Katy brought up an interesting topic for this week's Friend Friday: privacy. This is something that every blogger has to take into consideration and I think it's interesting to learn what some people consider private and others consider to be just fine to share with the world.
1. Do you think privacy is something we should worry about as bloggers?
I think more than privacy, safety is something that we should take into consideration. I am generally not a very private person. I'm very open, I don't mind sharing about myself (although there are some things that only a handful of people know about and it's going to stay that way!), but I do need to think about what is going to keep my family and me safe. Every reader that I've interacted with thus far has been fantastic, but there are some people out there that are just crazy and I don't want them having access to every piece of information.
2. Do you use your real name or a pen name? What was behind that decision?
I use my real name: Melissa. However, I've never revealed my husband or daughter's names on the blog for their privacy (and for the safety of my daughter). I recently asked my husband to help me come up with pseudonyms for them because I'm not all that creative and wanted some fun names to refer to them as rather than just calling them my husband or my daughter. He decided that, like in real life, I should refer to our daughter as The Princess. She's very much into Beauty and the Beast right now and often calls my husband Beast when she's playing and pretending, so we decided that should be his name on my blog. So from now on, when I refer to The Princess or Princess Girl or something of the like, or to Beast or The Beast or something, you'll know that's my daughter and my husband.
My reason for this is because I don't want strangers (and by strangers, I mean lurkers or the crazies who don't interact or form any relationships) knowing my daughter's name or how to attract her attention if they see her in real life.
3. How much personal information do you reveal about your life beyond the blog?
Quite possibly too much. Like I said, I'm not a very private person in general and I tend to be very verbose, so I often get long-winded and probably discuss TMI or things that people don't really care about. I try to be witty and interesting and upbeat, but sometimes I just jabber on!
4. What will you never reveal?
Our address, for one thing. But I'm pretty sure no blogger in his or her right mind would ever do that. I won't reveal our exact city within our general location. So far I haven't revealed what my daughter looks like for more privacy and safety reasons, although she's just so darn cute that I might have to post some pictures eventually. I won't reveal exactly where I work or information about my co-workers, for their privacy.
Other than that, I'll probably talk about pretty much anything!
5. As bloggers, we have to an extent made ourselves 'public' figures. But still there are things that are intimate to each of us that does not need to be known by anyone that stumbles across our blog. How do you determine what is appropriate for public consumption and what is private to you?
A lot of it comes down to safety again (see number 4), but in regards to general things like what we did over the weekend or life events, I try to stick with things that I think other people might be able to relate to or that they would be interested in. Then again, like I said in number 3, I tend to be long-winded and just chatter on about everything.
I consider many of you with whom I've interacted to be friends and as such, I like to share some of my personal life with you in an effort to build relationships and just be relate-able and approachable. There are some aspects of my life that only a handful of people know about and I want to keep it that way. Other than that, I'll pretty much tell you anything!
If you have any specific questions for me, don't hesitate to ask on my FormSpring (there's also a box on my right sidebar of the blog)!
You can also follow me on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook. I enjoy building new relationships so connect with me!
Don't forget to check out Katy's blog and the other bloggers' posts on this subject of privacy!