Saturday, August 19, 2006

Blogging and obligations.

I've been giving some thought to this blog, and how I feel about it.

Some people believed that asking if I was losing weight was an appropriate comment- I didn't. A 15 year old identified himself as such and continued to make comments, eventually revealing (or pretending to reveal) personal information. A long-time reader made multiple requests for a type of picture, even after I explained that I wasn't working with that photographer at the moment, and eventually deemed me rude for not obeying her commands.

Exactly what have I opened myself up to here? Should I be gracious that I have returning readers and fans who have specific requests and concerns- but am I allowed to be annoyed when they express them in a way I find offensive? Am I under a type of obligation?

I want to be a nice person, but a big part of me wants to explain that I'm doing this optionally. I post when and what I want. You don't have to read this if you don't want to.

Where is the line between politeness and saying, "look, you're getting naked pictures, stfu?"

Photography by Gary, taken in July, 2006.


Protagoras said...

I don't know. I'd think "you're getting naked pictures, STFU" would be an appropriate response to almost any comment you don't like related to this blog. Of course, I'm not the one making these requests and comments. I just view the blog because I like feminism and I like naked pictures.

9:40 AM  
Unhinged said...

I think if your attitude is, "you're getting naked pictures, STFU", then you need reconsider the objective of your blog. If the main purpose is naked photos, then open a porn site and keep your personality and ideas behind closed doors. If you really want to let people into your psyche and invite them to share your personal stories, I think you have to exhibit a certain amount of "politeness" and tolerance. Just as you would in real life.

1:06 PM  
Anonymous said...

You're under no obligation whatsoever.

I admit I came here for the pics, but I stayed for the blog, as well :p

1:30 PM  
Candy said...

Unhinged- I hope that's not my attitude most of the time. I certainly would like to foster discussion about feminism, and involves including people who disagree with me.

But in the examples I cited, it's almost as if people think I'm under an obligation to react or not react a certain way.

1:41 PM  
Anonymous said...

it's your blog. YOUR blog.

the end.

love angela.

4:43 PM  
ARConn said...

Candy, don't U also find people out in 'real life' who think U'r obligated to react (or not) in a certain way? It's the same problem, just accentuated by having the limited celebrity afforded by Bloggerdom.

8:14 PM  
Eric said...

It depends on why you're doing this, I think. What you ask is essentially the ancient artistic dilemma - do you stay true to your artistic vision and damn what anyone else might think, or do you bow to mass marketability (what the audience wants to see)?

If you're blogging because you simply love to blog and would do it even if no one read it... then there's no obligation for you to do anything but express yourself as you please. Keep doing what you want; readers who like it will stay and readers who don't are under no obligation to stay.

If, on the other hand, you're doing this for your audience, if you care about the traffic you get or eventually want to monetize this through advertising... then there might be more of an "obligation" on your part to keep them happy. Personally, I prefer the first reason though... this one turns blogging into a business/customer relationship, which is a lot less appealing to me both as a blogger and blog reader.

Just my two cents.

9:26 PM  
Candy said...

Hmm...these comments have made me remember my old "why this blog is here" was good to refresh my memory.

11:05 PM  
demandra said...

I haven't read the 'why this blog is here' entry just yet, but I'll say this--it's your body, it's your site. Do whatever the fuck you want. I don't care if people are paying you out the ass. No one who visits this site owns you.

2:43 PM  
figleaf said...

Hey Candy,

First of all, yeah, it's your blog! The only obligation you have to things a certain way would be if you were posting haiku or maybe limericks.

Second of all, I agree that naked photos aren't very good bait in the sense of "you're getting naked pictures, STFU." In the context of what I think you're trying to create (and what I sometimes try to) naked pictures are sort of like bass notes in a song -- they can provide depth but rarely contain enough info to carry the recording. In other words a more effective way to S them TFU would be to say "you're getting a feminist perspective, STFU."

Day to day blogging can get pretty distracting -- someone doesn't get why weight would be an issue, someone else wants you to pose this way or that, and suddenly alligators are piling up faster than the swamp is draining. Anyway, I really appreciated your reasoning in Why This Blog is Here. It's a good blog manefesto to look back at when it feels like commenters are trying to take over.

I found your blog via Amber's Carnival XXI. I've got to thank her.

Take care,


2:49 PM  
Bob said...

nothing new to say. It's your blog, you decide what to post. comments are for discussion. if they are distracting, turn them off. you don't owe anyone anything except the integrity of your expression. I happen to feel that if you pose by request, you are selling out. (although there is a difference if a pose request stirs an idea and leads to new art.) Please don't let the retards out there get you down. Having a blog in a public space sometimes means unwanted attention. Don't let it get you down, hold on to your vision.

3:50 PM  
Anonymous said...

I don't think she said anything about you being obligated. She made a simple and polite request and you responded in a very rude and negative way. You get uptight about someone asking if you lost weight and say how rude that person is then you turn around and do the same thing to someone else. Your response makes it seem like there is something else there. Maybe you regret the pictures or something

A simple no would have been fine.

Also, don't know if I'm on my own with this one, but I don't get the logic that since you aren't working with that photographer that you can't post any more pictures. It makes no sense.

Just my two cents

4:32 PM  
Candy said...

anon: She did not make a simple and polite request. She made multiple requests, in addition to making comments about how she disapproves of feminism in a rather insulting manner.

Also, I'm not working with that photographer means: no pictures. Which I told her.

6:20 PM  
Anonymous said...

Does making multiple requests mean the request aren't simple and polite?
Maybe anoying but still simple and polite.

Your an angry feminist. You go girl. Loving it

11:00 PM  
Candy said...

Anon: actually, yes, in this case, it does.

12:19 AM  
BAC said...

It's your blog, so do whatever you want. You are under no obligation to fulfill a specific request. You are under no obligation to respond politely to comments you deem offensive.

Feminism doesn't equal doormat.


1:21 AM  
Candy said...

Wait, wait- feminism doesn't equal doormat?

10:47 AM  
stroker said...

do what you want, when you want, just let us see those beautiful breasts periodically

7:18 PM  
D. Brian Nelson said...

Continue to be youreself, whoever that is at the time. I'm a fan.


9:33 PM  
Anonymous said...

Best tits on the web

6:57 AM  
Anonymous said...

Just sit back, relax, have another sip of martini, and shake your feminist fist at whatever you see fit. If something someone says about anything related to female issues rubs you the wrong way on YOUR site, by all means, talk about it.

Just keep in mind the anonymity of the web. People have less inhibitions when they're posting comments on a random blog than if they were to actually meet that person in the world of the real. It's almost like being drunk. Some people get intellectual when they've got sauce in their veins, but a lot of them just become stupid. So, if you read something that you find insulting or annoying, just think of it as a drunk talking to you.

7:14 AM  
BAC said...

"I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is: I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat."
-- Rebecca West


10:26 AM  
Daniel Haughton said...

CandyDoll, I believe I see the problem... Nobody ever told you what your obligations as a blogger actually were and now you're confused as a result. Allow me to rectify the confusion.

You are obligated to have fun.

You are obligated to be amused at stupid people until they become annoying.

You are obligated to point at the stupid people and say 'Gee, you're stupid' unless you don't feel like it, in which case you aren't.

You are obligated to honor every request, answer every question, and reveal every private thought unless you don't feel like it, in which case you are obligated to do none of the above.

You are obligated to find my jokes funny, unless you're fully awake, in which case no force in this universe can make my jokes funny.

You are obligated to relax and remember that no matter how snippy the people who post here get, they're still too stupid to find anything better to do with their lives than bitch to you about what they don't like about you. Unless, of course, you don't want to, in which case you are obligated to ignore the above.

Finally, last but not least, you are obligated to like cats more than dogs. Cats rule, dogs drool.

3:51 AM  
Christine Mitra said...

In my own experience I've found that people have a real problem seperating whore from smart lady. You're one or the other. I don't see that this is a job for you, and even if it was, I don't think even in my waitressing gig if someone demanded something and demanded it NOW that I'd give it to them. Even if I am being paid.

2:36 AM  

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