No, not really. Just worn out. I couldn’t sleep last night, and with all the crap that has gone on the last couple days concerning the ‘flats, I am emotionally spent.
First, the good news. AKM has posted! I knew that she would eventually, but I just wasn’t sure when. AKM is pushing on, and we will all be right there, flanking her. I’ll even wear black and sunglasses and fold my arms sternly across my chest. Hey, I got the tats and the glare to back it up.
What? Why did I use my pseudonym in the title of this piece? Well, to make a point. Here it is. Oh, wait. First, read this post by pseudonym, Gryphen, who writes a blog called The Immoral Minority. It explains why he, Gryphen, thinks he, Doogan, did what he did. It pretty much parallels what I believe Doogan’s motives to be, and I’ll touch more on that later.
Anyway, back to why I used my pseudonym on this entry. Sit back and pop open a beer because the explanation will take a while–as is my wont. I have used asiangrrl or some variation thereof as my on-line handle ever since I was exposed to the world-wide webs. So, when I stumbled upon the ‘flats, the first political blog upon which I commented, it was natural for me to use that particular nomenclature. I threw on an MN to give a shout-out to my home state.
I dove in one day, and I didn’t look back. I was accepted into the community, and I soon grew to care about the community as a whole, and several of the commentors as individuals. It didn’t matter if I knew their given names or not, because even if I did, they would still be their on-line names to me. I got to the point where I could read certain comments and KNOW who had posted them, without looking at the usernames that accompanied said posts.
I didn’t need to know the name of any of these people to know which ones I would like in real life and which ones I might not like quite as much. In fact, I would say it’s a bit ludicrous to be braying about someone using a pseudonym on the web because we can’t see anyone on the other side of the computer, anyway. One of the blogs I read had a good point (don’t ask me which. They’ve all run together at this point). If AKM had called herself Zelda Tucker instead, this whole fiasco would never had happened. We would have addressed our comments to Zelda instead of AKM, but it wouldn’t have changed the essence of the dialogues that occur on the ‘flats.
There have been incidents on the net when a blogger has been proven to be, well, made up. In other words, someone took the time to create an on-line persona which had nothing to do with his or her own life and faithfully carried out this persona to the extreme degree. It’s as if this person is acting in a play that only s/he knows exists. When the person is inevitably discovered to be a fake, there is always an outcry of anger by the people who had been duped. While that is understandable, it’s also a bit silly given that anyone can lie on the internet.
Back to the case of the ‘flats. If I found out that AKM lived in Manhattan and was a Wall Street banker who was secretly laughing at her readers, I would feel betrayed. Her whole persona of AKM would have been a lie, and in that case, I would have supported outing her. In this case, though, she didn’t deserve to be outed because SHE wasn’t a lie. As I wrote on her blog entry, I didn’t have to know her name because I knew the person.
Let me tie this in with my placement of my pseudonym in the title of this piece. Those of you who have found me through the ‘flats have known me as asiangrrlMN. At various times, I have added “that one” and “Hussein” to my name. My gravatar is a picture of Margaret Cho. In other words, I was pretty much in the same position as AKM. Now, you know my name. I wrote it on the ‘flats in solidarity of AKM when she was outed, and I blog in my name.
If you know me from the ‘flats, you probably aren’t all that surprised by how I write. I am obviously more vulgar at times here than I am on the ‘flats, but the basic personality is the same. If you read one of my entries here, you most likely ‘hear’ my voice from the ‘flats. Since I have been fairly faithful representing myself on AKM’s site, my writing shouldn’t hit you out of the blue. So, now that you have a name to go with my persona, am I immediately more credible? Given the fact that you most likely don’t know me in real life, I would hazard a guess of…no. In fact, you most likely find my blog more credible because you knew me from the ‘flats, even if you didn’t know my name.
I want to cite (again) Whabs’ blog entry on pseudonyms vs. anonymous. She manages to be a tad more coherent than I in discussing this issue. It’s the lack of sleep, I tell you.
I struggled long and hard before deciding to blog under my name. My family is Christian, and I am anything-but. In the end, I decided that I had to use my name, for personal reasons. I have to emphasize that it was my choice. No one should take that choice away from someone.
Regardless, today is a better day than yesterday. AKM has posted; she will continue to post; she will always be AKM to me.
P.S. In a few minutes, I will be doing a second post on the hazards of being a female blogger. Stay tuned.