Bloggers may well wield power to change world

"I like to inject some humour, if for no other reason than to lighten the debate." Photo by Craig...
"I like to inject some humour, if for no other reason than to lighten the debate." Photo by Craig Baxter.
Christmas and New Year is the period when those who can, ponder on the year past, and make preposterous resolutions to change or do things to make life for those around us better.

After much consideration, I have decided to "come out".

Yes, out of the closet.

"I am a Blogger".

There, I have said it.

The admission is palpable.

Nothing is worse than a furtive closet blogger.

We are compulsive commentators, expert on any subject and ever ready to express an opinion.

In a word, insufferable.

And we mix metaphorically with equally insufferable bloggers.

We might blog under our own name, or use nom de plumes, some as ridiculous as the people behind them.

It's a universal phenomenon, with more sites than there are stars in the universe.

Being a timorous type, I stick to our local sites and local issues.

Facebook abounds with opinionated people all wanting to be everyone's friend.

Strange that, because, dropped into a room of strangers, most people are reluctant to instantly open up their souls.

Our own Otago Daily Times has an online site which at times gets an amazing array of opinions on almost any subject which crops up.

Another is the "Whatifdunedin" site which has an array of very strong commentators.

During the run up to the recent elections there was a Facebook site fabulously called "The DCC has lost the plot."

If every elector in Dunedin had tuned in to that one the election may well have turned out differently.

There are many more.

Why do I do it? I don't know.

Maybe it is an ego thing, or the subconscious wishes of a failed journalist.

If the issue has import, it brings forth comments, some thoughtful and constructive, some not so, and some just plain stupid.

Some people take themselves very seriously and bristle at criticism.

Others ignore opinions as though they didn't exist, some acknowledge and counter.

Some have such a rudimentary grasp of the English language that you would wonder how they could understand any issue at all.

We have the aggressively rude, inarticulate bully types who try to impose their will.

In essence, all sorts, and that is what makes it so interesting.

I like to inject some humour, if for no other reason than to lighten the debate.

It is surprising how humourless some can be and take everything as deadly serious.

Those who should take blogs seriously are politicians.

When it comes to politics, I believe in time the websites will develop great power to influence society, for better or worse.

Probably the latter.

I like words.

Words and their connections fascinate me.

Blogging is an avenue to articulate and indeed, if the moment presents, pontificate.

That in itself can ruffle some people.

I have favourite words I carry around in a small bag, much like I did my marbles as a boy.

If the opportunity arises I will pull out the ones applicable.

My best one seldom sees the light of day.


It is strong, unambiguous, almost expletive.

I love it.

Nutty eh? So you see, bloggers, at least this one, need to be slightly odd, bordering on the, "gee he's weird".

Perhaps, on reflection, I should return to my closet.

But don't let that put you off.

Have a go, have a blog.

You won't regret it, and who knows, you might just get hooked and change the world.

Calvin Oaten is a Dunedin ratepayer.



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