It's Friend Friday, and this week's topic is blogger privacy. Since I'm working on a screenplay about a blogger with a stalker, this topic is of huge interest to me!
1. Do you think privacy is something we should worry about as bloggers?
The beauty of blogs is that it's really up to the author how much privacy she wants. Adored Austin started off as a place where my friends and family and my Austin acquaintances could keep up with me online and learn more about the fashion happenings in town. I was never concerned about my privacy because I initially thought that the only people that would come here would just be people I knew in real life! I was pleasantly surprised that this wasn't at all the case, but nonetheless, the tone of this is and will always be a personal, self-style diary. With that comes a willingness to give up some privacy.
Someone else may think that I'm way too laid back about my online privacy. After all, I'm all over the web: Vimeo, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Gowalla, Foursquare, Tumblr, IMDb, etc. (note: I'm totally into geolocation sites like Foursquare because quite a few times I've put in where I am and I've met a reader! I love making my internet friends my in real life friends!). Also, I fully expect to have a mom-blog and post photos of my kid. I suppose it'd be very easy for someone to pull all the details from each of my public profiles and figure out stuff about me. This doesn't freak me out, but I get that it freaks others out. I'm actually writing a suspense/ horror movie about a blogger with a stalker! But, c'mon. How common are stalkers for non-celebrities? Not very.
Hubs, who works in the tech field and knows a thing or two about internet security, is way more concerned about all this than I am. There have been times when he has checked my blog from work and has called me to tell me I need to edit a photo to remove private information (such as when I posted an unedited photo of my traffic ticket or when I posted a photo of my new business cards with my phone number on it). Whoops!
2. Do you use your real name or a pen name? What was behind that decision?
No one, except for my grandma, calls me by my real name. I use the name that people call me, and it's the same name I use for acting and my screenplay work. It's a nickname that I've gone by for a long, long, long time, and it feels more real to me than my real name. I'm not going to have my first name legally changed to Indiana, but I do operate with an assumed name license and a DBA for "Indiana Adams".
3. How much personal information do you reveal about your life beyond the blog?
I actually have three blogs and Adored Austin is surprisingly the only one where I stick to a strict editorial guideline of semi-superficiality. On this blog, I usually only write about what I'm wearing, what I'm doing, what I'm digging in the fashion/ shopping world, and what's happening around Austin. I'll reveal most everything about myself so long as it has to do with one of those four things.
4. What will you never reveal?
Hubs has asked me to not reveal his real name on the blog, however, if you meet us in public, I will introduce him by his name and not "Hubs". I also have a very strict rule of "NO DIRTY LAUNDRY" on Adored Austin. This is both literal and figurative. Any woes I have concerning non-fashion things will remain off this site.
5. As bloggers, we have to an extent made ourselves 'public' figures. But still there are things that are intimate to each of us that does not need to be known by anyone that stumbles across our blog. How do you determine what is appropriate for public consumption and what is private to you?
I write exactly how I talk to my best friend, but that does not mean I reveal all things on here that I would reveal to her. This blog is a public place, and I do truly consider the people that come here regularly my friends. So what do friends talk about in public places? They usually keep the conversation lighthearted and fun. Topics don't get too hot-button, and the dirty laundry stays out of sight.
Following my other blogs, however, is a totally different story. With The Wonder Love, I'm actually even considering live Tweeting on the big birth day! Can you imagine? "MY WATER BROKE!" My family lives far away, and the 'net is a wonderful tool for us to stay connected. If others choose to join the ride, that's cool with me, too.
If you have a blog, what's your stance on blogger privacy? If you don't, do you think I reveal too much about myself here?
To participate in Friend Friday, visit Katy's blog Modly Chic for details.