Saturday, January 31, 2009

Ass-vice vs Advice

One of the most common rants I see on other blogs is someone railing against what they call ass-vice or unsolicited advice. The nosy and the meddlesome bother most but I've seen many a blog and blogger lately that are angry about it. The most recent rant I've seen was between Rebecca Woolf from Girl's Gone Child, Heather Armstrong from Dooce, Alice Bradley from Fin Slippy and Daphne Brogdon from Cool Mom (excuse my linky-love, but must give credit where credit is due) on Momversation, which I have linked below, for your viewing pleasure.

Advice from absolute strangers in public? Unwelcome and I fully agree. Interfering with someone else's child at a park? Also unwelcome.

But is it still ass-vice when a person is posting the intimate details of their life on the internet to be read by complete strangers? When you post the intimate details of not only your life but your marital life and your life as a mother, usually for profit, such as sites like Dooce, a website that supports not only its author but her husband and child, you're inviting strangers into your life. You're giving them details about your day to day life, down to the nitty gritty, that some people wouldn't even give their friends in person.

Through the computer, you're letting these people into your lives. They know about your child's potty training, your fight with your husband, how you're feeling about having another baby, and much much more in some cases. You've let them feel like they know you as well as they know their "real life" friends. So I still don't see why people are surprised when they get comments, suggestions and advice from blog readers, even if it is on their parenting.

A common question on the video I linked above is "Why do you care how I parent my child?" Its an ironic question, coming from a group of mommy bloggers. If people didn't care how you parented your child, and didn't care about your private life, you wouldn't be making money off your blog. Just be grateful that people are interested, and grow thick enough skin to deal with criticism and advice from the strangers who you've opened your life to. After all, it was and still is, your choice.

What's your take on ass-vice vs advice?


Lost In Splendor said...

I do agree with you. As annoying and unwelcome as some people's advice can be when you are on the internet (not in life) you do open yourself to criticism and as crappy and annoying as that can be sometimes it's just something you have to deal with. Esp. when those people are sort of paying your bills so to speak.