Like a parent preparing a child for the first day of school, it takes nerve for any beginning blogger to gather together a few words, dress them up with an image or two and send them off to fend for themselves in the big, wide world. It’s an anxious and uncertain time. There’s no way to know how those young words will be received, and impossible to predict whether they will be accepted, ridiculed or ignored.
Parents know that some neighborhoods are tough and not everyone is kind. For every open smile and extended hand, there can be hidden agendas and mixed motives. Bloggers have to learn that, in the blogosphere as in the schoolyard, there are bullies as well as potential friends, trouble-makers as well as peace-makers. Programmers may tout the virtues of WYSIWYG, but sooner or later every blogger learns the hard lesson: what you see isn’t necessarily what you get. Continue reading