Blogging perspective – can bloggers work?

The claim has been made, occasionally, that if bloggers can write for themselves, they can work for an employer. Is there any truth in that?

Well, it’s been suggested that I write a year-end summary of this year’s posts. Actually counting them is out of the question – not enough spoons to concentrate for that long – but extrapolating from what I’ve written so far this month which, surprisingly, turns out to be 29 posts, including this (and there’s one more to come today), that would come out at over 600 posts for the year.

That feels over-generous but, then, until I counted I felt as if I’d not written a great deal this month. Still, let’s go with 500 as a more realistic estimate. That’s and average of 1.4 a day, which feels about right (600 is about 1.6 a day, which is still within the bounds of possibility).

Not all run to several thousand words, many, like today’s, are, are short (the one to come is just under 1,000 words, most of which I wrote yesterday).

On a busy day, then, I might write between 500 and 2,000 words on average, and most days a lot fewer. Assuming no spoon failures, that’s under 2 hour’s actual typing, not counting thinking time, or research. And that’s what I can manage on a good day.

Obviously, then, while it might take me a fair chunk of the day at home, the actual typing  represents less than a quarter of a working day (in a commercial environment I’d just type what I’m told – no need for thinking or research).

What do I do with the rest of the day? Rest, a lot, conserving spoons, check and answer email, read online newspapers and other sources, looking for material and, to be fair, just wandering around the Web, looking for anything interesting in the welter of dross. And checking in with Twitter.

Anyway, in terms of actual work output, that equates to unemployable, even if I were able to travel, which I’m not. So even though I might spend 12 hours a day in front of my computer – hell, I’ve got to sit somewhere, it might as well be here – that’s not the same as working.

The claim, then, at least for this blogger, that if I can blog I can work, is the purest bovine ordure, along with the claim that spending the day on Twitter means that, too.

And that doesn’t just apply to me, it applies, I’m certain, to almost every disabled person I know, whether bloggers or tweeps – the amount of actual work involved in either activity does not remotely translate into a day’s paid work (or, these days, unpaid!).

The belief that bloggers or Twitter users are capable of work, just because they are bloggers or Twitter users, is clearly fallacious (mostly; there are always exceptions), and probably maliciously so, designed to be used simply as a nugget of disinformation to piss off Daily Mail trolls.

I have little doubt that for those people, like IDS, who have brains in which the synapses fire every other Thursday, it means we can work, but just because the hard of thinking believe it, it doesn’t make it true.

To be honest, I haven’t seen this claim for a while, but I have no doubt that, like herpes, it’ll be back.

It’s just a matter of time.

3 thoughts on “Blogging perspective – can bloggers work?

  1. Heh. I was told that I could clearly work – by a Lib Dem, clearly unhappy that his party might be perceived as restraining the Tories’ callousness in any way – on the grounds that my blog output was “well written”. Leaving aside whether that assessment is at all accurate, he was judging me on about 5 posts – which was the sum total of my output for a year.

    What it really translates to is “you can use a computer, so you can work”. And put in those terms it’s obviously rubbish, which is, I suspect, why they don’t.

  2. Great post, Ron!
    I find typing up my blog is a killer on my body. Because of this I have to handwrite my blog from elsewhere in my house – usually from my bed in the small hours, if I can get the pain under enough control to concentrate. This is very frustrating to creative flow and speed of work! Like you, I spend all day transmitting and receiving information, thinking and creating – feeding my brain – as well as my daily routines which are often too much in themselves. I am only managing to write as much as I do because I am being allowed to go at my own pace and set my own deadlines. This is hard because I always think of how well I once was and feel I’m not doing enough anymore. I don’t need more guilt and inadequacy heaped on me by politicians. Whilst I hope I can still be useful and I yearn to be financially independent, I am at my best in fits and starts and often during unsociable hours. I would not employ me for anything requiring reliability and I wish the political classes would realise just how distressing this is.

    • I’m lucky in that respect – sitting upright at the keyboard is the position that causes the least pain** – pity it’s also the most tiring!

      **DWP snoop note – it’s all relative, guys!

      What would be good, in terms of support, is a gamers’ chair, but the only ones I’ve seen are at floor level, and cost an arm and a leg.

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