Today I received WordPress’ ‘One Month Anniversary’ email. It goes like this:
My name’s Anne and on behalf of everyone here, happy one-month anniversary.
I’ve always found it funny when couples celebrated monthly anniversaries together. But today I want to share something that may be of value to you.
*X self-promotion here*
I’ve always found it funny… Of course that phrase is the typical introduction to a blog post. Of course it is. It’s one of those clichés you use to justify writing about whatever the fuck you feel like. E.g:
‘I’ve always found it funny how people have legs. I couldn’t figure out why, so I tried using them to test if they have secondary utilities. I started rolling around on the floor waving them wildly, and at one point they hit a cupboard and my high-heels fell over from my drag-queen days. Sexuality. Now there’s a funny thing.’
… Then if you’re any good you’ll end the piece with a revelation, that legs are used for, whatever… Kicking hobos (like me).
It’s like Sitcom writing. A Simpson’s episode. Springfield sues Mr Burns for pollution. The community can use the money as they please, a conman convinces them to invest in a monorail, and then, we get a disaster movie parody.
Pollution, to ‘Speed’. It’s full of tangents, the intro is utterly irrelevant (and may be catchy), and the ending rounds off whatever madness’ been created so the plot seems coherent.
This is Anne’s introduction. Couples celebrate anniversaries, to bloggers can spend 35 USD for a custom web address.
The fact that this is Worpress’ advertising does make it further apparent just how bizarre an environment this website / blogging-scene really is. Consider, there’s further motive to the one-month advertisement thing.
I’ve always found it funny… is doing two things. The obvious, is that it’s just catching your eye. I read the email because I was struck by the question what’s this crazy woman writing about, and this brought me far enough to start reading into the advertisement.
The second is more interesting.
Keep in mind, the email is celebrating a total non-event. Rather, this was a non-event. By naming it, by pointing it out, it’s making you think back on your month. More specifically, it want so you to write about your month’s experience.
Same goes for the random mention of couples. Couple-writing is popular. Maybe you think back to some past one-month anniversary of your own. Like the time you two celebrated with sex, and she asked you what she should do with her legs during the act.
There’s something to think about. There’s a thought.
This, this shit right here – is an economy, of thought.
We’re all placing upon ourselves obscure goals. Write a story every day, create a hundred posts, et cetera. You cannot naturally write this much. You cannot naturally think this much. Well… You can, you should, but all of your thoughts should not be presentable. We all fear, we dread, we fight ‘writer’s block’ (which, I insist, is not a real thing. Someone named it and its symptoms, and now everyone complains they have it, like it’s a credible condition).
Everyday I log onto this website I see a daily one-word prompt. Today it is ‘precipice’. The page for The Daily Post has a tagline: ‘The art and craft of blogging’.
This, the economy of thought, goes straight against the wise philosophy, that nobody cares what you think. Do not be deceived by this website, friends – still nobody cares.
I get the creeping feeling that we’ve all been sold money, which is a con I’ve written about before. Dedicate yourself to this blogging, and you can turn your thoughts into money! Dedicate yourself to this, dedicate yourself.
When I decided to start on this game, I took a look at a handful of articles explaining how to begin.
‘First thing’s first. You need to get your custom URL, and rent your own domain. It’ll show people you’re serious.’ – Amy Lynn Andrews
I don’t know about any of you, but I can’t recall having ever looked at someone’s URL. This wasn’t from Wordpress’ official guide or something of the sort. No, this was advice shared by countless regular (notably, successful) bloggers.
Truth be told I still haven’t figured this one out. It’s obviously bogus advice. I’m just not seeing how it benefits the bloggers. I may be studying the situation with some sort of survivor bias. These bloggers are the ones who dedicated themselves enough to get big. They are the survivors, and therefore they are the only ones I can study. Conceivably, they started off reading official guides and such, and they themselves immediately got their custom URL. It’s what they know, so they advise others to do the same.
It reminds me of my run in with It Works!, a pyramid scheme my friend got caught up in. She challenged me to look up videos, blogs et cetera about specifically this company (since I was focusing exclusively on their business model. She insisted it was different to other MLMs / Pyramid schemes).
I Googled: ‘Should I join It Works’, and the first result is a video:
It Works Distributor Reviews and My Reasons for Quitting It Works Global!
I smiled smugly and opened it up. It’s a vlog from just some average-looking fellow in his car. He occasionally rolls his hands towards the camera in the vlog-y ‘I’m being sincere‘ kind of way.
‘Guys! It Works Global, great company! Stick with it, stay with it… If you choose to another thing, that’s fine… But if you’re thinking about joining, join the company.’
^ Actual quote from the video.
It’s similar to the Worpress ‘buy our URL’. It’s the successful ones who are speaking. The ones at the top of the pyramid. Consider further, the majority of readers here are, other bloggers. I’m astonished to now have 9 ‘followers’ (that word is also a scam) despite having made no communication on this website. But, I found quickly that it’s just a habit here, that if you follow someone they’re likely to read your posts, or follow you back out of courtesy. Three of my followers are actually just small companies who it seems just follow small bloggers who are likely to look at the page of their new followers (said page is just an advertisement).
^ But… I’m complaining too much.
Let me step away from all this at the moment.
Blogging is way-cool.
Seriously, I enjoy having something to write. Writing like this is much easier than sitting down and focusing on a novel, or a story – which, I tell you, is mentally exhausting work.
As for the reader’s perspective… I can find whatever ridiculously niche article I like, because blogging exists.
Blogging is a natural part of the internet. Just like vlogging. WordPress (et cetera) just put a line around it and sold it back to you, with advertisements everywhere.
This isn’t the worst thing either… They’ve given a handful of conveniences to readers and bloggers, which would be impossible in any weird anarchy-style internet. Capitalism does this, companies do this: give conveniences.
What I fear, and what I’m talking about…
Is Anne’s reminder that I’m a one-month blogger.
Is Anne’s chirpy little it’s funny how.
I don’t know you, Anne. I don’t know Amy Lynn Andrews, who advised my to pay for a custom URL from the get-go. I can’t tell if Cristian Mihai read my post and decided to follow my blog, or if he was just following me so I’d see that I can pay him 30 dollars to have him showcase my work.
This has created an insincere environment. A self-functioning lie. A playground for thieves.
These environments are only ever temporary. The company is failing so they hire workers by convincing them of the American dream. The workers deceive themselves because they might get rich. They repeat their motto and at the ring of a bell they make an obligatory hi-five every day at 3 p.m.
The company hasn’t stopped failing. Lies don’t last forever. Only a handful make it out alive.
Maybe another lie will replace that company. The ones on top of it all, the ones who escaped alive, will leap from tower to tower, lie-to-lie. The hi-five(ers) get left behind everytime. Before the company goes you get all sorts of proxy leaders promoted to run the crumbling tower.
As for what this has to do with blogging… You. Yeah, you. ARE WE GONNA BE ONE O’ THOSE CHUMPS?! NAAAAAH! WE GONNA BE ONE O’ THE SKIPPERS. THE JUMPERS. WE’LL BE DIFFERENT! I’M SURE! I’M SURE! NOW GIVE ME A HI-FIVE.
I wonder if the cycle is ceaseless. If the jumpers can keep skipping to the next tower.
Or if one day, it’ll all come crumbling down. And the jumpers finally kick the bucket… You know, fire is prettier at night.
And don’t you know, kicking the bucket – isn’t that what legs are for?