This Site Is Not Yet Rated
The Internet is emerging as a new meta-human entity, consisting of all our millions of interactions, IMs, clicktrails, blogposts, and memories. Those of us with links into this e-self are fast feeling the blurring of identity between our cyberselves and our selves, as it were. The rest, by far still the larger component of humanity, who are not 'living online' find it hard to fathom the intensity and passion with which we invest our online identities, and in some cases, the unconnected are willing to stifle the e-connected.
A few months back I asked an online friend of mine to help me out with some codes on my site. I gave him the password of my site and told him to treat my third child gently. He laughed but knew I was serious.
Today I am fighting tooth and nail to keep my personal site going. Some understand the trauma I am going through to maintain my online identity and others merely consider it to be an frivolous little episode that I am over dramatizing.
My entire life is on my site's virtual pages. I have no visions of grandeur regarding my site but it upsets me to no end when people expect me to kill a part of myself that has sustained me for five long years of living abroad without any family and close friends.
For some, the Internet is a subservient entertainment tool, they see porn, get some news, read their mails, visit a few chats rooms, read some blogs and move on to other things in the external world.
But then there are those of us who have formed lasting friendships online, we are members of communities and have our identities associated with our web pages that may not be avidly read but are precious to us. To be told to wind up and lead quiet lives as we did before the Self Publishing concept came up is akin to killing our very souls.
Even in the online world we are pigeonholed into categories that don't really fit our profiles.
When Google got the 'Flag this site' button on Blogspot I shifted from there to start my own site on Movable Type. My readership suffered and it took me two years to build my Page Rank and re-gain the recognition. It was a long tedious journey and then to make matter worse I found a 'porno' label on my site due to a few 'explicit stories' and classy photographs of nude women.
That's when the trouble started. Not that people or Google took notice of all the non-erotica stuff on my site that outweighed the few pictures and occasional stories but it was these little titbits that had the Scarlet letter painted over my site.
A few days ago on Stumbleupon I happened to read a Stumbler protest that her site was 'R' rated and not 'X' rated as stumbled. I laughed; for most there is hardly any difference between the two - R or X, soft or hard; does it matter? Its all a matter of perception, whether its by artificial intelligence or by regular human beings.
Here is the other twist - Google doesn't give good ads, dumps shitty traffic on sites it deems 'raunchy'. To make matters worse these search engines themselves are becoming keepers of morality.
As of now I am deeply troubled and wondering if at all this really worth fighting for. Wouldn't it be easy for me to just smother the voice within me and be part of the herd? But the very thought of never blogging again or giving up my site brings tears to my eyes. Am I the only one feeling like this? Maybe I am a Drama Queen after all.
This Site Is Not Yet Rated
- » Published on November 20, 2007
- » Type: Opinion
- » Filed under: