Wednesday, March 14, 2007

You Talk, I Talk, What?

Never speak of yourself to others; make them talk about themselves instead: therein lies the whole art of pleasing.- J.E de Goncourt

I came across this quote and I immediately thought of how much I talk about my children and our happenings. I guess I am not too pleasing according to this quote. :) Since we are not face to face, how about some pointers on how to get you, my friends, to talk about yourself? Now we flip this quote to your side, and you want me to talk about myself. Help! What do you think is the proper manner of speaking on a blog?


  1. This is just my opinion, but I think, by nature, blogs are NOT proper. The very word blog is an abbreviation for web log. In other words, blogs are private writing made public. There are no responsibilities. You can write pure fiction and present it as truth, as auto-biography, which is only the truth about self as one sees it. The only guides are your conscience and your relationship to God.

    Some blogs are written to keep in touch with family and friends. Fine, if you don't mind the world looking in. Anything you write is in the public record.

    Sometimes we make friends on blogs. Sometimes we get real close. Sometimes we tell the truth. But we must remember that people on the web are not under oath; they can lie their butts off, if they so choose. And in so doing, they have broken NO rules, because there are none.

    I've made no bones about the fact that I blog mainly to promote my writing. I'm fairly transparent as a person, both in my physical life and on the web. Sometimes I tell people more than they want to know. But then, I'm not afraid. God is my protection.

    But as to how to get others to tell you about themselves, it depends on what you want to know and from whom you want to know it. Do you want to get to know individual blog friends better? Or do you want to create a harmonious blog community? Are you interested in points of view that validate yours or challenge it? Do you want debate or to know how others have handled certain given situations?

    If you ask questions, which is one way to get to know others, expect answers. And realize, you might get more than you asked for.

  2. Hi,Helen. I agree with you that blogs, by nature, are not proper. There are no boundaries to them. Even so, I have found it enjoyable to read some blogs and it is a means by which my friends stay connected to me. I have many lurkers who I see at church or other places who comment to me about my blog but will never leave a written comment. Personally, I enjoy giving my point of view and having someone respond with theirs regardless of whether they agree or disagree with me. My husband and I often strike up conversations and "debate" even though we may both have the same opinion. It is eye-opening to understand other points of view. Maybe you could say I love playing the devil's advocate just for the sake of conversation. LOL

    I actually thought the quote was somewhat absurd. It was almost ignorant because it was so one-sided.

    Thanks for dropping by. I really do enjoy our "conversations."

  3. Jana:

    While I'm still new to this blog world, my impression is that you are supposed to talk about yourself on your blog. It's a way of sharing yourself with others and expression your opion about topics. It's different from an actual in person conversation with someone. I recently finished reading "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie. He advocates showing a genuine interest in others and getting them to talk about themselves. People, in general, do like to talk about themselves. Unless they are very private people. But I do believe conversation is meant to be 2-sided to be mutually beneficial. I think that the conversations Jesus had with people in the Bible were 2-sided, for the most part. Good thoughts!

  4. Karen - thanks for dropping by. My husband has the book you mentioned. I haven't yet read it although I am sure it is a great book. Not only should conversation be two-sided, but wouldn't it be a boring world without friendly communication?!