Digital Face



In physical life we have the option of showing any face we want to show, for example, we can be very nice and smile all the time, even if we cannot stand the person we are chatting with.

Or we can tell that person what we think and be honest with what’s in our heart, to the risk of being considered nasty or whatever the other person might want to feel about us.

I’ve seen in many places, especially work places, that many people have a face to show in the outside…sort of a mask. They use it to show a nice them while inside they are a different them, and you can tell because they chat and smile with someone to just five minutes later do nasty gossip with the next person about the first one.

When blogging things move at a slower speed; we have time to think the consequences of our words while we write a post and consider the impact those words might have in the people who read them.

Also, despite what some may say, when a person is reading it is a one to one communication, but the post is there for many to read, which means we are talking to a group at the same time.

So the question that comes to my mind is: Do we use a nice face in the digital world as well?  Do we transfer the way we act in the physical world to the digital world? Are we nice bloggers so the readers will not be mad at us and we can be popular? Or do we tell things the way they are in our hearts to the risk of being segregated, just like it would happen in the physical world?

To be honest, I’ve never been very popular in the physical world; even if I try to be polite because there’s no reason to tell that specific “a.. hole” what I think, it still shows in my face what my opinion is.

When writing for this blog I keep in mind that I should be nice and consider the feelings of so many different people that might read my posts. I don’t want to hurt them just because we might think different or have a different perspective of the same situation.

Yet, where do we draw the division line between being nice and being honest? Should we digitally smile all the time and say and be nice so we can spread the popularity of our blogs? Or should we give more emphasis to honesty and show who we really are, what we really think, and hope someone out there will agree and valuate our ways?

Of course, there’s no need to start blogging wars with comments YouTube style; being polite but honest also shows a sign of maturity and solidity in the blogger/commenter image.

Obviously the first one is better for business while the second one could become a very strong trade mark that will give even better support…if we survive the growing process!

What do you think?

Do you digitally smile all the time when posting or commenting?

Or do you tell the blogger when you disagree with something, even to the risk of becoming unpopular?


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18 Responses to Digital Face

  1. Sara says:


    This post really made me think and I like that:~)

    Wow. I think I respond to the tone of the writer. I’m not a blitz kind of commenter. I usually go to writers I enjoy…and I like them for different reasons.

    Therefore, I don’t often disagree with what they say. If I do, I will usually say something in a teasing way, rather than attack or get in their face about whatever it is.

    Regarding how I write, I don’t think I intentionally put on a smiley face just to win people over, but I do try to find something that will resonate with my readers. Fortunately, I have a very eclectic group of readers, which makes this easier:~)

    But to give an example….I tend to have a very dark sense of humor and have learned that not everyone finds this form of my humor funny…so I’m careful with it. I treat it like a powerful spice and use it in moderation:~)

    Thanks for this interesting post:~)
    Sara´s last post ..Story Photo- The selection is…

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Sara,

    You are right; we go to read from whom we like their writing, so not to many chances of disagreement.

    Humor, such complicated issue. What’s funny for one is not for the next; even between my son and I we have different sense of humor so it’s difficult to connect sometimes, but being the two of us we know what might sound offensive is not what was intended, but in blogging, with so many different people that we don’t know in depth, ouch! Better be careful to avoid hurting feelings.

    Thank you for your comment.:)

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Digital Face

  2. Tony Single says:

    Hi Raul. I like what you have to say on this subject. :)

    I’m fairly certain that I don’t wear a digital face. Offline and online, I just try to treat everyone I can with a little respect, even those who are rude to me. Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s not because I’m some saintly human being that I do this. No, it’s because I’ve found that a little kindness can outfox folks every time, especially the belligerent ones.

    If I need to say something that’s not popular or may be considered offensive in any way, I weigh up whether it really needs to be said or not. If so, then I make absolutely sure to say with the utmost respect in whatever arena I’m saying it in. That way, if offense is caused then at least it will be because of the substance of what was said rather than because it was said unlovingly or disrespectfully. :)

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Tony,

    “If I need to say something that’s not popular or may be considered offensive in any way, I weigh up whether it really needs to be said or not.”

    I like that! A very good way to decide if is worth to keep going or simply stop there.

    Thanks Toni for the input :)

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Digital Face

  3. Kelvin Kao says:

    With blogging, I don’t feel like I am talking to a group. I feel like it’s a collection of many one-on-one conversations, since the readers are not all reading together. That aside, I don’t think I intentionally put on a smile, but it’s true that the thoughts are more organized simply because it takes longer. As for commenting, I will probably point out something I don’t agree with if I am a regular commenter of the blog and I know my input would be valued. Otherwise I would probably just have just moved on.
    Kelvin Kao´s last post ..Bottle Monster Unboxes an iPad

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Kelvin,

    Good point! When writing we have less chances of unintentionally hurt someone than compared with when talking, simply because we have more time to think and analyze our words before pressing “Publish”

    I’ve done a similar thing you mention about commenting. Many times if I have a different opinion, instead of starting an argument I can simply consider it in the category “I have nothing relevant to say”

    Thanks for your comment Kelvin :)

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Digital Face

  4. Lori says:

    Hi Raul,
    I read this post in my RSS Reader this morning, had to think about it during the day, and come back tonight.

    Please stop making me think! (ha ha)

    What I really want to say is, “Please see the comments above.” I know that’s a cop out for me, but they did such a nice job of responding to your post.

    I’m such a softie, do-gooder, tree-hugger, and warm fuzzy-type of gal — if I completely disagree, I usually choose not to comment.

    Maybe it’s my roots, being constantly reminded, “Honey, if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all.” I also do my best to remain positive at my blog, maybe for myself more than anyone else. ;)

    Great thought-provoking post, Raul.
    Lori´s last post ..Your Body is a Fortress- Part 10 – Training for Old Age

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Lori,

    When you write: “If you don’t have anything to say, don’t say it at all” I know that one, I also heard it many times; it’s in the same category of “Men don’t cry” All those little pieces of “advice” that were given with the best intention but sometimes did more harm than good.

    Tree-hugger? First time I meet one…nice to meet you! :)

    Thank you for your kind comment :)
    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Digital Face

  5. Davina says:

    Folk don’t like confrontation and it’s easier to avoid it online. We’re afraid of making mistakes or being alienated. We have our reasons, whatever they may be; upbringing, life experience, low self esteem, etc. It goes the other way too; I’ve seen people engage and appear to be inviting confrontation.

    I believe we just need to practice dealing with our “stuff” and we each sure give one another the chance to do it. I don’t enjoy confrontation either and consider it a real blessing to have people in my life who I can practice with.

    My brother, for example. We had a disagreement a while ago and needed to take some time to ourselves. We’ve since reconvened and discussed things. It didn’t get heated because we both listened and didn’t make it about right or wrong.
    Davina´s last post ..Write from the Journal- Paging the Critic

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Davina,

    Yes, so many different reason a blogger/commenter don’t know that could, unintentionally, hurt somebody else’s feelings, but as you mention, it’s easier to avoid confrontation online.

    I like what you say: “I believe we just need to practice dealing with our “stuff” and we each sure give one another the chance to do it.” That’s so true!

    Thank you for your comments and advice :)

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Digital Face

  6. hmmmmm…interesting post and question Raul. I really think that it is all about authenticity and being who you are both on and offline. Of course, I think it is also important to really try to hear and understand what other people are putting out there in the blogosphere. For me, I would classify myself as a digital smiler :) I really like it out here in the blogosphere and have met so many great people so it makes it easy to smile. My issue is that I fell that my laptop is permanently fixed to my fingertips :)
    Sibyl-alternaview´s last post ..Do the Small Things Well and Achieve Big Goals

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Sibyl,

    Authenticity…that seems to be the key to go between honesty and politeness so to be oneself without hurting feelings.

    “I really like it out here in the blogosphere and have met so many great people so it makes it easy to smile”

    I can understand what you’re saying; sometimes for me is easier to interact in the digital world than in the physical one.

    By the way, one drop of vegetal oil in each finger will prevent your laptop from getting glued to your fingertips :) (just kidding)

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Digital Face

  7. Hi Raul,

    Very thought provoking post. But, it’s easy for me to answer. For me, what you see/read is what you get – both on and off the blog. I like to see everyone get along even though I know that’s not possible. When I write (both my blog posts and comments), I’m thinking of those new (and more seasoned) bloggers who are reading my words and how my words can affect people.

    Knowing words can hurt others as much as, or even more than a physical slap or punch, I choose my words carefully. I see myself as a nice person and surely wouldn’t want to say the wrong thing and cause harm.

    With so much anger and hostility on the internet, I certainly don’t care to add to it. In fact, if I land on a page or see comments where the tone is hostile, I have to click off – it hurts me to the core.
    Barbara Swafford´s last post ..They Lied There Is No King

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Barbara,

    I suppose we all somehow become the same in physical and digital world, and sure, words sometimes can hurt more, so choosing them carefully becomes a must, which sometimes is difficult in my case when “interpreting” the english words with a different meaning.

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Blogging and Telepathy

  8. Joy says:

    Hi Raul,
    My blog represents me, and I tend to find the joy in all, so what I express then is joy filled. Not in a phony la la the sun is shining when it’s really raining outside, but in an authentic, okay it’s raining but man this hot chocolate is delicious way…
    I go to other’s blogs to step outside of my be encouraged, inspired, motivated, learn…so I don’t always agree but I like that..when I don’t agree there is a lesson for me..and I state that lesson in the comments…
    Words can impact a person forever so I stay with kind words on my blog and in life…
    Joy´s last post ..Wednesday Wisdom- A Threshold…

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Joy,

    “Words can impact a person forever so I stay with kind words on my blog and in life…”

    I like that! It is said everything comes back so it is good to keep a nice circle going around.

    Thank you for stopping by and your comment :)

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Blogging and Telepathy

  9. I have a feeling that our digital face is usually a reflection of our real life face. Often times I bet it’s a truer image than our daily face, especially in anonymous comments. Have you read any of the comments on a Yahoo news article? That’s a pretty good picture of what kind of people are in this world.

    With bloggers, since we are posting all the time, I think it would be difficult (but probably not impossible) to maintain a charade. Not only that but I think it’s best to be yourself, or at least work towards the person you want to be. Online may be a good ground for practicing how you want to be. It’s easier when you have more time to compose your thoughts.
    Eric | Eden Journal´s last post ..The Invisible Gorilla – Counter Intuition and Change Blindness

    Raul Ojeda Reply:

    Hi Eric,

    You are right, sooner or later, after posting for a while, the true face of the blogger will be shown, so better be oneself to present honesty from the beginning.

    “Online may be a good ground for practicing how you want to be” I like that! So the digital world can be an element that could destroy a person’s physical world or it can be an important aid in self improvement, depending on how that person uses it.

    Thanks for the comment :)

    Raul Ojeda´s last post ..Blogging and Telepathy

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