August 08, 2012 by Gabe | [mmd] |

I love to ask "why". It's just the way I'm built. Actions have reasons and I think it's valuable to understand what they are. When I start a new project I try to list the primary reasons or "business drivers". Everyone has their reasons, from millionaires in congress to toddlers at recess, to people linking to articles on a blog.

For me, blogging has always felt like millions of people on street corners holding signs and yelling into the sky waiting for an audience. "Come listen to me. Come over here!" I'm no different.

I often ask myself why I write here at Macdrifter. It takes time and effort and costs me money. Why am I doing it? What do I get out of it? Here's some reasons that I think could be considered:

I want to feel important

My family makes me feel important. The Internet does not.

I'd like to influence the thinking of others

I don't think anyone could answer "no" to this but at least it's not a big driver for me.

It makes me feel smart and smug

The Internet usually makes me feel dumb. Talking about Chemistry usually makes me feel smart and smug. I rarely do that on the Internet.

I want to make some extra money

I already have a job. This Web site costs more than I bring in.

It's a stepping stone to becoming a journalist

Not something I have ever wanted to be. I'm also not sure journalism is still a job.

I could start a new career as a blogger

Again, I already have an excellent career with good benefits. The Internet has not presented a competitive offer.

I want to leave a legacy

Perhaps. I'm not sure who I would be leaving it for.

I want to have a loud voice to influence conversations

To be frank, I don't work very hard for traffic. I didn't even track visits until I needed to for The Syndicate. I blocked Google robots for 6 months last year. Hell, I just blew away my site a week ago. I'm sure that negatively impacted my "ranking".

Then Why?

Here's why I think I write here: I make this site to find people like me and to do right by them.

I have met many wonderful people by writing here. I've met people that share similar interests and my sense of humor. People contact me through the site and it has given me an "in" to contact people I like.

Every article I write and every link I post is done because I assume that there's a like minded nerd at the other end. I post links for the people I know and like.

There are secondary reasons that influence me but I don't think they are significant drivers. This is a personal journal on the Internet. I design the site I want to read. I post things I want to remember. I search my own site often.

I want to get better. When I write code, I think that it might be seen by someone I respect. When I write text, I consider that it might be seen by someone I revere.

I guess we all have our reasons. The trick is to be comfortable with those reasons. For me, satisfaction is derived from being proud of my reasons.