like to read ET: over the years I have learned a lot of things, been exposed to fascinating insights from fellow contributors who hail from so many countries even beyond ol' Europe...

And like a potluck dinner, you bring your own little contribution. And a funny thing happens on the way to the diary: whatever you bring to the community, you get it back in ten-folds.

And if that's not a perfect example of Keynesian multiplier, I shall eat my keyboard  :-)

by Bernard on Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 04:58:39 PM EST
Excellent!

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 05:11:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
to pass time serenely and pleasantly?

i assume so, as diaries here are interesting and provoke me to look deeper into events and how they connect.

European Tribune - Comments - What is the point of writing diaries on ET?

Do we expect to foment change?

foment, i don't know, but maybe learn to dance with it better!

change happens, fomented or not. seems most of the trick to living well consists of getting out of the way of change you don't want to happen, and helping nudge what you do if you can.

commenting is more my bag, but there are always fascinating diaries to groove on, and the salons and OT's fill it all out nicely.

a nice info-salad with a tangy dressing of wit, what's not to love?

helen said it best, perhaps!

"We can all be prosperous but we can't all be rich." Ian Welsh

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Jan 9th, 2013 at 05:32:49 PM EST
(long time sniper from the sidelines, never a writer)

At best: find someone who knows how to change things, or can suggest a way.

Likely/possible: see a way there is some slight hope.

At worst: (Tom Lehrer) "titillating the initiated". Realising there are other people who think the same way. A bit like war games or chess club, I guess.

The "at worst" ain't too bad.


-----
sapere aude

by Number 6 on Thu Jan 10th, 2013 at 05:52:33 AM EST
prodesse et delectare.

more delectare for me, but so what?

by IM on Thu Jan 10th, 2013 at 05:55:59 AM EST
Historians will ask questions like:

  1. What were the factors leading to the end of the US Empire?

  2. Why did the dominant sentient earth species not stop the destruction of its biosphere?

  3. What leads to the mental illness called religion in a mortal species?

  4. How do we forestall similar mistakes in other species?

ET is an excellent resource for the future. Keep writing. Plenty of Ph.D theses here.

The good news ... it's only a life sentence. You eventually leave this planet of idiots.
by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Sat Jan 12th, 2013 at 07:47:59 AM EST
See? You can be excitingly succinct! ;-)

I hope this is the launch of THE Twank 2.01 (beta)

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Sat Jan 12th, 2013 at 08:33:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
THE Twank 2.01 (beta)

Do you know what bêta means in French ?

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet

by Melanchthon on Sun Jan 13th, 2013 at 11:20:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I do now. ;-)

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Sun Jan 13th, 2013 at 02:21:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well I don't.

The good news ... it's only a life sentence. You eventually leave this planet of idiots.
by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Mon Jan 14th, 2013 at 08:40:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I think it comes after alfalfa?
by njh on Fri Jan 18th, 2013 at 12:09:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think it's rather obvious that, ET being the most ideologically influential news and discussion source in the entire world, that every diary written here has an immense effect on the opinions and narratives of the day.  

As such, every word we write CHANGES THE WORLD!(Throw fist in the air) We are the vanguard! (Jump up on barricade, yelling.) We are leading the people to a better tomorrow! (Wave flag back and forth)  We . . . um . . . oh yeah.  Right.  Um . . . that's all, I guess.

by Zwackus on Mon Jan 21st, 2013 at 07:37:01 PM EST
I'm sold!
by njh on Sat Jan 26th, 2013 at 03:12:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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