This is precisely my dilemma on blogging. While I readily admit I lurk, skulk, and generally move under the radar by not giving out my blog url, I still feel this bizarre accountability to post on a semi-regular basis. I also readily admit that because this blog is under the auspices of Penn State, I am more careful about what I post than on my other, more personal, non-PSU affiliated blog. Coworkers might see it. God forbid, those people who really do have their fingers on Penn State’s technology pulse (and on whose sites I frequently lurk) might actually read it. And while it has never happened yet, what if–heart in my throat–someone actually COMMENTS on one of my posts? This is obviously fodder for a full session on some therapist’s couch.
Nonetheless, I have taken baby steps towards coming out of the closet. Recently I put my personal space url in my email signature. Whoa. Talk about brave. One small step for mankind, one giant leap for me. I still maintain I don’t say much that is useful; personal insights, random commentary, nothing earth shattering to the world. However, I do wonder if, when PSU offers the option of having your blog listed in a directory, I might have enough gumption to opt in. After all, they haven’t taken away my web membership card yet. In for a penny, in for a pound.
One last observation: at work, they’ve prepared a tech survey for us to fill out. Totally anonymous. However, they’ve also asked that if we have a blog, a wiki, a website, that we give them a url of a sample we have done. Am I crazy, or doesn’t that totally negate the concept of anonymity? In fact, not only am I giving you proof that I have used the technology, I am telling you who I am — and sharing, perhaps, more than I want to share in a professional environment. And so I did the only rational thing I could, given my choices: I gave them my PSU site, blog, and internal wiki postings. Because, while I may well decide to put my thoughts out in cyber space, I am relatively careful choosing to whom I direct those thoughts. Personal stays personal. Professional stays impersonal. Names and details are sketchy at best to protect my family.
Of course, now I’ll have to post something else. Soon.