Prejudices & Preconceptions Revisited

Several days ago we discussed the issues around bloggers' nationalities. This time we're going to go a little deeper.

 

Today we are going to talk about the less obvious prejudices and preconceptions. The ones we keep hidden and rarely admit to, even to ourselves.

 

I had originally planned to break this down into several posts about nationality, gender, sexual orientation and race. As I'm writing this it occurs to me we could expand it to include religious and or political affiliation.

 

I started with nationality because, in the blogosphere, it is the most difficult to disguise. All of the others could easily go unnoticed with only a cursory examination of a blog.

 

I determined that to cover all of the topics I would have to write the same post over and over with the same content, only substituting terms and since everyone has their own buttons, here's what we're going to do. You know what is in your heart. You choose the appropriate terms from the following list (or use your own) and fill the blanks as necessary.

 

               Male                  Straight                  White

             Female                Lesbian                   Asian

               Gay                    Black                      Arab

             Liberal             Conservative            Christian

              Jew                    Muslim                   Atheist              

 

 I came across this great blog a few weeks ago. I really enjoyed the writing style. I just assumed the author was a __________  _________.

I visited the blog several times and left a few comments. I even went so far as to exchange emails with the author a couple of times. I thought some of their articles were a little weird but, for the most part, I really liked their sense of humor and take on topics. A couple of days ago something I read in a post hit me a little funny so I checked deeper and found out they were actually a _________  _________.

Now I don't know what to do because I am a ________  ________ and I feel very strongly about __________. I have never been comfortable around _________. I'm confused because I was really getting into their stuff but now, whenever  read it, I can't help thinking about _________.

 

Now what do you do?

 

Seriously.

 

You can lie to me but don't lie to yourself.

 

This happened to me. I wandered into a blog a couple of weeks ago and really liked the content. For some reason I don't know, I thought the author was a female of a certain political persuasion. After reading several posts and commenting on a few, I realized the author was, in fact, not only a male but also the polar opposite politically than I thought.

 

My feel-good, P.C. conscience said the content was all that mattered, who wrote it didn't change anything. In reality, my reaction disturbed me enough to inspire these posts. 

 

The truth is, it just feels different now. It shouldn't but it does. I still read the blog, I just don't know if it moves me as strongly as before.

 

How much does the image you have in your mind effect how you relate to and accept an author?

 

 

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7 comments:

Rudi said...

I'm male, straight and white :). I've been on the internet for quite a while now. hosting a chatroom etc, and I've met quite some weirdos I can tell ya. People who give themselves out to be someone completely else. I haven't had any experience like that in the blogging world yet, but to be honest, I'm not really looking for the fakes. if they are happy with what they do, then so be it lol.

Rhys said...

I really don't let it occupy my mind that much, but one of my readers is bugging me as I think she's got a girlfriend of some sort. I'd like to know, because I'm nosy like that.

With country, I think it's less easy to spot. One of my readers announced herself as being Swedish on my blog, and English was her second language. Her english was so good people thought she was British or American!

It's interesting when a blogger adds me to facebook, as I can spy on them more often. >:)

Would be interesting to do a post saying "I think that 'blogger x' is a.." and then describe the blogger in question. Put people would hate me as I have all sorts of ideas!

Bontb said...

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Ad Tracker said...

@ Rudi - I don't think anyone tells the whole truth in a chat room. The blog world is full of pen names for various reasons. (Most of them good)

Sometimes I think it may be better to just take the package that is presented and choose to either like it or not.

Thanks for your input :)


@ Rhys - You do have an eclectic group of readers!

I guess being a European, living in such close proximity to so many variations of language, would make it difficult to differentiate. I find it pretty easy, as an American, to spot anything non-American.

Yes, yes, all of your readers (And everyone should be!) know what kind of curiosities and ideas you have! (I'm still trying to figure out what number I am.) ;)


@ BONTB - Thanks for the suggestion. I'm already signed up, just waiting to meet the requirements to get approval to implement.

It'll be interesting to see the results of your experiment. It seems to have recieved quite a bit of negative attention on SU.

Rudi said...

In the end I knew most of my chatters in the room. As I met them in real life. But I agree it's very easy to fake.

Joe said...

That's why I use the avatar I have. No one knows who or what I am. I am not ashamed, but it does take away any prejudices. AS far as my color. Now all I have to do is learn how to write. Then I can really fake people out... :)

Ad Tracker said...

@ Rudi - I don't know that that is always a bad thing.


@ Joe - By choosing a generic avatar you force readers to judge you on your content. It's called branding ;)

I know there are a lot of bloggers who choose to only socialize in sub groups of whatever designation, probably for comeraderie. From a marketing standpoint it seems limiting unless, of course, that's your niche :)