There’s more than a few of them out there, especially in the new-age/hippie sectors.
I call these bloggers “Chicken Bloggers.”
So what is a chicken blogger, you ask? Simply put, a chicken blogger is a blogger who is too chicken to enable comments on their blog. There’s a number of reasons why this can be:
- The blogger is too scared of trolls
- The blogger is too scared to have their statements questions/put into debate
- The blogger is afraid that someone else will steal the show in the comments
- The blogger doesn’t want to enable discussion.
There’s a whole slew of other reasons, most of which involve being afraid of additional voices. My belief in terms of the LOAers and new agers that do this is that they don’t want anyone presenting facts/logic that contradict the spew that they want to drop on people. Similar thoughts go to political bloggers and bloggers that post things they know will piss people off.
Are you afraid of the truth?
Too bad. The whole point of blogging in my opinion is to allow for a two-way connection between author and writer. That’s why the comments option is enabled by default. Not enabling comments basically makes your blog no different than a newspaper. There’s no point in reading your blog if I can’t communicate with you.
Even if you don’t enable comments on your blog, what’s to keep someone from writing on their OWN blog, linking it to yours via a backlink and tweeting it out to the masses. Even if you block backlinks, you still have social media and Google to worry about. You have silenced nobody, and have now given someone else their own voice on their own work, when it could have been fought out on your own site on your terms.
You also look high and mighty when you do it too, like your opinion or thoughts are what’s correct, and nobody else can correct you or offer an alternative opinion. Yeah, it may be your site, but you definitely are not God’s gift to your niche.
Furthermore, you also keep people from starting discussions on your posts. Blogs are supposed to make people think. When people think, they discuss their thoughts. When people discuss (civilly), everyone wins.
Or are you afraid of something else?
Do you block comments because you’re afraid of trolls? If so, just delete them as they come. If you use a commenting platform like LiveFyre or Disqus, you can ban them from commenting on your site as well. Heck, for really popular blogs, your fans will make quick work of the troll for you, leaving no need to delete the post. Instead, you can just leave it there as a proverbial head on a stick.
Hate spam? That’s what Akismet is for. It comes with WordPress installs for a reason. It hooks up to a massive spam filter that’s pretty damn accurate.
Enable your comments people. That’s what it’s there for. Not enabling comments is for chickens.
Negative thinking gets a bad rap that it doesn’t deserve.
Not everyone accused of being negative is actually being negative. Some people just straight out call out BS where they see it. Guess what? I’m one of them. And guess what I’m frequently accused of?
Another case in point: I had a teacher in high school. We’ll call him JP. JP was one of those people that believed in 100% positivity, and frequently called me out for my negativity. What were some of my “negative” comments? Things like how there’s pollution in the Santa Monica Bay (There is), and that some people are idiots. Hard cries from the complainers and whiners one thinks of with negative nancies.
In case my quiz post on how “Positive” you really are wasn’t clear enough, let me clarify further: I believe that our society (at least American society) has placed too much emphasis on being “positive,” often to the point where we will refuse to listen to naysayers, after all “They’re only trying to drag us down” or some shit like that. I often wonder if that happened with things like the Titanic or The Edsel.
Look, I’m not saying that you should be weighed down by negativity. Far from it, negativity is the side of your brain that says “You can’t,” and there might be a damn good reason for it. Even Cherie Carter-Scott, author of the (rather dumb) book Negaholics: How to Overcome Negativity and Turn Your Life Around, admits that it’s there to protect you. When something in you says “Don’t touch that, it looks dangerous” or “Maybe giving $10,000 to that Nigerian prince is a bad idea,) you have negativity to thank.
That being said, it’s often my concern that people deliberately push out negative thinking in the hopes that it will increase the chances that their tasks or projects will succeed. Mainly because I don’t think it works. It’s like ignoring the cop at the road telling you to turn back because the bridge is icy/dangerous and you could fall, thinking him too negative for you. Consider this quote:
The optimist without the pessimist builds spectacular skyscrapers that fall apart when the first woodpecker gives them a rap. The pessimist without the optimist may never conceive of the skyscraper in the first place. – Scott Brinker
Bottom line people, stop giving negativity a bad rap. It’s only trying to save you from making stupid mistakes. If someone is telling you like it is, don’t rebuke it, accept it; it might be valid advice.
So recently, Time Magazine released “The 100 Most Influential People.” The list is the result of a bunch of people voting in and seeing if someone was worthy of being on the list. The results have been (to me, anyway) a cross between hilarity, frustration, and this thought:
Now, do not get me wrong, there are indeed people who do deserve to be on this list that are on the list. People like Pope Francis, Malala Yousafzai and Barack Obama totally deserve their place on the line. But some just leave me going “What in hell are people thinking?”
This goes beyond things like “Well I don’t agree with the things he/she says/does so they don’t deserve the recognition” These are people who have contributed close to NOTHING of significance, and their presence on the list is a complete and total mystery. Let’s start with a few “favorites.”
First up on our tour of BSland is Kim Kardashian West. It’s important to keep in mind, by the way, that each of these people has a brief bio/article written by someone else who is also famous, and they tend to be more famous than the person in question. In this case, the article is penned by none other than Domestic Legend Martha Stewart. According to her, KimK is influential because she (and the rest of her clan) are “a totally modern construct.” She argues that because they are a blended family with “biracial pairings” (Which is her way of saying she’s married to Kanye) that they deserve to be on the list.
Right. We’re talking about someone who initially got famous because of a sex tape with her and Ray-J, and who has basically done nothing but bask in her late father’s earnings and life savings. She has a product line and other things because…why, exactly? What exactly is she even influential for? Shaking her ass? Well, I guess that works. I guess it also helps she’s married to Kanye West.
And Speaking of Kanye, yup, he’s on there too. And his article is written by no other than ACTUAL INFLUENCER Elon Musk. Basically, the whole blot can be summarized in the first sentence:
Kanye West would be the first person to tell you he belongs on this list. The dude doesn’t believe in false modesty, and he shouldn’t.
There you go. Kanye West is on the list, according to Musk, because Kanye would feel like being on the list. Seriously Elon? I really don’t want to knock Elon because I really respect his work and the thing’s he’s done, and I’m kinda pissed that Kanye made the list and he didn’t. Then again, maybe this is Elon’s way of getting back at Time and Kanye for not making the list, by making Kanye look like an ass. If so, well done, Elon.
Tim Cook is on the list as well. Look, I think Tim’s done a bang-up job running Apple, and he’s definitely helped make the company a much more mature version of what it used to be, but to give Tim this spot over Apple’s founder, Steve Jobs, is a complete insult to the man’s legacy, and to Apple’s as well. I’m not a fan of ol’ iGod, but even I have to admit that Steve Jobs has influenced technology in a way that Tim Cook could never hope to achieve.
And then we come to Taylor Swift (In the ICONS section next to people like Pope Francis and Malala no less). Yes, that Taylor Swift. Her contributor, Mariska Hargitay, feels that Taylor is “tuned in to the greater good, and she embraces—thoughtfully and authentically—the chance to contribute to the world.” Umm, how, exactly? About the only thing Swift is famous for is writng 10+ songs about broken relationships. Hardly the workings of someone truly influential. Trouble. Trouble. Trouble.
These are people that readers picked. WE THE PEOPLE picked them. I think We The People can do better. Where’s Martin Luther King? Where’s the Dalai Lama? Where’s Winston Churchill? Where’s Thomas Edison, or even Nikola Tesla? What about Satoru Iwata, CEO of Nintendo? Oh well, guess nobody cared enough for them.
Now that you’ve read through my rant about how “influential” these people are, here’s a funny. Go take a look at who penned Ruth Bader Ginsburg‘s entry into the top 100 (Yes she deserves to be there, IMO). Just look. Laugh. Then come back. Also, the Koch Brothers’ entry was written by Rand Paul, which is funny too.
I also laughed at the fact that Kim-Jong-Un’s entry was written by a North Korean defector. I mean the guy definitely has few friends but still…that’s kinda funny. I also think it would have been funny if Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren had written each other’s Top 100 blurbs. (Clinton wrote Warren’s but not the other way around.)
When I first started out blogging, I didn’t have a theme. I blogged about whatever I wanted. Some days I blogged about politics. Others I blogged about technology. And some days I just made fun of a video.
It wasn’t until after grad school and I seriously took up blogging again that I realized that I needed a theme. At that time, I chose social media and blogging as my theme, and it was a good theme, but then came 2012.
After my mom passed away, I lost almost all interest in social media. I felt like nothing was going to come of it, so I let my blog hang dry. Now, almost 3 years later, I’m back…but guess what?
I HAVE NO THEME AGAIN!
But honestly, I don’t really care anymore. When I blogged previously, I wanted to be an expert (and I did know what I was doing,) and I wanted to come off as that. But now I figure if I want to write something professionally, I can guest post wherever I feel my interests lie. I still love consumer technology, and I guess I’ll always have a foot in social media, but I’m moving more toward going after the “Law” of Attraction publicly, moreso than I already have. And that’s ok. Because I think that audiences want more than just a single area. I think talking about tech all the time would get boring. We’re humans. We have multiple interests and we should utilize them.
So once again, my blog is a blog about nothing. And I’m ok with that. My life has always taken a bit of a “Jack of all trades” mentality, and while I am skilled in some things and suck in others, I think I should just accept that my interests will never be in one place for the rest of my life.
So what about me, the reader?
If you’re truly passionate about a topic or a theme, by all means get with it and make a blog dedicated to the niche. If, however, you’re like me and you have the theme capacity of a goldfish, be a jack of all trades. Most people carry a Swiss Army Knife because it serves multiple purposes, and they all fit on one knife. That’s what you should be: The Swiss Army Knife in the Internet.
Memories Pizza in Indiana now has a gofundme account nearing close to a million dollars, despite the fact that they have served no pizza in the last few days. How did they get such an amazing gift in money? Well, it’s because they decided to take a stand and say that their pizza company would NEVER cater the wedding of a gay couple. (Nevermind the fact that no person capable of a decent wedding would choose to have pizza at their wedding…)
And what happened, you ask? Harassment. The pizzeria received tens of thousands of rounds of hate mail, threats, and other comments. Their Facebook, Yelp and website all got attacks from trolls and angry people. It got to the point where the store was forced to close down. All throughout, I have seen posts and comments from people saying that the harassment was totally justified.
Now, some will argue that Memories pizza was taking advantage of a situation and was goading people to respond to it. My response? If that’s the case, (which I doubt) and you chose to give them crap for it, YOU FELL FOR THEIR BAIT, HOOK, LINE AND SINKER. At the end of the day, you still chose to harass this restaurant instead of simply ignoring them and letting them fade into oblivion, and it’s your fault they’re raking in the dough. If you didn’t harass them, then you should at least explain to people why letting these people slip through the cracks was a far better option. In this case, if they were ignored, they would either reverse course on their own or simply go away.
I condemn online harassment of all types. I condemned the harassment Anita Sarkeesian got (and still gets) for Feminist Frequency, even though I don’t necessarily agree with everything she says. She has a right to say what she wants to say within applicable law (Libel, fire in a crowded theater and all that). I’ve been stalked online. I’ve been harassed before. It’s not fucking fun. Yet some people choose to stalk and harass her and other people online.
But Anita Sarkeesian is talking about advocating feminism and equality, and Memories Pizza is advocating bigotry!
So what? You’re missing my point. By giving them negative attention, you feed the fire. They get to go back to their supporters looking like victims, and they end up getting coddled and reinforced. By attacking them, YOU LOST.
All those Facebook comments? They all disappeared after FB got wind of them. The Yelp reviews? Give them a week or two and they will go away, just as they did with Amy’s Baking Company and the Stingray Cafe after they got attacked online. Their efforts will be all for naught. Good job, people.
YOU DO NOT HAVE TO ATTACK EVERYTHING YOU DON’T LIKE ON THE INTERNET.
IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT, IGNORE IT. IT’S AS SIMPLE AS THAT.
- A: Try to explain to the officer that he needs to be more positive about the circumstances and not automatically think bad things will happen.
- B: Laugh in the cop’s face and keep driving, obviously in control of your universe.
- C: Immediately put petal to the metal. Negative people, when given the chance, will immediate cause problems for you later on with their vibrations.
- A. To berate the barista for their lack of optimism about the product.
- B. Insist that they search for it, and while they do, manifest thoughts about finding the ingredient
- C. Never come to the coffee place again, because it’s clearly infested with negative people.
- A. Painstakingly explaining to the engineer that you know the product will work the way you want it because you manifested it that way.
- B. Having the engineer referred to HR for “productivity enhancement programs” to correct the negative deviancy.
- C. Firing the engineer on the spot before he can further contaminate your company with negativity!
- A: A lecture about how to manifest food from positive thinking, as Jesus, a positivity guru did.
- B: Making the homeless person say 10 self-affirming statements, 10 things they’re grateful for, and promise to purchase your guru’s book for $29.99, which “Changed your life.”
- C: To fuck off and to have them think about how they exude so much negativity.
- A: By saying you’re sorry that she manifested the idea of being raped and robbed by someone, and that maybe she should take this as a positive opportunity instead.
- B: By enrolling her immediately in a positive-manifestation camp…at her expense, of course.
- C: By immediately slamming the phone shut before she can disrupt your positive vibrations further.
- A: “Why should I help anyone less fortunate than me? It’s obviously because they don’t think as positive as I do!”
- B: “I’m happy to help. I’ll lead classes on how we all need to think more positive!”
- C: “I’m tending my letter of resignation because this company wants to associate with negativity!”
- A: You take no meds. Medications are a sign that you don’t believe in manifesting with the universe.
- B: The above, and you also add that you will also be signing up for daily meditation and focus classes.
- C: A & B, and add that will only see spiritual healers from here on out.
- A: Beat yourself up over the day you manifested.
- B: Watch a marathon clip of your guru’s videos on accentuating the positive.
- C: Plop down a shit-ton of money for direct access to your guru: You’re in the negative danger zone!
- A: $100 or less
- B: $1,000 or less
- C: $10,000 or less
- D: Money is no object
- A: “I know I can. I just have to say that over and over and over and over again.”
- B: “Don’t worry, I’m reading every book to manifest hope and positive outcomes. You should read some of these!”
- C: “I know I will, if only for the fact that I am more positive than you are. Being more positive = better experience!”
Ok, I need to say something really quick. For most of you who know me, it’s kind of obvious what I will be saying. For others, and those totally into the “Our thoughts shape our reality” baloney, read on:
Yesterday, I posted a rant on Facebook about something that had happened to me. When I posted this, I got a nugget of a comment asking me if I ever considered that my “negative perceptions create a negative reality?”
Ok, seriously? This is something I VEHEMENTLY disagree with. I am someone who has been told countless times about needing to be “more positive,” often by people who would basically do the equivalent of driving off a cliff without a parachute because we should “always take risks.” Yeah, good luck with that.
What the man was saying is something that’s a core tenet of something called the “Law” of Attraction, that like thoughts attract like realities. I refer to it as the “Law” of Attraction because it’s about as much a universal law as the “Law” of Potato Inference is…which, considering that I just made it up, means it’s not a universal law at all. First off, what he said is on its face absolutely untrue, as there have been many occasions where I expected the worse and everything went great, and times when I thought everything would be awesome and it blew up in my face.
But seriously, let’s take a look at how this line of thinking (Negative thoughts = Negative Reality) is a bullshit line of thinking:
- If a woman is raped, it’s clearly because she was thinking that she was going to be raped.
- Your son got killed by a cop for no real reason? You obviously hate cops.
- Experience racism? It’s only because you manifest the negative feeling of racism.
- Got beaten because you were gay? You obviously associated being gay with something negative.
The negative perception line of thinking is a direct highway to a blame-the-victim mentality. And that is an extremely bad mentality.
I might add, by the way, that the commenter also contradicted themselves later after I replied, saying “Nothing works out for anyone 100% of the time…” So basically, even if I have positive thoughts all the time, I’d still have a negative reality. Awesome.
I’m going to go on record saying that I used to be a lot more negative than I am now, but apparently in the eyes of some people (Especially the people driving off cliffs), I will never be positive enough, until the day that positivity is literally coming out of every orifice of my body. And that’s never going to happen. Because that would be disturbing.
If you’re a photographer of any kind, amateur to pro, you’ve probably heard already that Facebook satellite Instagram recently released an App called Hyperlapse. Hyperlapse is an app that’s designed to help people take time-lapse photos of things like valleys, commutes, and other things.
Now, I’ve done my own Time-Lapsed projects, such as this one…
Which totally got me excited to play with this app! I mean, I’d love to do more driving videography!
……And then I see this:
Hyperlapse from Instagram is available today for iOS devices in Apple’s App Store. It is currently only available for iOS.
Once again, us Android users are left in the wings while everyone with an iDevice gets to reap the benefits. I’m sure we’ll EVENTUALLY get to play with it, but until that day comes, all us Droid users get to do is sit and watch while everyone and their iPhone time lapses away.
And this isn’t the only time I’ve seen this either. Time and time again, apps are often first released to iOS before they even THINK about releasing to Android. Vine, for example, took six months to produce an Android version of its app, while iOS users had been living it up. Hell, it took Instagram 18 months before they finally decided to release an Android version. 18 MONTHS.
To borrow from some of my progressive friends, Apple has privilege.
Specifically, it has the privilege of being the first market for almost every app there is.
And honestly, it doesn’t even really deserve it. Here’s some of the following reasons:
- Android device sales FAR outnumber those of iOS
- There are more entry level Android devices than there are iOS ones (Same source as above)
- It’s cheaper to develop for Android than it is to develop for iOS ($25 flat rate for android vs $99 PER YEAR for iOS)
- Android code is made with common languages Java and XML, whereas iOS has its own “Swift” language, and before that, Objective C
I think it’s time for a change. I don’t want to advocate that people give Android priority, as that would basically make me hypcritical. However, can we at least start releasing both iOS and Android apps at the same time? That way, nobody has to be left out of the fun.
But no, of course we can’d do that. Because apparently all the developers are iFanboys or something like that.
Seriously people, learn your damn audience.
The passing of Robin Williams is indeed a tragic event. What makes it worse is that it was a death that may well have been preventable. While to the best of my knowledge authorities have NOT confirmed suicide as the cause of death, it is well known that Williams suffered from severe depression.
Many of my friends (and myself included) have suffered from depression at some point. And a few of us have even contemplated suicide at some point in our lives. Depression is not something you just “push through.” It is not something you just “gotta get over” or as my mom would have put it “something you just buck up and deal with.” It is as much a disease as the flu and cancer are, and should be treated as such.
The stigma that mental disease is stupid or crap or just something you have to “Happy yourself” over needs to go away. Perhaps if it never existed, Robin Williams would still be with us today.
* If you are suffering from depression, there is help for you. Talk with your friends. If your friends can’t help, then family. If family won’t help, then find someone who will. It could be a therapist, a priest, rabbi, or hell, a bartender. Just SOMEONE who will listen.
* If you know someone with depression, do everything you can to help them. You’d help them if they fell or got hurt physically, right?
* If you or someone you know has expressed an intention to kill themselves, TELL SOMEONE, or call the police.
Requiescant In Pace, Robin Williams. Nunc tandem ad pacem.