Free Speech in Blogging

There is a misconception among a lot of people about free speech. Being rude and terming it as “free speech” is common. Neither can abusive language be used and described as freedom to express. Free speech, at least to me, is the freedom to express my opinion and at the same time, it is expected that I respect the opinion of others. I may disagree, yes, but I should still respect an opinion. Free speech is the basic element of secularism. That’s what free speech is.

When exploited, this often takes a form of personal attack.

To me, a “personal attack” happens when the commenter goes completely off-topic and talks about something that is bound to offend the author, by means of personal allegations. This is often done using abusive language. There lies the difference between healthy criticism and being rude.

As a blogger, I have started to believe that there are always people who do not like what you say and are often against the stands taken. There is nothing wrong in that. But there are a few of them who are so obsessed about their own point of view that they start making personal attacks to prove their point and some even land in your inbox. That will remain. As a blogger, there is nothing much I can do about them.

Most people, readers and writers included, do not take blogging seriously. Some do. If you happen to be one of those who takes it seriously, my advice to you is this — Be prepared to take criticism in your stride as well. When I say “criticism”, I mean criticism of things that you do not like to be talked negatively about. If you don’t, you are the kind of person I would like to stay away from.

If you happen to be one of those who don’t take all this so seriously, my advice is — Listen to U2 and Chill ;)

Like many other blog authors, I may not talk about all the pleasant things in life or use this medium to discuss my favourite colour. It is only a matter of time that you may disagree with one thing or the other I talk about. When that happens, dear Reader, treat it as my opinion and bear with it. Why? Because I bear with and respect, yours.

And there are, of course, ways to convey your displeasure without being rude and nasty.

6 thoughts on “Free Speech in Blogging

  1. Hi, just thought I’d drop by to say hi. Haven’t heard from you for a bit.

    Re: nasty people, some people just have too much time on their hands. I mean seriously, why should anyone apend so much energy (and being nasty does command emotional energy if not physical)into leaving nasty comments on people’s blogs? I never get that.

    Btw, I am certain at some point in time, I may have discussed my favourite colour on my blog. I am so trivial that way…

  2. The sole purpose of my blog is to discuss my favorite colour (which is purple btw). Nobody seems to have a problem with that, have had no personal attacks from purple-haters. I like it that way :)

  3. Havnt come across who has tried to criticize in a bad way (touch wood)
    But there has been healthy debates abt personal views and opinons.

    I guess the best way to deal with it is to simply ignore such peple.

  4. What if an unhealthy comment is meant to dispose your original thoughts on the post concerned and make you think (or blog) differently? Wouldn’t that be a sort of an achievment or response expected in the first place? Why bother about some numb-nut’s comment or reaction in the first place? Its your opinion, may be the truth, may not be. As long as you are contented by your post, inspired to write more and are able to explore what other think without affecting how you blog or write, you should keep blogging :)

  5. A very good point, very well made. We should all learnt to respect
    another person’s point of view. And on the other side, those who make
    their points also should stick to limits of decency. After all,
    blogs are in the public domain.

  6. [All] There is nothing wrong in discussing your fav colour on the blog. I have done posts like that myself. Just that when I think about things that concern me, I feel the other things are small, trivial. Thats all :)

    You know what, I think the people who I know read my blog are pleasant people to know, nice people to be with, to listen to. So thanks :)

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