Bas Geertsema

A blog is nothing special, in fact it so un-special that one must have pretty good arguments to create one these days. Ofcourse, you might think that I will try convince you that I have very unique things to say. Or that I am a very important man. Neither is true. I wish I was, but until that day I am just a regular dutch guy starting another blog. What is it then that moved me to do this? I have thought about this for a while. A while ago I had a blog on which I shared my experiences during a worldtrip. I really enjoyed doing this, and my friends and family regularly peeked to see what I was up to. Even people I have never met regularly visited this blog. However, when I came back home things turned back to normal again and the blog kind of stopped. It even took me a while to write a final enclosing blog. In my day-to-day life back in the Netherlands it just was not in my rhythm anymore. And furthermore, what did I have to write about now? Ofcourse, because of my travelling I was able to write more out of the ordinary stuff than I do now (who cares about my day- to-day working life, right?), which was the whole reason for the existence of that blog.

Or was it? It was certainly not only about the things I wrote, maybe that was even secondary. No, it was mainly about the people I already knew, who wanted to know where I was. Whether I was still alive and if I already had found the love-of-my-life in some foreign country. If you look in the blog community you will notice that most blogs are not written for the the whole world population out there. No, instead most blogs are written for just a selection of people you probably already know one way or another. I have a couple of blogs that I regularly read from people who I have met in real life. Maybe I meet these people only once a year, but I am truly interested in what they have to say, just because I know the person behind the blog. I actually like to read even the most ordinary things. For long I figured you only had to start a blog when you truly had something different to say. Something that people actually would find interesting to read and recommend to other readers. But I changed my vision. It all depends on the audience you are trying to reach. If you write your blogs for friends and family, it is okay to write about your pet animals. People from, say, Tibet will not be interested in it, but your friends will! On the other hand, if you write a blog to gain momentum in your professional or academical environment you want to make sure you truly write high-quality and interesting blogs. It is much, much, tougher to truly reach out for a global audience.

A while I hesitated to start a blog because I didn’t know whether to start a more personal blog, or a more professional blog. In the end, I wanted both, but because they have some overlap I did not want to create two seperate blogs. I decided to go for a single blog in which I file blog items either under professional or personal. This way, I can filter those items for people interested in my professional side. Likewise, others can only filter for items on a more personal level. I intend to write personal blogs when I think they add value, so this might be very irregular. Just subcribe to the RSS feed and you’ll be off. My intention for professional blog items is to create more elaborate posts, not just refering to a single url with a one- liner next to it. My intention is to write my professional items in English, some more personal items will go in Dutch.

But let’s leave this blog talking for now. Because something else is new: the domainname. I recently registered _which, obviously, refers to my full name. It is nowadays hard to get a domain with a meaningfull name, so I was glad it wasn’t taken already. The reason I created this site was to formalize my online identity. Since the rise of web 2.0 the social impact of the internet has increased more and more. Social networking sites like myspace, facebook or Hyves (in the netherlands) have a serious impact on how we communicate with each other these days. There are more and more occassions in which a person is evaluated based on it’s online identity. Consider the application for a job in which the employer looks up your personal info on the internet. Or your neighbors checking you out. I expect that this will only get more important with the years to come. So I decided to aggregate all these information on a single place. To keep control of what I represent in the online world. Because, it might just turn out to be more important than who you are in real life! With this domain, I hope to keep a long-lasting identity, independent of temporary hypes, dozens of web 2.0 applications, etc. And if I use these sites, I will try to embed them or refer to them here. So this will be the starting point for everything relevant related to me. Also I will start to use a mail account on this domain as my personal mail.

The concept of online identities and their impact on social life, legal issues and privacy is very interesting. I think I will regularly relate to this subject one way or another. One thing is clear for me: the way we communicate will change rapidly over the coming years. Just as it has been in the past. My guess is that a lot of youngsters in high school have never written traditional formal letters. It is dying. Not that I regret this, it just means something else has come in place, and that is wat does interest me.

I reckon this is enough text for a first writing, so I will stop here. I hope we will enjoy my future writings!



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