I am a big fan of Chris Bowers, one of the main proprietors of the MyDD “direct democracy” political blog and one of the most prolific and influential netizens at the heart of the so-called “net-roots” phenomenon. And my respect for his skill as a writer and thinker only grew after reading his introspective post about how blogging for nearly three years straight, 65 hours a week, has not just changed his external life (in terms of opening a whole new world of work and contacts and friends and influence to him) but his internal life. Read this:
After two and a half years of virtually non-stop blogging, my perception of myself as a distinct individual has dramatically waned. My interior monologue has virtually disappeared. I no longer have aesthetic-based epiphanies, and I almost never concern myself with examining internal passions or emotions anymore. Blogging has not just changed the activities in which I engage–the activities in which I engage in order to be a successful blogger have profoundly altered the way my mind operates and the way I conceptualize my agency in relation to others. In effect, I do not exist in the same way I once existed.
Chris does something unusual as a blogger, which is almost entirely write, with tremendous focus and verve, about reviving progressive politics. If you don’t know who he is, you probably did hear about his effort to organize liberal bloggers to “google-bomb” Republican congressional candidates (the press fell all over that one) and he is also the guy who started the blogswarm that pushed Democratic candidates who were running unopposed but sitting on huge warchests to cough up nearly $3 million to help more embattled candidates. This guy is very effective. Call him a super-empowered netizen, one of the best of the breed.
But reading Chris talking about his blogging and how it’s affecting him, it’s hard to not to notice one glaring fact–all his blogging is about work. Yes, work that he is passionate about, but still, he’s not making much room in his life for anything else.
Maybe he needs a personal blog, apart from MyDD, where he’ll unwind. Or maybe just a good long vacation, well-deserved.