Social Media

Earlier this month I announced that I was going to retire my Iceland Weather Report Facebook page. It so happened that the announcement came in the wake of a post that had attracted racist, hateful comments from a bunch of people who apparently were at their wits end because several thousand Icelanders wanted to help Syrian refugees whose children were drowning in the Mediterranean Sea. I'm not even going to try to describe what sorts of feelings and thoughts arose in me when I read some of those comments. Suffice it to say that I felt sick, and also shocked to think that I had, with my page, potentially been feeding those people's fascist wet dream of Iceland as some sort of uncontaminated Aryan paradise. Also, I had been engaging in jovial online banter...

In Doris Lessing's excellent novel The Golden Notebook, the main character, Anna, has four different notebooks in which she writes about the different aspects of her life. She struggles with this, and in the end somehow manages to combine the four different notebooks into one - her golden notebook. [caption id="attachment_817" align="alignleft" width="219"] A pretty accurate depiction of ...

When I first signed up for Facebook, I was delighted by what it offered me. During the course of my life I'd lived in so many places and made so many friends that I couldn't possibly keep up with everyone via traditional email [to say nothing of snail mail]. But with Facebook, I had them all in one place, so to speak. Their pictures, thoughts and various goings-on showed up in my news feed and it was great to be able to see what they were up to. Sure, I knew that in return I had to hand over to Mark Zuckerberg various bits of info about myself - my age, where I lived, my likes and dislikes - but that...

I was reflecting today on how the line between social media and Real Life has become increasingly blurred over the last few years. [caption id="attachment_276" align="alignleft" width="186" caption="Anyone remember this image?"][/caption] When I first started blogging, back in 2004, I was intent on keeping my blog separate from my life. I made sure I didn't use my full name - just my first name, or sometimes Alda Kalda. (That was my own little private joke, and I remember having a GAH! moment when someone actually referred to me by that name, thinking it was real.) Neither did I show my face on the profile photo - only the back of my head. Only my closest relatives and friends knew about my blog,...

OK, we may as well start out with a wee confession: I'm a little bit intimidated by this new blog. Despite having written over 1,000 blog posts on my previous blog, to the point where I could write posts in my sleep, this slope here feels just a tad slippery. Maybe it's the subject matter. Or maybe it's the whole idea of finding my place in the new world order of blogging. See, the concept of BLOG has changed a lot since I started out back in the day (October 2004, to be exact). I'm sure you've noticed it - that is, if you're the kind of person who pays attention to blogs at all. Back then, it was all the rage to...