Let your blog speak out for you
Blog world is an exciting place to be.
The blogging community is going strong, and so is the student blogger community. While blogging has become one of the most common yet complicated functions online, student blogs have never been more prolific.
Complicated not because it is hard to set up a blog (at any rate there are millions of sites which tell you how to go about it). Complicated because of the reasons for which students blog these days.
These reasons are many: they may truthfully chronicle each day as in a diary or write out of a creative impulse. Students use their blogs to reach out to cricket buffs, movie enthusiasts, techies, business mates, fellow students, automobile lovers etc.
Some other students write political blogs inviting polemical discussions. Whatever they may be blogs are no longer what they used to be.
"We are a blogging community in Indian School of Business (ISB), my batch has 24 other bloggers like me," says Bharanidharan, a student of ISB. He characterises his blog as a blog of a business student who is not comfortable with academic set-ups.
When bloggers started out, they simply saw their blogs as places they could relax, write without inhibitions. "Now however, you have to be careful about what you write especially if you are working or if you are studying. The people who read your blog are people you know. They tend to read between the lines," says Bharanidharan.
If you are working, you can lose your job over your blog, if you are not careful about the things you write about your company; the word for it is `dooced,' says another student blogger, Biswajit Das.
Even if you write something inflammatory about another company or institution, employees run a high risk of losing their job. For instance, Gourav Sabnis, an IBM employee had used his blog linking an article about the dubious claims that the Indian Institute of Public Management made in advertisement. IIPM sent him a legal notice and pressured IBM into making Gourav resign over the entries he made in his blog.
Bharanidharan says, "I first wrote about it in my blog, but later I removed the post. After all, I can't risk getting dismissed," he says. If you want to write on controversial things, the way out, of course is to write anonymously in your own blog. But then you will lose credibility if you do that," he says.
Ramkumar, another ISB student says he came to know about ISB through alumni blogs. "Though the website had a lot of information about ISB, I got to know much more through alumni blogs: student life, the institution, the faculty etc."
While the alumni blogs in ISB are individual ones, Kendriya Vidyalaya School, Picket has a collaborative alumni blog. Salil Khader who studies in Hyderabad Central University contributes to this blog. He says, "This is the only one of its kind in India. We use our blog to catch up with celebrity alumni." He adds that blogs score over online groups as there is more freedom to write what you want here. There is rarely a moderator, he says.
Biswajit Das who contributes to the blog of Kendriya Vidyalaya School, Picket says, "Though we are also starting an alumni online group and website, the collaborative blog has been more popular for the simple reason that it is a new concept."
These other reasons notwithstanding, people continue to write blogs for personal reasons. And for the pleasure of reading a comment by someone from the other end of the globe. "It felt so good when I met someone in Singapore who read my blog," says Ramkumar. I am in touch with fellow business bloggers in the Indian Institutes of Management and in the University of Chicago, says Vijay Mulbagal, another ISB blogger.
Ameya who passed out this year from the Central Institute of English and Foreign Languages (CIEFL) says, "My blog is intensely personal. Only two or three of my friends know my blog address. I do not respond to other student bloggers, or raise any political comment in my blog. I use it for personal reasons like putting up pictures of myself."
People continue to blog because they want to search their souls. Ask a blogger if he has changed over the years, "his blog will speak for him," says Biswajit.
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