April 18, 2008

Is This Really News? [2:18 pm]

Or is this just an excuse for the Times to wallow in the mud with everyone else who’s fixated on Tricia Walsh Smith’s video? When the Ex Blogs, the Dirtiest Laundry Is Aired

[I]n an era when more than one in 10 adult Internet users in the United States have blogs, according to the Pew Internet and American Life Project, many people are using the Web to tell their side of a marital saga. Despite the legal end of a marriage, the confessions can stretch toward eternity in a steady stream of enraged or despondent postings.

In separation, of course, one person’s truth can be another’s lie. Often the postings are furtive. But even when the ex-spouse is well aware that he or she is starring in a blog and sues to stop it, recent rulings in New York and Vermont have showed the courts reluctant to intervene.

For the blogger, the writing can be therapeutic.

Well, yeah, but so what? The only real point to me is this bit, which is already part of the “presumption of privacy in plain sight” issue of internet posting:

There will certainly be consequences down the line of all this sharing. “The long-term impact of the persistent information on line has not been fully felt,” [Pew researcher Mary] Madden said.

“People tend to think that they are blogging for a small group of friends or that they are anonymous,” she said. But that is not really the case, she said, because “all it takes is one friend posting a link to your blog to out you.”

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