Kate Olson’s recent post, Digital Confusion, discusses much of what I have been reflecting on lately. I also have been wondering about the greater picture behind the blogosphere… Kate writes:
The great thing about opening up our worlds to comments is that we’re able to hear other sides of an issue and gain perspective – when people link to a blog post of mine and rant about why I’m wrong, it’s eye-opening to see how differently someone else thinks about the same issue (and links are always good, right?) and it’s great to be able to chime in on the comments on THEIR post to tell my side.
Kate continues to wonder what impact this is going to have on kids, as far as being open to scrutiny on the web. Here are some thoughts:
Maybe the blogosphere is supposed to bring us full circle. Socrates believed the best education was in the form of a question. Maybe the blogosphere in some strange way is supposed to bring us back to that same philosophy. The best answer is maybe another question. Maybe we don’t have it all figured out. Maybe we blog to ask the deeper questions about why we do what we do. Maybe we blog because we want to hear the other questions from a different perspective.
We get in trouble when we take things personally, and not academically. The bigger question, or idea, gets lost in the doubt and anxiety. Shift is happening because of a communal dialogue, not because of one person having all the answers. Shift happens because of the questioning, the requestioning, and the reflection behind the questions.
Our kids would be better off writing, blogging, sharing ideas, than believing there is always one right answer. Sometimes there isn’t, and for them they need to understand that’s okay. It’s what makes us human. What should we do with our children and the internet? Teach them how to question, requestion, and reflect. That’s the best any of us can do.