Importing from Blogger and rambling about YouTube.

I just finished importing content from my old Blogger, which, it turns out, is a quick and painless (if somewhat mystifying) process.  Behold!  My feeling from years past!

I’m often told by friends that I need to post more.  I also get a steady stream of comments from YouTube folks asking, “Are you ever going to make more videos?”  The truth is that I rarely feel that I get enough out of things like this to warrant doing it.  I initially joined YouTube because I wanted to interact with some of the people posting videos there, but found that real interaction was minimal (with some notable exceptions).  I wanted to engage in conversation, but most of the people commenting on videos and sending me messages were new folks looking for advice (which is great, but I’m not personally interested in teaching anyone).  I found that there wasn’t a lot of reciprocity.  People only occasionally offered thoughtful, conflicting opinions or engaged me in useful ways.  Overwhelmingly, I’ve found YouTube to be less about community and more about an exchange between teachers (more or less qualified) and faceless, virtual students.  I can hardly stand it when I’ve got a classroom of them staring at me.

Which of course begs the question, “How is a blog any different?”  Well, it’s not.  At least, not that I’ve seen so far.  Actually, I take that back.  There is one key difference that’s immediately apparent to me: Comments are fewer, but generally of much higher quality.  I think because blogs are less visually stimulating and require a lot of quick reading, they have a more narrow appeal.  I don’t say this to be elitist (having spent absurd amounts of time on things like YouTube and Tumblr and Instagram), but I do think text-heavy blogs are less accessible.  It takes more effort (even if it’s just marginal) to process material and then to craft a reply.

Mostly, I just prefer writing to making videos.  The biggest hang-up for me where this is concerned, however, is that I tell myself, “This should be going in your journal.  Why are you making this pubic?  This is narcissism.”  Well, yes, to a degree I suppose it is.  But maybe at the least it gives my friends an additional window into what’s on my mind.  And maybe people find me interesting in the way that I find other people interesting.  I’d much rather read a blog about someone’s day-to-day thoughts and goings on rather than long entries about, “THIS IS WHAT AN ATHAME IS FOR.”  But , again, that’s because I’m not interested in teaching (which is hilarious given both my profession and recent decision regarding Outer Court).

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3 thoughts on “Importing from Blogger and rambling about YouTube.

  1. naturaltruth

    “Overwhelmingly, I’ve found YouTube to be less about community and more about an exchange between teachers (more or less qualified) and faceless, virtual students.”

    Put another way, it is a social economy built on exchanging information (or, more likely, external validation) for status. The ideas don’t really matter except as vessels for power. Maybe that’s why shit like karma or ‘what an athame is for’ still gets talked about.

    I believe that it is possible to actually have a conversation that aims on improving terms or ideas or whatever without it being just an exchange of power. For that matter, there are teachers and students who don’t fit into this dynamic and who are doing something enjoyable and worthwhile, but they are a tiny minority. Thank you neo-liberal capitalism for creating the conditions for American individualism and the death of community and conversation and knowledge and language…

    “‘This should be going in your journal. Why are you making this pubic? This is narcissism.'”

    Journals and diaries can be narcistic too. Or not.

    I hope that you can purge your negative experiences teaching for the experiences that “teaching” (or “mentoring” or “loving”) has the capacity to represent. You may never find those experiences in a college classroom, but inside the circle is different. One of my biggest gripes with “Wicca 101” or “Wicca 333” is that it slams the higher ed teacher/student and classroom framework onto something that really has nothing to do with those. Relationships within a coven don’t have to look anything like a professor to a student. The end result is that the content in the books or what is “taught” becomes just as meaningless as the paper stock or ink used to print money. Instead, let something else take the prime place — gods or great ideas or experiences worth having. I don’t know. It breaks my heart that the things that have disillusioned you about school are bleeding into craft work.

    Reply
    1. naturaltruth

      It occurs to me that assuming you aren’t interested in a ‘teaching blog’ because of your professional experiences was not fair. You may have completely different reasons. You probably already have very nuanced understandings of what ‘teaching’ means in different contexts. I’m sorry for implying otherwise, and I am curious what you think.

      Reply

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