You flip open your computer with innocent intentions. You’ll only spend a few minutes here and there before you get down to business. But a few clicks later and your hooked. Again. You wonder how things got this out of hand, how you could let yourself waste so much time doing something you know you shouldn’t.
It’s seductive. It’s destructive. It’s blogging porn.
Blogging porn is voyeuristically viewing how other bloggers write, design, and monetize, fantasizing about their careers, lives, and circumstances, thus, avoiding the real work and goals of your own internet space. Blogging porn is hurting bloggers everywhere, killing creativity, stifling individuality, and sabotaging productivity.
We are quick to recognize how sexual pornography can ruin lives, but do we realize other forms of porn exist and have related negative effects? Consider some of the problems with actual pornography and you’ll begin to see why blogging porn is a similarly slippery slope.
- Porn damages relationships. It hurts both the user and the people around them, not only in the present, but in the future as well. Scanning the internet, endlessly comparing yourself to others, leads to jealousy. You covet the platform, the design, the writing ability and soon you are too consumed with envy over what they have and you don’t that your friendship dwindles. Existing relationships are tainted and future relationships are stopped before they have a chance to blossom.
- Porn promotes unrealistic expectations. It capitalizes on out-of-the-ordinary (often digitally enhanced) people doing out-of-the-ordinary things that most real people don’t do. Similarly, blogging porn pits your skills against industry leaders who have teams working behind the scenes, who blog full-time, who are exceptionally gifted with talent and resources. The average blogger can’t dish out thousands for a stellar design or devote hours to creating viral content. Comparing your blog to the top 1% of bloggers will leave you dissatisfied with reality.
- Porn is distracting. The internet has made pornography easily available to the masses at any time of day or night. Blogs are equally accessible. How many of us have allowed a quick “inspect element” turn into hours of drooling over other blogs’ theme and social media icons? The time spent oogling other blogs and judging that post could be spent investing in our own blog.
- Porn cheapens the real deal. Something is always lost in translation when you endlessly consume the unrealistic. What was once fun, meaningful, and fulfilling is left wanting because you’ve been inundated with a deceptive standard. However small or amateur your blogging efforts, they are worthwhile because they come from your heart and your passions (I hope!). They are the real deal. Don’t let blogging porn diminish the work you do and the effort you put forth.
- Porn leads to more, more, more. It’s never enough. The pornography vortex redefines success. You can’t be satisfied with what you have – you need to have a podcast or an online course or an ebook. Those things often come at the expense of time and energy you should be expending elsewhere. And for what end? Another platform for you to compare to others?
I’ve fallen into this trap too many times. I’ve let hours go by as I Iooked and coveted. Repeat. My envy has driven wedges between friendships and kept me from connecting with others. I’ve let blogging porn make blogging more of a commodity than a ministry.
I don’t think you need to delete your feed reader or stop looking at blogs for ideas and inspiration, but blogging pornography is a real danger if you let those practices consume your time and energy.
Blogging is hard work; but it can have a real impact and build real relationships. Don’t let blogging porn cheapen your work and steal your blogging joy.