One of the more unusual things I’ve noticed about the blogosphere is the way that discrimination disappears. The people I read, the people I link to, the people who read this blog, whatever cut I choose, everything seems to level out. Barriers to entry are low, and, despite recent blogosphere events, threats to personal space are also low. This is something enterprises strive to do, yet it happens naturally on the blogosphere. The power of volunteers.
Maybe that’s why the concept of unconferences really caught on. Not because people wanted to rebel against the establishment per se, but because the traditional conference process had the traditional discriminatory walls built in.
BTW, the kernel for this post was a comment by Hazel on a recent cricket post of mine. And here’s something I couldn’t do before, point Hazel towards a knitting blog that I’ve visited a few times, one that appears to be received well. While I’ve never met the author of the blog, we have a connection. Children at the same school. How did I find out? Conversation over dinner with other parents whom we’re close to.
So there’s something else that blogs help me do. Connect people I’ve never met with people I’ve never met.
It’s been a great week for me, a week where I could connect with old college friends while they were playing a reunion gig thousands of miles away. Yes it could have happened with snail mail or telephone, but it didn’t. It happened because of blogs. [Thanks, Chukti. It was great to be able to speak to Bertie and Fuzz, though I missed Mel].
Saw this, serendipitously, via Boing Boing:
Multiple surveys confirm that females outnumber males online in the US, with “no significant gender gap in internet usage”.
I believe Pew was signalling this anyway, but I’d be interested in seeing the statistics about gender or age or nationality and their relationships with blogs. Dave the LifeKludger has made the point of the enfrachising power of the web before, and powerfully.