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21st Century Lesbian Trailer Trash

These are the mad musings of a middle aged woman, dyke, nurse, poet. I have a dog, a cat, a mobile home, and delusions of grandeur.

Location: California, United States

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


Probably not the post you expect. But it is the one that you will get.

A question on my favorite message board this week is about the differences between blogs and message boards.

Personally, I have found that blogs can build community just as easily as message boards. In many instances they may be better tools for community building.

The place where I haunt message boards is rather unusual in its organization. All message boards are hosted and hosts are required to visit their boards a minimum of 3 times weekly.

The downside is that the Terms of Service are extremely strict. As a member there, who knew I said "fuck" until I started my blog?

Also, we lesbians are so closely monitored that whenever we begin to have fun with the topic of sex, the moderators are all over us like white on rice. And while the Christian right is allowed to slam us at will, we have to play nice when we talk about them. Not so on NursePam's blog.

So, I'm curious. What got you started blogging? If you blog, do you visit message boards? And which do you prefer?

Do you think that blogs build community? Is that one of the reasons that you blog?


Blogger Syd said...

My reasons for starting to blog are boring, so i'll skip that.

Message boards were fun to me a few yrs ago, but I almost never visit one now. Most allow anonymity, which inspires people to act like assholes.

I doubt I'd last very long on the FUCKING board that you FUCKING mentioned. ;)

9:45 AM PDT  
Blogger just me said...

I started on message boards and the TOS burned me out. But then I have found a few boards that don't really have TOS (meaning I can swear as much as I want) so I still post on them. I blog because, for me it's more of a journal to remind myself that I am more than just a mom (or at least that was my original intent but somehow at least 1 of my blogs have turned very mommyish)I need to get back to the root of my blogging, I miss knowing that I am more than just a mom, I miss writing about my life and thoughts outside of being that. Thanks for the reminder.
And not all message boards boards are bad after all I found you ;)

11:24 AM PDT  
Blogger KMae said...

A well, I started to forget stuff I thought & did each month, each year. Maybe it's more like I'm just too tired to remember. Also I knew that sometimes I am funny.

I must say I have grown to love reading my favorite bloggers! Since moving to the burbs 10yrs ago, I now live my life in such a het world. So it is excellent to read & pick other lesbian's brains. It's an easy way to just 'hang' with dykes for a while.

5:46 PM PDT  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

I seem to always get thrown out of message boards so I never go. As Syd said, because people can be anonymous they tend to be assholes.

I think blogging builds a better community because it's much easier to connect with like minded folks. And then you have same people who show up in the comments of certain blog circles, like Kmae. She's everywhere! Every-fucking-where!

Kmae you're being much too humble. You're almost always funny.

6:18 AM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

HA! Syd! I would love to see you over on LL for one day. That's about as long as you would last before they yanked your membership ;^) And that's one of the things I love about you.

Oh wow JM! I want to know where the message boards without TOS are.

Ah KMae, the aging brain is a wonderful thing. Now if we could only figure out how to forget that which we wished to forget and remember the rest.

You're right Elizabeth. People can be assholes on message boards. When I stepped down as a board host, it was a huge relief. Mostly, I got tired of getting slapped down when the women were just having fun being a bit risque. It was OK to talk about sex on the straight message boards. But let the lesbians talk sex and god help us they might start fucking right there on the message board.

7:17 AM PDT  
Blogger KMae said...

HAHA, Elizabeth!!!
Maybe I should give it a rest. But you ALL would miss me, I just know it. (healthy ego, no?)

8:33 AM PDT  
Blogger Junebugg said...

I've never fooled around the boards much but I love my blog. I use it for everything from venting to trying my hand at a little bit of creative writing.

Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment.

12:11 PM PDT  
Blogger Sandra said...

i have never visited a message board. i do think blogging builds community. i have definitely started to feel an extension of my real world circle since i started blogging. it's good to read about what others are up to and get to know them, at least at the level that they wish to share. it has also done something that for me that was unexpected. it has exposed me to a much broader range of perspective from people, in terms of intellect, education, ethnicity, sexual orientation and culture. i live in a diverse and progressive area in all of these things, but even so, once we settle into family creating and growing, it is easy to become confined to a smaller, less diverse group as we get drawn into the daily runaround. i love this aspect of blogging. i feel much more connected to the opportunity to meet people it is unlikely i would ever meet in my current social realm. i really think this is unique to the web in general. this one thing is what has really hooked me for good into the blog world. great post!

3:14 PM PDT  
Blogger SassyFemme said...

I more or less started blogging as self therapy after my parents died. I have a huge history with online forums, including messages boards. I don't think I've ever even put this up on my blog. For quite a while (mid 90's) I was a chat host and message board monitor in the GLCF and Destination FL forums on AOL, as well as the Family Computing Forum. I also helped found 3 forums (fora?) on the now defunct eWorld, and managed message boards as well as the chat rooms. TOS was just one of those things you had to deal with. Never really phased me much. I can write w/o cussing. I actually cuss more in my writing now than in my spoken word.

All that being said....
I LOVE message boards. The threaded dicussion, with subscription is what gives them the push ahead of blogs for me. While I realize blogs can do that to some extent, the older items scroll down out of site, and discussions quickly move to whatever the newer topic is. You have to go back into the comments to see if someone has said something new. There's not as much of an ability to carry on long term discussions and interactions on a single topic.

Do I still visit message boards? Yes, one from my online past. I mostly lurk. Quite honestly I'd love to have time to do more, but I'm really into my blogging friends, and would have to give that up for message boards, and that's not happening.

Do blogs build community? IMO, absolutely. I've found a community of friends that I never would have expected, including at least one whom I'm sure will be a life-long friend. Interestingly enough, like my real world, I find that I move in and out of different circles of blog groups, rather than one set type or group. I've also made some professional contacts, which was another unexpected bonus.

Sorry to be so long winded on your blog!

5:08 PM PDT  
Blogger ~ nellenelle said...

Before starting to blog, Denise and I danced around this one... but I've long since admitted my errant ways, heck had done that by last fall. Blogging can build community, and what is absent that is not on message boards is the trollish stuff. I won't have some jackarse misogynist slamming me directly, they would have to establish their own space to do it. Get near my blog, and well, hello goodbye, IP.

I started basically because of being royally pissed with Denise, and well... she told me *not* to blog because I'd never take it seriously. *cough*

Having a way to just get things out of my head is vital. Playing where you have, pammie... well, as stated in my own posting tonight, I've walked away from there, at least for a while. Out here, I own it, I say it. Doesn't mean my posts will be full of nasty stuff, but it does mean you get me, uncensored.

7:48 PM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

Hi Junebugg! You have the neatest blog :o) I love the title and the artwork in the header as much as I love reading your work.

What you say about blogging as a means of broadening your world and meeting people you wouldn't otherwise encounter is, I think, true for all of us Sandra. It seems to me that one of the beauties of the internet is that it levels the playing field in so many ways. How you look, what you earn, what causes people to judge you first off when meeting you IRL, is not there. People are free to let their hearts and souls shine through. It makes for some interesting and awesome friendships.

Blog on Sassy grrl! Be as long winded as you want ;^)

I wouldn't want to imply that I dislike message boards. I do have some issues with iVillage. But overall, I have watched some people grow tremendously during their message board years.

TOS, I believe, are necessary. It's when they are applied somewhat arbitrarily and according to the personal politics of those in power that I have a problem. But then life is like that isn't it?

BTW, I am capable of writing quite a bit without resorting to cussing. Just ask Nelle. LOL!

Nelle, I know pretty much where you are coming from. For the most part I stick to LL. Those political and hot topic boards just curl my toes.

7:32 AM PDT  
Blogger Vanda said...

Pam, you ok? Just wondering.

7:40 AM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

Are you psychic Vanda? I am just about to post on my little trip to the hospital yesterday. But yes. I'm OK :o)

8:11 AM PDT  
Blogger Little Blue Petal said...

I am not very interested in message boards anymore. Yes, I think they do form community of sorts, though they tend to become so cliquey that they are off-putting to anyone trying to join in. Often you have to trawl through alot of rubbish to get to interesting threads.
I much prefer blogs. You can easily find people who are like-minded and the communities formed seem very friendly and positive. At least, this is how I have found it so far.
I began my blog as a way of allowing friends and family abroad, to keep up with what I am doing (I am a horribly unreliable letter writer). I have, over the past few months, met some lovely people and had many good laughs through blogging! LBPx

7:09 PM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

Hi LBP! I just checked out your blog. Very nice. It looks like you have a lovely little spot across the Pond. I agree with some of what you say about message boards. Even if they are not overly cliquey, they seem to often scare people away by not pulling newbies into the fold. They look cliqueish even when they are not.

I have met some of the neatest people in the blogosphere.

11:06 AM PDT  

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