I love ET blogs. Here's why...
ET blogs are not petty, inconsequential - they allow us to speak out and build a picture of the larger whole.
It is sometimes argued that blogs are inconsequential, petty accounts of peoples' personal dilemmas which are misrepresented as national issues. In a recent piece "10 things I hate about ET blogs" the writer says that blogs demand neither skill nor experience, and offer little more than tunnel-visioned narratives. Is it ironic that I've decided to write a blog-like account of this matter?
Society under a microscope
The story of one individual, say a pesky feminist, or a bitter member of a minority group, is seemingly petty and inconsequential. In a larger scheme, these stories are anything but. A society is a composition of insignificant people and their insignificant chronicles, adding up to something greater and grander than the sum of its constituents.
The principle of reading a blog is essentially the same as microscopically examining a specimen biopsied from a diseased part of the human body. You know that there's something wrong with the structure as a whole, but you cannot fully understand the pathology without studying the tissue at a microscopic scale. One needs to find out what goes wrong at the most basic level.
Blogging is a quintessentially Faiz-ian activity. Where the good poet said, "bol" (speak), I say, "likh" (write), which is pretty much the same thing.
Terrible writers with great idea
Not all bloggers are skilled writers, and may not be appreciably better at spelling and grammar than most people. Logical and factual errors can be found in abundance in most blogs ("like this one", says an annoying critic).
But that's the point! You don't need to be a best-selling author to have a good idea - you just need to have a good idea. Most ET bloggers are exceptionally articulate and come up with more fertile phrases in a semi-comatose state than their critics can conjure up on a coke buzz. But even those with relatively inferior writing skills should not be dissuaded from bringing about some positive societal impact, however slight.
Speaking of impact, bloggers are frequently accused of having delusions of grandeur - believing that they are much more influential than they actually are. A blogger can often find himself being scrutinized for his incessant calls to "fix" things, just for the taste of five minutes of sensei-status.
I cannot speak on behalf of all bloggers but it is quite satisfying for me to simply get my opinions, allegedly classified as "shamelessly liberal", across to the conservative ranks. Whether this message is pondered upon and embraced, or spat upon and rejected is less relevant to me. I enjoy the constructive criticism from right-wing elements almost as much as I relish support from the liberal groups.
The simple joy of being published
Ultimately, it's not so much about changing perspectives and saving the world, as it is about personal contentment of having your work read by a sizeable group of people (and not just the two unfortunate buddies you've been pestering the whole day to read your blog). Watching the pixels shine with your words, and counting comments and Facebook likes as they trickle in, is one of those small joys in life that really add up to something big.