Just as I was getting over the embarassment (and mild annoyance) of having to defend myself for not having posted an entry for a couple of weeks, I saw Ross Mayfield wonder aloud what had happened to me.
It was purely coincidental that my last post tried to explore the difference between institutional and personal speech. But Ross does highlight some of the issues I've found nagging at me over the last few weeks.
Now that I know more people are watching what I post, I'm more hesitant to post informally. I want to, but it seems risky at a personal level. This is interesting to me, because I don't find it risky at an institutional level -- meaning, I find I'm not that worried about the issue I raised in my last post. I'm more worried that I'll post something here that isn't terribly interesting or significant.
Therefore, I want to spend more time thinking about what I post. We're all busy, and it turns out that I haven't had a great deal of time in the last few weeks. Hence, no post.
Ross does identify something of particular and different value in blogging: the exact informal, un-edited, and maybe not terribly-well thought out aspect of what gets posted. It actually reminds me of that peculiar fascination I have with watching live TV news during a developing situation. You sometimes pick up early reports of things that you never hear about later. It could be that those early reports were not based in fact -- or it could be that the evidence was ephemeral and was swept away before it could be more widely verified. It seems a shame that those early reports are effectively lost.
So blogs don't have to be perfect, or even try to be. There is value in their imperfectness. Maybe it's all about wabi-sabi.
I agree that it would be a shame if I were held to be somehow institutionally responsible for statements I make here. A standard disclaimer, in a very easy to understand form like the Creative Commons licenses, would be great.
In the meantime, in case anybody is confused, the statements I make here are my own opinion, and do not necessarily reflect the views of any organization I'm involved with. And the title of this post is one of my earliest memories of a not-so-convincing disclaimer.