Friday, March 26, 2010

Is there such a thing as male or female blogging?

Susannah Breslin over at True/Slant has a post entitled Are men better bloggers than women? This is in response to another article asking why bloggers are usually men. Are they? I don't think so. Anyway, Breslin categorizes female bloggers into three categories:

For the most part, I’ve found, women bloggers fall into three categories: “mommybloggers,” “ladybloggers,” and “women who blog like men.” The first category includes those who have made careers out of writing about the perils of raising a family, being married, and getting stuff off the kitchen floor. The second category includes the group of blogs that self-describe as “feminist” and which seem to have decided that blogging about purportedly widespread sexism and instances of misogyny in our pop culture a neo-feminist movement makes (NB: it doesn’t). The third category includes those few women who blog about politics, technology, and other more “male” topics with a scathing wit and piercing gaze that put their male blogger rivals to shame.

Hmm, not sure which one I am. I'm a mom but don't blog about kids much, unless they are violent and I want to discuss their psychology. I blog about relationships and misandry, not about misogyny. I like blogging about politics but am not sure I "blog like a man" whatever that means. According to Breslin, blogging like a man has something to do with blogging on current events, heated debates, racy subjects, and avoiding feelings and relationships. I hope/think this blog blends both of these topics. We discuss relationships and feelings, but often in relation to justice, the law or politics. And yes, there are often heated debates, which I enjoy.

Does that make me an androgynous blogger?

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Blogger Francis W. Porretto said...

"Sexing" a blogger can be fun, but is usually profitless.

He who blogs about politics, economics, business, and similar matters of general interest will usually be taken for a man. He who blogs about personal matters and developments in his own life will usually be taken for a woman. And he who blogs about celebrities and pop idols will usually be taken for a teenaged girl. But what matters is who's interested in the subject matter of a blog. What's the sexual distribution of the blogger's audience? That will tell you a lot more about American demographics than the sex of the blogger him/her/itself.

4:58 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Helen said...

Francis W. Poretto,

That's interesting. The demographics for this blog from past surveys are around 75% men, 25% women.

5:10 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

TO: Susannah Breslin
RE: Uuuuhhh....

For the most part, I’ve found, women bloggers fall into three categories: “mommybloggers,” “ladybloggers,” and “women who blog like men.” -- Susannah Breslin, as cited by Dr. Helen

....I think you're missing at least ONE other category. Women who blog like B----es.

Or maybe you're using an euphemism with that last category.....

Then again, maybe there are men who blog like B----es.

For the most part, men...and I mean REAL men, aren't afraid to have people oppose them in the blogosphere. Indeed. They welcome such 'combat' of ideals and ideas. BUT, all too often, I encounter 'men' who are so afraid of such that they'll 'kill' their opponents on the blogospheric 'field-of-battle' rather than face them like men. Cases in point, Charles Johnson, Charlie (Colorado) Martin, Joe Katzman, and all their ilk. They like to think of themselves as 'open-minded' and 'liberal', but in reality, where the tread meets the pavement, they 'cave'.


....this brings up the question of just how 'manly' ARE you when you claim to 'blog like a man'.

Dr. Helen's more of a 'man'—in this sense—than Charlie (Colorado) Martin. And in my honestly held opinion, he and the others I mention (above) blog like B----es.


[The Truth never hurt anyone....except those opposed to it.]

5:11 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

P.S. If you're smart, you won't mention Amy Alkon, Rachal Lucas or that bimbo who 'manages' Tim Blair's site.....

5:14 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

P.P.S. I forget to mention Vox Day.....he 'killed' me after I came to the defense of a woman he was beating up on on his web-site.

And in a recent item at WorldNetDaily he 'claims' to welcome "ALL" there.

I e-mailed him about that 'claim'. He has yet to respond as to the validation thereof.....

5:17 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Unknown said...

Having seen pictures of you, let me reassure you, you are not androgynous. That aside, I think it's the manner of writing more than the topic and no, you definitely write with a womanly style.

5:26 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

TO: All
RE: Something....

....of an 'indicator'.

If you want to take this 'fight' to Susannah Breslin's door, as any man would be willing to do.... have to join her following on Facebook.

Well, I'm not stupid enough to become a statistic in her ego trip. And I note that the good doctor doesn't require such as part of the current registration policy. Although I think it would be good of her to allow for 'guest' posting of long as they had a valid e-mail address that didn't trace back to some fly-by-night outfit.

Maybe Susannah Breslin has the gonads to come here and engage. But I have serious doubts.


[Life is to be entered upon with courage. -- Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, c. 1835]

5:35 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Cham said...

I don't think my blog fits any of those 3 categories. Men can be just as pissy and sensitive as women, sometimes more so. I will say it does take a special person to maintain a blog over several years and still keep it interesting and worthwhile. Blogs are an interesting medium and if you read one's blog long enough you get some real insight into who they really are and not necessarily what they want you to think they are.

6:08 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Bob Sorensen said...

With the three categories set down, you do not belong in any of them. And I do not "blog like a man", either, for the most part.

We just go about our business without trying to grind some kind of gender axe.

6:27 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger DADvocate said...

There are two kinds of people. Those who think there are two kinds of people and those who don't. Or, those who think there are three or more kinds of people.

Helen, I see you as somewhat androgynous but that you are female comes through.

Men can be just as pissy and sensitive as women, sometimes more so.

Cham - that really hurts my feelings. :-)

[ There are 10 kinds of people. Those who know binary and those who don't. ] (Stole a little something from Chuck.)

7:17 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

TO: DADvocate
RE: Trés Droll [pardon my 'French']

Cham - that really hurts my feelings. :-) -- DADvocate

But I needed a chuck(le) at this point. It's been a 'day'.


[Humor must not professedly teach and it must not professedly preach, but it must do both if it would live forever. -- Mark Twain]

7:26 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

P.S. I just got to your tag-line....

....a hearty laugh in that.

I remember the inspiration...and in light of today's 'fun-and-games' with computing.....

[A pun is its own reword!]

7:28 PM, March 26, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like blogging about politics but am not sure I "blog like a man" whatever that means.
According to Ms Breslin it means "lacking wit and insight".

8:48 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Misanthrope said...

Off topic, but I think the good Doctor will enjoy it.

For those of you who've never taken Latin (The Language of Perverts) there is a rule in grammar: ALL GOOD THINGS are feminine gender. So night, death, light, women and girls, and islands are examples. As is the word "virago", which is a warlike or heroic woman. Think Joan of Arc or Boudica.

Anyway, I would say that Dr. Helen blogs like a man if the options under discussion are our only choices.

9:51 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Lance Burri said...

For the most part, I’ve found, women bloggers fall into three categories: “mommybloggers,” “ladybloggers,” and “women who blog like men.”

Do all men blog alike? And if not, then is this person not saying that women have a wider range of bloggish capability?

And if so: God, that is so sexist.

10:47 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger David Foster said...

Oh. Good. Grief. Breslin's typology of blogs & bloggers is awfully simplistic.

At least half the blogs I read regularly are written by women. MaxedOutMama writes about economics & finance, subjects about which (unlike the typical MSM commentator) she actually knows something. Margaret Soltan writes about higher education, as does Erin O'Connor...they both write about a lot of other stuff, too. Bookworm writes about politics and culture. Army wife Sarah writes about politics and military affairs, also knitting and (recently added) mommyblogging. Cara Ellison covers politics and so many other things it's hard to pin her down. I'd add more, but my typing fingers are getting tired.

There are more things in heaven and on earth, Horatia, than are dreamed of in your philosophy.

11:03 PM, March 26, 2010  
Blogger Dr.D said...

Helen, it is interesting that you chose to talk about this today. Cass over at Villainous Company has a post up on the same topic, so I suppose this support the "great minds think alike" idea.

8:39 AM, March 27, 2010  
Blogger Mario said...

I propose another category to add to the class of bloggers, this one non-sex-specific. How about "bloggers who, from time to time, come up short with respect to having anything interesting to say, and who therefore conjure up provocative posts guaranteed to drive traffic to their site"?

My point is that there are also plenty of male bloggers out there with what some would consider inane topics as the focal point of their blogging, and you could just as easily write an article about them.

11:22 AM, March 27, 2010  
Blogger Stamper said...

As to the question about what kind of blogger you are, related to sexuality, you would probably fall into the category feminine. By asking about it.
On the other hand, Internet is basically not well suited to communicate emotions - I don't mean that it will not stir up emotions - so the honest answer would be I haven't got a clue.
But seeing and hearing you on PJTV, I don't have a shadow of a doubt

2:10 PM, March 27, 2010  
Blogger Joe said...

I read the article yesterday. It made no sense to me and was enormously sexist and arrogant. Also demonstrably false. Dr. Helen, Althouse, several "geek" blogs by brilliant software engineers, religious blogs all disprove her thesis. Then there is the assertion that a few women put their male rivals to shame: I assume she made that category so she could put herself in it. But is she seriously asserting that if but a female be serious about politics, she'd be more astute than men? This is the ultimate self-absorbed feminist claptrap that she supposedly decries (i.e., whatever a man can do, a woman can do better.)

2:23 PM, March 27, 2010  
Blogger Suzanne Lucas said...

I don't blog about mommy stuff, and I avoid cleaning my kitchen floor so why would I tell you how to clean yours? I also don't blog about politics or feminism.

So, I suppose there is no other category for me. Of course, you could just argue that this just proves that HR people aren't actually human.

5:08 PM, March 27, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My wife is HR person and so I resent your remark.

Is female-made porn different, the same, better, worse than male-made porn?

Female novelists? male novelists?
films/ writing style?

5:37 PM, March 27, 2010  
Blogger Cham said...

In my kitchen you have to wear shoes, otherwise something will stick to the bottom of your feet. I felt fortunate that I heard a mouse this morning, maybe he will eat what is there and the floor will appear cleaner. Clearly I'm not cut out for mommyblogging.

6:59 PM, March 27, 2010  
Blogger David Foster said...

Of course HR people aren't human....they're *cats*, as anyone can tell from the pictures.

9:43 PM, March 27, 2010  
Blogger Topher said...

This is part and parcel of the feminist movement, which for all its talk about equality and gender-blindedness stereotypes women into and out of their sisterhood hardcore.

A woman who doesn't blog about the approved "women's issues" (abortion, interior design, celebrity gossip, or parenting, because of course men aren't really parents) is expelled from the sisterhood as a "male blogger" the same way that Sarah Palin wasn't a "real woman" because she didn't carry water for abortion rights, wage-gapping or other feminist/victimization issues.

2:13 AM, March 28, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The label "mommyblogger" speaks for itself. And there clearly are many such blogs. Why the term "ladyblogger," I don't know.I would skip the cutesy-poo'ness and just call them feminist bloggers. Some are better than others. Some go beyond mere critique of pop culture. But they are all feminists and that is self explanatory, as a label. Plenty of these too. As for "women who blog like men" and their alleged "putting to shame" of male bloggers with their "scathing wit" and "piercing gaze," this is mostly BS and/or wish fulfillment. There are some good female bloggers on most topics out there,including the "male" topics. But the female bloggers are hardly the best of these. At most, they are in the discussion.

As for our hostess, I would say she has an eclectic mix of "male" and "female" subject matter. There is a lot of fairly conventional politics, but there is a fair amount of "relationship" stuff too. And she is also hard to pigeonhole because while she is obviously all woman, she can, and does, often see things from a man's perspective.

2:42 AM, March 28, 2010  
Blogger Topher said...

What's ironic is that Dr. Helen's subject matter like female-on-male violence, entitlement mentality and divorce law are without a doubt denounced by feminists as "anti-woman," when cleaning up these issues would be the best possible thing for women in America to really be seen as equals to men, not as beings with built-in double standards (backed up by the law) about attitude, providing, and physical abuse.

9:46 AM, March 28, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Few mental health professionals will admit to understanding violent people. To do so would lead to a heretical discussion of the flaws in our most sacred institution, family.

11:36 AM, March 28, 2010  
Blogger wild chicken said...

I don't blog "like a woman" because I made up my mind not to go into confessional mode and reveal too much personal history. There is plenty to talk about with me being in the center of it. But it does seem to disconcert some men. Clearly I am not a real woman.

Then there are the commenters who never really unload on you because you're a woman, and those who go out of their way to dump on you to prove they don't care that you're a does bring out a weird dynamic.

2:45 PM, March 28, 2010  
Blogger Cham said...

Wild Chicken:

When I first started my blog back in 2005 there were some men that showed up in my comments section that wanted to sexually harass and sexually humiliate. At the same time there were women that showed up to shame me into being their particular brand of politically correct...because I was a woman. As the years have passed those commenters have faded into the woodwork, either they aren't getting the result they want or they realize I am an unfulfilling target. I'm sure they are still out there but they have probably moved on to Facebook or tormenting those that are willing to give them a dialogue. As time has gone by I've made a conscious decision not to tone my posts down, recently I'm ramping things up.

5:25 PM, March 28, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmm. I don't know about all that. I like this blog, though.

5:53 PM, March 28, 2010  
Blogger Diogenes said...

By "man" blogs she's inadvertently admitting that more men than women, on average, are into such important issues. Yes women can be intellectuals. But the real, hardcore intellectuals, are usually men, and a minority of women. If you look at the Libertarian population, over 90% of them are men. It's sex differences we have to just accept it. Men are more mentally aggressive and have more potential to become thinkers. Women have to work harder for it because their brains are geared towards more social, emotional bonding, etc...

to be a thinker requires clashing with society and the prevailing paradigms. Men are better biologically equipped for this task.

2:21 AM, March 30, 2010  
Blogger Omnibabe said...

I sure don't fit into ANY of those categories. And I like it that way.

2:44 PM, March 31, 2010  
Blogger nedludd said...

I just read this blog and was reminded by your last category of a paraphrase of your last category. "Blog Like a Man"

Here's Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons

8:32 PM, April 01, 2010  

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