Why Do I Blog Publicly?

(The photo is my sfbadminton.org group playing a badminton tournament at Stanford)

Why Do I Blog Publicly?

Before I answer that question.   I will tell you who is the audience for my blog at tonytam.org.

Audience

I write the blog with me as the primary target audience.  The reason I write is to clarify and structure my thinking.  I write for my future self in 3 years, 5 year and 10 years to look back on what my thought process was today.  It is both to remember what was important to me in the past and process in which I arrive at decisions.

My secondary audience is my daughter, Cate.  I have been blogging for over 14 years, since March 2005 when she was 4 years old.  I started capturing my thoughts and interactions with her.  I want to show her future self what our life was like when she was young and how I was learning to be a single divorced father.  I wish to show her my thought process as a father.  To show her what kind of child she was to me. I wanted to show her how I struggled and learned as a father.  How I tried very hard to care for her as my daughter and most importantly as a  little human being.  To show her my own vulnerabilities.  To show her that it’s okay to be a faulty human being and still deserved to be loved. To show her how I made decision balancing her needs and my own needs as an individual outside of being her parent.

The third audience are the strangers on the internet, my acquaintances and my other family members who may find some of my blog posts ‘interesting’.  These readers are not my primary audience.  In this personal blog, I do not write for them.

Writing primarily for myself has allowed me the freedom to continue to write without worry about judgement or lack of interest.

Why Write Publicly?

So why not write in a private journal?  In Evernote, Google Docs and keep my thought private?  First of all WordPress allows for very rich content management and presentation.  I get inspired when I can add photos to my own content.  WordPress offers sorting, search by date.  I can category blog posts into multiple categories and tag my content.

Still, why write in a public blog and not a private, hidden blog?

Accountability

Writing publicly make me accountable to .. myself!  Having a private blog, which I also do for very private thoughts, does not help encourage me to write regularly.  Publishing my blog publicly helps me keep on writing and keep on sharing.

Even though ‘strangers or my acquaintances’ are not my primary audience, they are the community that help me be accountable.  This is very much like having an exercise buddy helps people get up and go to the gym.

Thank you readers!

 

Tony Tam

Senior Principal Architect @ Splunk Founder of ImpactfulEngineer.org & SFBadminton.org