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Is Blogging For Self-Centred Nerds?

Last Thursday, I attended the board meeting for Ministry Today, the small journal for church leaders on which I serve. I came away with a few tasks – four more books to review, someone to contact, and a couple of articles to write.

One of those articles is to address the title of this post. So I thought I’d enlist the help of friends who read this blog. What would you say in response this question? I’d love to incorporate the thoughts of several Christian bloggers into the final piece. If I quote you, I shall credit you and footnote your blog in the article. Just bear in mind I’ve been asked more to address the ‘why’ of blogging than the ‘how’.

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About Dave Faulkner

I'm a British Methodist minister, married with two children. I blog from a moderate evangelical-missional-charismatic perspective, with an interest in the 'missional' approach. My interests include Web 2.0, digital photography, contemporary music and watching football (Tottenham Hotspur) and cricket.

Posted on February 26, 2008, in Religion, Weblogs. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I was at a meeting once when someone expressed this view and another friend of mine was trying to get the person to be quiet because she knew I blogged.

    I think that a lot of people don’t understand that blogging is interactive.

    If you asked someone whether they would enjoy having a ‘conversation’ about theology with other people by email and they say ‘yes’ then they might like blogging. Others don’t like written media and are unlikely to be convinced by blogging.

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  2. Dave,

    I think the question is slightly unhelpful.

    Just because there are blogs by self-centred nerds does not mean that all bloggers are self-centred nerds.

    I agree it is hard to claim that someone who titles their blog “42: My life, the universe and everything” is not self-centred, but when I last took one of those “nerd” quizes I am pretty sure that I was only 90% a nerd.

    Seriously I think Pam makes good points and I would say there are plenty of blogs I read that are neither self-centred (indeed they can be a very powerful tool for non self-centred campaigns) nor nerdy. Some examples I would use would be

    Olive Morgan: http://octomusings.blogspot.com/

    Thackerly Methodist Church: http://thackleymethodist.blogspot.com/

    faith and Theology: http://faith-theology.blogspot.com/

    Make Wealth History: http://makewealthhistory.org/

    On a non faith basis consider:

    One Less Van: http://onelessvan.blogspot.com/

    BBC News Front Page, UK Edition: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/-/1/hi/default.stm

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  3. Dave,

    I think the question is slightly unhelpful.

    Just because there are blogs by self-centred nerds does not mean that all bloggers are self-centred nerds.

    I agree it is hard to claim that someone who titles their blog “42: My life, the universe and everything” is not self-centred, but when I last took one of those “nerd” quizes I am pretty sure that I was only 90% a nerd.

    Seriously I think Pam makes good points and I would say there are plenty of blogs I read that are neither self-centred (indeed they can be a very powerful tool for non self-centred campaigns) nor nerdy. Some examples I would use would be

    – Olive Morgan: Octomusings.
    – Thackerly Methodist Church.
    – Faith and Theology
    – Make Wealth History

    On a non faith basis consider:

    – One Less Van
    – BBC News Front Page, UK Edition

    No links to get this past the spam filter, all are in my blogroll if interested.

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  4. Dave,

    You’re right, the question is slightly unhelpful. However, it’s what the Chair of our board gave me as a title! It reflects those who know little of the blogging world and have only heard other prejudiced opinions of it. But it does give an opportunity to state the case for constructive Christian blogging. That’s what I’d like to do, in collaboration with anybody who wishes to comment here.

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  5. Thanks for the mention. I see blogging as the best way to spread important information of all kinds and it is also good to lift people’s spirits by sharing laughter. Before the server Modblog ‘died on me’, my blogging was wholly geared to spreading the Good News of Jesus and helping young bloggers with their problems.

    Recently I was musing about the impression given when you visit different blogs, because there are some that scream out at you that self-advertising is their main object, while others are much more self-effacing. With these thoughts in mind, I even toyed with the idea of making my photograph smaller (but didn’t bother)!

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  6. Dave – If you are going to quote my mention of my earlier blogging with Modblog, I ought to add that during that period I felt that I was spreading the Gospel more widely (by just responding in normal conversation and occasionally posting a prayer) than at any time in my life. How else could I have known, let alone helped, the then 25-year-old who escaped the 9/11 bombings but was suffering dreadfully from post traumatic stress four years later? That is but one example. I looked on it as a very powerful ministry, and have not yet found a satisfactory way to keep in contact with younger bloggers. Blogspot enables me to exchange posts with (mainly) Methodist bloggers, but there is still an ache in my heart that all of us on Blogspot are missing the vast mission field of a generation as yet scarcely touched by the Good News. That was the reason why I began to blog. It is not why I am blogging now – which is to share what I consider to be imporant information amongst fellow Christians. Good as that may be, I can’t feel that this is how God is calling me to make the maximum use of blogging.

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