The Importance of being earnest (in blogsphere)

When Oscar Wilde first wrote “The Importance of Being Earnest”, I bet he didn’t think this adage will still be relevant in our society, albeit in a different media space – blogsphere.

The Internet and introduction of blogging have created a media space for previous unknowns and man-in-the-street to have their opinions published and shared. What sets the good bloggers and not-so-good bloggers apart are not just the quality of their writings, but their ideas,opinions and personalities.

Recently, Singapore’s infamous blogger, Xiaxue‘s crass manner of writing and excessive use of expletives in one of her blogspots on the Singapore’s General Elections has been a topic in Singapore’s blogsphere.

Xiaxue, in a videoblog, talking about her plastic surgery. (Screen shot from http://www.xiaxue.blogspot.com)

Lacing her pre- and post-General Elections blogsposts (refer to image below) with swearing, bad grammar and run-ons, Xiaxue is seemingly unafraid of brickbats and negative feedback. Interestingly, Xiaxue has a large readership base and followers on Twitter, though social media experts may argue that owning a large following on your blog and Twitter does not necessarily co-relate with your popularity.

Content from Xiaxue’s blogspot on the Singapore General Elections. (Screen shot from http://www.xiaxue.blogspot.com)

Here’s the catch: Xiaxue’s blog was also deemed important enough to be curated as part of Singapore’s history by the National Library Board, to the dismay of many Singaporeans and Singaporean bloggers.

Much of the displeasure stemmed from the fact that Xiaxue writes about her day-to-day issues, (lack of, some may say) fashion sense, love life and her (sponsored) beauty and skin-care blogposts. Have we come to expect too much or too little from a blogger? After all, a blog is one’s personal space to share whatever he or she feels like it.

A blogger like Xiaxue who has been catapulted to fame, by the sheer volume of her readership base, has a responsibility to be a role model since she IS a public figure now.

The importance of being earnest in the blogsphere is important because:

  • no media trends and blogs live forever. Blogging will not be able to provide a blogger with a comfortable retirement. By putting out this negative image to the world, Xiaxue may be burning a lot of bridges should she needs to build a new career.
  • your readers grow up too. Bloggers need to showcase a level of maturity and responsibility in their blogs and rantings because readers get tired of reading the same content and crude language.

While your blog is your personal space, it also forms part of your resume and personal branding.

So, what branding would you be creating for your blog?

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