1.22.2006

ground rules

Wmtc has lots of new readers these days, thanks in large part to all the interesting discussions going on in comments. I think it's time for a restatement of some ground rules, with apologies to long-time readers who already know this.

With all the political discussion that goes on here, you might not realize that wmtc isn't a completely open forum, an "anything goes" kind of blog.

While I was still in the US, I was periodically verbally attacked by wingnuts who were incensed at the idea that anyone would choose to leave TGNOTFOTE*. Wmtc still gets the occasional nasty comment, although now that I've left, they've mostly given up. (Why did they care in the first place? That's the eternal question.) Usually I deleted the attacks - unless I was feeling playful, then I hung the comment like a piƱata and we all had a good time.

In addition, I also don't want this blog used for fierce debates on controversial issues. Like many of you, I have very strong opinions and am passionately devoted to some beliefs that can be divisive. While I very much enjoy the exchange of information and ideas, I do not enjoy debating with people from diametrically opposed points of view.

What's more, I see no reason why my own blog should lend time and space to opinions I find morally offensive. For this, I have been accused of censorship, which just shows that someone needs a dictionary.

Many people are amazed that I simply don't want to debate. Commenters regularly try to goad me into arguments, resorting to the silliest schoolyard tactics ("You're just afraid you'll be shown up as wrong!" or "Whassamatter, the truth hurts?"). In turn, I closely monitor my email, deleting comments as fast as they show up. The commenter goes a little mad with frustration, then gives up and goes away.

From an old post on this topic:
This blog is my private space, my little oasis. That would seem contradictory, since it exists on the internet and anyone can read it. But it's a private space that I choose to share. I don't blog about my most personal feelings; you'll never read about my relationships, or family issues, or details about close friends. Those exist in an even more personal realm. But this blog is my soapbox: a place to tell my story, a place for my voice. . . .

There are a multitude of places I can read opposing viewpoints. I don't live with my head in the sand. I know what's out there. But if I were to allow this blog to be a forum for debate, I would spoil my little oasis. Blogging would become combative, stressful, annoying - hardly the point of something I do for enjoyment.

Everyone has a right to his or her opinion. Everyone has a right to make that opinion known. But I'm under no obligation to rent them a billboard in my own backyard.

Ask me a question, I'll try to answer. Post your opinion, if it's not morally offensive to me, I won't delete it. But try to engage me in debate on this blog, and you'll end up frustrated.
When I wrote that, there were about 25 people reading wmtc. My little manifesto seems kind of quaint, given what this blog has evolved into. But since I'm expecting a Roe-related attack, it's worth repeating.





* "the greatest nation on the face of the earth"

12 comments:

Granny said...

Roe has been nibbled to death by ducks here in the states thanks to SCOTUS.

I don't envision it getting a lot better but I keep plugging away.

Someday I'll write a post on our local Planned Parenthood battle. The good guys won but it was touch and go there for a while. Much hatred and vitriol from the other side.

Andrea said...

It is why I love this site L-girl. It is personal and honest. I dont get that too much in politics these days, and I greatly enjoy your opinions on things.

This is YOUR blog, keep it that way.
Love ya.
Dre

Echo Mouse said...

Exactly. A blog is a personal statement. Anyone showing up to criticize, bash, or debate when it's not that kind of blog, is a jerk.

Stick to your guns.

On a personal note, I hope I don't offend your blog ideals. Sometimes comments get pretty heated. I try to discuss intelligently but admit I'm not the most articulate when it comes to speaking on topics. So, just let me know when/if I upset you. That's never my intention. :)

L-girl said...

Hey, thanks you guys. That means a lot.

Echo Mouse, you have never come remotely close to offending me. I have no problem with heated comments. People feel passionately, and they should be able to express that. There's a big difference between that and personal attacks.

HCT said...

just popped over from the Gazetteer. Like your blog, and really like your rules. Too many threads get ruined by divisive, nasty comments.
I've bookmarked you. If you are still in Port C, then we're practically neighbours.

L-girl said...

Thank you very much, HCT - and welcome to wmtc! We are still in Port Credit, and hope to be for a long time.

David Cho said...

This is your site, and it shouldn't add any stress to your life, so your ground rules are very well grounded.

Anyway, have you seen this? I think I will try to contact the author.

L-girl said...

This is your site, and it shouldn't add any stress to your life, so your ground rules are very well grounded.

No pun intended, eh?

Thanks David. When it comes to respecting the views of people you disagree with, you are the best. Far better than me!

Anyway, have you seen this? I think I will try to contact the author.

OMG!! What a cutie. I'll read the story. Let me know if you hear from the author.

L-girl said...

David, once I started reading the story, I realized I had heard of it, I just didn't recognize the name.

It still makes me too sad to read about dogs. There was an op-ed in our paper (Globe and Mail), a man writing about having to put down his dog. I couldn't even look at it. I still miss B too much. :<(

David Cho said...

Thanks for the compliment, Laura.

Yes, a pun was intended, although not very clever.

Someone sent me the article because the book is titled "the world's worst dog" in contrast to Noah who is the best dog in the world. :) I think I will pick it up on the way home.

Cornelia said...

Laura, I think it's good that you maintain your boundaries and that you protect yourself from people who would like to make your own blog very unpleasant for you. As you say, they can write such stuff somewhere else. You know what? If people want to impose some stuff I have issues with (and very often for good reason!!!) on me I definitely don't need and "excuse" this with that it's "just their opinion", I have already said "Then tell somebody who is interested in that kind of thing / opinion". I also like refering to the competing constitutional right, which means: The right to opinion is protected by the constitution. But so is my right to to decide for myself who not to keep in touch with and who not to discuss certain things with (based on freedom and integrity).

L-girl said...

Cornelia, thanks for your support.