Posted By Veiled Muslimah on/at 10/24/2008 01:49:00 AM

Assalāmu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullāhi Wabarakath,

When it comes to blogging, there are irks and then there are perks. After a blogger is established for a couple of years he or she will experience downfalls and rewards. Like it is with everything else, blogging has its advantages and disadvantages. These irks and perks come in different forms and sizes, according to what is being blogged about, the background of the blogger and how much the amount of traffic the blog receives on an average.

I’m going to share some of mine. In the past month or so, I’ve been advised by different people to ‘tone down’ what I write on my blog for security/political reasons because a lot of my posts are Islamic themed. At first I was a bit flustered if not angry, but considering this advice came from people I dearly respect, trust and look-up to, it actually made sense to an extent. It is always better to take pre-cautions, especially when blogging about Islam/Political issues, considering the amount of people that are picked up and imprisoned for being 'too vocal', even in Muslim Countries.

Before somebody attacks me on this, No, I am not being a coward or scared. Just being careful.

A couple of years back, I was as anonymous as any other blogger on the blogosphere. But over the years, my blog address somehow got around and people came to know who I was. So a lot of the people who actually read my blog know me in real-life. One may ask, ‘Why should this matter?’ The answer to which is, it does. A lot. There is this sense of freedom one experiences when one is anonymous and I’ve felt it. Believe it or not, individuals feel safer and much more comfortable sharing their personal life with strangers compared to people they actually know. Now I think twice about what I write, simply because I don’t want people confronting me in real life about what I wrote one particular day on my blog!

I've noticed that over the years, I've started catering to what my readers expect to read when they come here, instead of what I personally feel like blogging about. And that, I feel, makes blogging loose its essence, not to mention, you actually start feeling uncomfortable blogging about other issues or experiences.

However, there are advantages to blogging too. One obviously being, you get to express yourself freely and can communicate with the wider public from the comfort of your home whilst still remaining anonymous. Blogging proves to be a very good medium for inter-activeness, communication and reaching out to the masses, uniting on different issues or discussing other subjects. Blogging also helps in wiping out stereotypes of different cultures, religions and people because different people around the World come together on the blogosphere, to share their thoughts, opinions, political views, religious views, et al, offering reasonings, explanations and other views about their culture and what they believe in.

In the recent years, blogging has become many things for people. A money-making invention, a place to vent your thoughts, a place for serious discussion or just informational websites run by people. In fact, now, Politicians, Islamic Scholars, Celebrities and other such people, realising the benefits that come with are jumping on the blogosphere. With it coming as without cost, it has become one of the most highly used mode of communication.

All in all, blogging comes with its set of interesting issues.

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Habayeb said...

I have been having the same thoughts since last couple of weeks. And the thought of being imprisoned for voicing our opinions on political issues scares me too. I remember the case of saudi blogger brother Fahad(was that his name?)

Anonymous said...

No, I am not being a coward or scared. Just being careful

I fully agree with you here. People who have got into trouble because of their blogs in a way deserved it. Why? Because they forget that no one wants to be insulted or humiliated in public. And most of those bloggers did that openly. Moderation is the key.

My guide on this matter is this Quranic verse: Invite to the Way of your Lord with wisdom and fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better (16:125)

It is very difficult to change oneself, and trying to change the sytem overnight is almost next to impossible. What you need is patience. My advice, don't stop writing about stuff you like, but try to change your tone as per the instruction of the verse I mentioned.

As for the template, I would still say: change it. You have three column template, but all the three columns look the same & crowded, there isn't much differentiation because of same text colour. This is my opinion, although final decision of course is in your hand :-)

Veiled Muslimah said...

Thanks for the comments guys, Habayeb, Yep, it's been going in my head for a long time and I kind of discussed it with a few people too. Sad World we live in though.

DG: Jazakallah khair for the naseeha. :)

I disagree with the bloggers deserving to be imprisoned though, especially those blogging for Islam, etc. If we stop being vocal, then who will?

There is a lot more to it though, and I can understand where you're coming from and I also agree partly.

As for the template, I still like it! Lol, I just find it a hassle to shift all of my widgets to a new once, also I was very proud of myself for tweaking it a bit today. However, even I feel its slightly crowded, ill try and do a few more updates/tweaking in the future. I'm a bit out of time these days. :( Thanks for the input.

Modern Girl said...

I definitely agree with your list of irks and perks.

As far at the moderation on speech goes, I'm also pretty wary. I live in Canada, in which we do have Freedom of Speech, provided that our speech is not considered Hate Speech or does not infringe on the rights of others. But even with Freedom of Speech, I feel pretty hesistant to stray from a politically correct attitude. I don't want to push any buttons that are going to upset specific groups of people.

And that's probably why I write anonymously. There's no way I could honestly speak my mind the way I do, or talk about my personal events if my real name was posted on my blog.

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Musings, Articles and Ramblings of a Muslim Woman which range from a variety of different subjects.

Location: Dubai - United Arab Emirates.
The believers are only those who, when Allâh is mentioned, feel a fear in their hearts and when His Verses (this Qur'ân) are recited unto them, they (i.e. the Verses) increase their Faith; and they put their trust in their Lord (Alone).
Surat Al-Anfal - Verse 2
The Holy Qurán