July 18, 2018 | ° F

Blogging not terribly flawed

I caved. It took nearly a year, but I took the plunge into territory I swore off at the onset of this mess. It happened late Tuesday evening as the snow began to dissipate any streetwalkers into the safety of their homes. I had finally settled into bed after a long day of trekking through the city, but slumber wasn't coming easy, so I grabbed Mack from his shelf — yes, my laptop is anthropomorphic — and opened up all sixteen of my favorite blogs. Then, against my better judgment, it happened.

I made my own.

I don't know what came over me. Many a friend has suggested I compile my thoughts and referred posts into a defined (yet intangible) space, but I've resisted, mostly because I'm technologically incapable at best. I suppose creating your own blog is a decent career move, as faking computer savvy is a necessity in the journalism world these days, but I'm backing in slowly. Even with this blatant opportunity to shamelessly plug said blog, I'm uncertain if I'm worthy of my own corner of the Internet, so I'll keep it concealed for now. Besides, it's still in its initial phase — a stream of reblogged pictorial consciousness sprinkled with bouts of analytical commentary for your viewing pleasure, if you will.

Now, nearly everybody I've encountered as of late can boast some sort of active blog, a social networking account or a permanent mark on the online world — thanks to the uprising of interactive multimedia. This isn't to say each of these people is articulate and well-equipped with superior, or even mediocre, grammatical skills. In fact, I'm still not sure if many of them can arrange a written sentence properly — syntax just isn't one of their more redeeming qualities.

This leads me to my complaint.

Most people argue that new media dumbs people down. I'm just arguing that more dumb people have Internet access. While new media makes constant rebuttal quick and effortless, which somehow ended up in depreciate standards that hover somewhere near pitiful, the Web is no longer confined to those with outstanding resources. Some Internet users just should not be entitled to project their idiotic banter onto my hopeful eyes. While I'm not looking for constant genius via the Web, the times that I'd like to employ the "look, but don't touch" clause to the online world are growing exponentially. Somehow, anyone with access to a computer is on a level playing field, leaving those with a working brain destined to suffer.

I'm not talking about the preadolescent demographic who learned how to surf the Internet before they learned how to identify an adverb. I'm talking about real life college students who can't discern between there/their/they're or recall their last intelligent thought. The occasional slip-up is acceptable, but it's not even the simple grammar that gets me fuming. The content in the majority of posts, be it on Blogspot or Tumblr, lacks any indication of substance. I have to sift through the endless butchery of the English language to arrive at any meaningful commentary. I'm not quite sure when diarrhea of the fingertips became acceptable, as now it proliferates through the youth of America. Just because there is infinite space for viral garbage to lie, the level of sophistication need not turn to dust.

It's not uncommon for a routine background check to include an in-depth examination of a person's public profiles these days. Future employers don't inspect your online Web pages solely to see how well you enjoyed a Saturday night of inebriation at the fraternity house wearing less than the broads of "Jersey Shore." They look to see if you possess a shred of self-awareness and an ability to formulate an intelligent thought in a public setting. Thus far, as a population, we've failed miserably. For those of you that aren't even minimally articulate enough to create your own Web page, recognize this and keep sexting. At least that garbage stays private.

Our mere presence on these sites in ever-growing numbers is evidence that we've transformed into brainless narcissists, asserting our ideas and comments onto others whether they're interested or not — and it's likely the latter. We even managed to transform the Internet back to a high school combination of jealousy and superlatives through the birth of Tumblarity. No matter how controversial, perhaps the concept wasn't terribly flawed, as it didn't usually reward ubiquitous idiocy.

So what makes me a viable candidate to throw my mind into the blogosphere ring? Am I worthy because I can arrange syntax in a sensibly articulate manner? Why couldn't I keep my labyrinth under wraps in my pretentious black Moleskin? In fact, I have a severe aversion to capital letters. For these reasons, I halfway regret posting my newly activated Tumblr to my private — but not really private — Facebook account last night. I feel guilty for tempting Internet users to feel compelled to follow me, but after all, maybe I'm not tempting anybody at all.

After all, I can always delete it.

Lauren Caruso is a Cook College senior majoring in journalism and media studies with a minor in environmental policy, institute and behavior.

Lauren Caruso

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