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Mad Scientess Jane Expat

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Filters and Multiple Journals, Oh My. [20050810|18:52]
Mad Scientess Jane Expat
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I would classify myself as a fairly serious LJ addict. I tend to be obsessively organized in most aspects of my life and LJ is not an exception. I have several sets of filters.

Two of them are exclusively for perusal of my friends list. One is the Default View, which everyone is on anyway, and one is Must-Reads, for when I am away from regular internet access, e.g. on holiday. The people on Must-Reads are mostly real-life friends, although there are some exceptions. And truthfully, I hardly ever use it, because, as I mentioned before, I am an addict.

I don't keep communities or feeds on my friends list. Those are all in Bookmarks folders along with the people whose journals I read but don't feel comfortable adding as friends.

I have one filter for writing, which is going to see heavy usage once NaNoWriMo comes around again and is somewhat opt-in, although I do remove people fairly readily if they prove unresponsive.

Four filters are exclusively content-based. One is a broad filter that includes almost everyone on my friends list and is opt-in by request if you're not already on it. Two include the people I feel I can trust with certain types of personal issues. Those are semi-opt-in. The last has a very small number of people and is not opt-in. All filters are opt-out should anyone feel discomfort with the contents of my posts.

I'm curious about the way other people safeguard their privacy, both on LJ and off. I realize it's a bit anachronistic to even be asking these questions, but the poll results are only viewable to me, and if you're not comfortable sharing, then by all means don't answer.

Poll #549328 Protecting your LiveJournal privacy.

Do you use the filter function on LiveJournal?

Yes.
35(85.4%)
No.
6(14.6%)

If you use filters, what is their purpose?

Prioritizing sections of my friends list for reading.
0(0.0%)
Separating communities and/or feeds for reading.
0(0.0%)
Maintaining my comfort level with my audience.
4(11.4%)
Maintaining my audience's comfort level with the content of my posts.
1(2.9%)
Sharing potentially marketable content with a restricted audience
0(0.0%)
Sharing content with people who have previously confirmed that they want access to it.
0(0.0%)
Other.
1(2.9%)
Ticky.
0(0.0%)

Other?

Do you keep a separate journal?

Yes.
21(51.2%)
No.
20(48.8%)

If you keep a separate journal, what format(s) do you use?

Online.
4(15.4%)
Paper.
3(11.5%)
Text document on my hard drive.
0(0.0%)
Ticky.
6(23.1%)

Nigella vs. Martha: fight!

Nigella
19(46.3%)
Martha
5(12.2%)
Whu?
17(41.5%)
linkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: scanner_darkly
2005-08-10 18:01 (UTC)
I guess I would say I kept a second journal, private, when my life went apeshit around September of last year. I vented and vented and vented anonymously for a while, then a while back I went back and privacy-locked all those posts out of embarrassment.

I tend to filter based on my comfort level. I have one filter with just a few people who have known me the longest (some of which I am pretty sure never read it, but they're on, that's how it goes) and some that are for different subsets of friends.

I first used Livejournal as a way to talk to my friends, with a 'public/professional' blog on my website. Then due to internal drama, the pro site fell into disuse. Then through my friend Darren suddenly all these writery-people from the professional side of my life found my livejournal, and I had to do some restructuring.

I tend to be pretty cavalier about my filters. Much like the tools in the rest of my life, filters give the illusion of order, but behind the mask there's just fucking chaos. :)
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2005-08-11 09:46 (UTC)
Heh. I tried keeping a separate, anonymous and public LJ once, but I wrote a few entries and then thought, nah, this isn't for me. I still felt like I was writing for an audience and it wasn't helping me to be any more truthful with myself.

I can understand privacy-locking from embarrassment. I hardly ever re-read my paper journal entries, unless they've been written as rough drafts of stories or LJ entries. Even with those, I'm tempted to burn them once they've been refined.

I find that with filtering personal content, it isn't usually difficult to tell who's prudent enough to understand the necessity of keeping information private and/or too busy with their own concerns or too far away geographically to care about plotting to use mine against me. :-P
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[User Picture]From: bellelaqueen
2005-08-10 20:17 (UTC)
Sometimes the physical act of writing can be cleansing. And sometimes that's what I need. I don't keep a seperate journal per se, but I do have notebooks filled with poetry and other scribbles that are too personal even for me to read sometimes.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2005-08-11 09:24 (UTC)
too personal even for me to read sometimes.

Ha, I know what you mean. I rarely go back and read my paper journal entries. When I do, I'm often tempted to burn them.
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From: (Anonymous)
2005-08-12 09:00 (UTC)
I had my first gander at writing a hot and steamy a few months ago, and I still haven't worked up the courage to go back and read it.
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[User Picture]From: bellelaqueen
2005-08-12 09:02 (UTC)
That was me - about the hot and steamy (forgot to log in)
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[User Picture]From: taische
2005-08-10 23:48 (UTC)
I'm always surrounded by pads and sketchbooks where ideas and ramblings get put down, but nothing as organized as a journal. The things I find worth keeping (or at least keeping on-hand) usually end up in one digital form or another.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2005-08-11 09:26 (UTC)
Yeah, I find that my notebooks generally contain the first drafts of everything (including LJ entries). It's not until I put them online or on my laptop that they get refined properly.

I get a bit panicky when I don't have a pen and a sketchbook on hand. I carry them in my purse or my backpack and they're usually sitting next to me in the house, wherever I am.
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[User Picture]From: cataragon
2005-08-11 00:01 (UTC)
The majority of my posts are public. Generally if it's not something I can handle anyone reading, I don't write it.
A long time ago I randomly ran across the journal of a friend of Dan's, detailing how much she was in love with him, which cured me of the 'they'll never find it' bug.
I also tend to use my journal as a kind of announcement forum at times, since the majority of my friends list are RL friends who live in the same place as me. I used to filter them to just local folks, but I know a fair few people who read my journal but don't have one of their own.

Mostly when I lock things it's because it's the kind of thing I know I'm going to feel really stupid about having written in the morning, but I still need feedback. Those I keep to a very small trust filter.
And then I just normal friends only things that rant about real people in my world, like my soon-to-be-in-laws or my family or suchlike. Because I'd hate to hurt their feelings.

I primarily add people to my friend's list so I can read them easily and openly.

I keep a second paper or text file journal only when I feel like I need to.
Currently I have a second livejournal for wedding stuff, because some people on my list indicated that if they had to hear about one more friend's issues with their caterer they were going to go 'spody. I've not used it that much yet though.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2005-08-11 10:13 (UTC)
A long time ago I randomly ran across the journal of a friend of Dan's, detailing how much she was in love with him, which cured me of the 'they'll never find it' bug.

Oh my. While I can understand the appeal of keeping an anonymous public journal - it's kind of like a confessional - it wasn't wise for her to put enough identifiable information in for you to recognize both who she was and the person she was talking about.

Mostly when I lock things it's because it's the kind of thing I know I'm going to feel really stupid about having written in the morning, but I still need feedback.

Yeah, that's what I usually do too. Sometimes it's about hormonal/girly TMI stuff, sometimes it's me working through the complications of my interpersonal relationships. Like you, I try to keep the latter away from people it could discomfit.

I can understand the separate wedding journal. Keeping a separate journal for photography or creative writing or any other specific topic makes a lot of sense, and it allows you to keep your personal/biographical information away from it if you feel the need.
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[User Picture]From: danaid_luv
2005-08-11 00:12 (UTC)
(I cheated and googled Nigella, then felt bad for it).

I tend to gravitate to smaller groups and have kept my f-list short, so for the most part, if you're on the list, you can read most everything. *That's* my filter. Maybe I'm too lazy to sort people, I dunno.

But at the same time, for all of my honesty and openness while journaling, my spookiness is the reason I don't name the boys or T or share much that could place me, location-wise. If I do, it's few and far between. You needn't answer if you'd rather not, of course.

I kept a paper journal of sorts from mid 02'-late 03', but it wouldn't mean much to anyone but me, or perhaps family. Each day was an extreme challenge w/ ThePuppy and I'd try to cap off the worst part of the night with something positive. It was a defense mechanism, really. I only do it a few times a month any more, both because LJ tends to eat up the small extra time I find and because Tigger is so much easer to handle.

Curious, do you write much in the way of 'for your eyes only' posts? I've dabbled with it but I feel like I don't 'own what I say' as much if I use it--when it's out for consumption, I commit to what I write. Maybe that's not necessary for anyone else, but it's a good thing for me.
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[User Picture]From: danaid_luv
2005-08-11 00:14 (UTC)
da*mn.

This: You needn't answer if you'd rather not, of course. ...was to appear at the end of the last paragraph.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2005-08-11 09:07 (UTC)
(Don't feel bad for googling Nigella. I wasn't expecting a lot of Americans to know who she was.)

As far as completely private posts, no, I don't usually write them for LJ. There are entries on my LJ that have been public/f-o for limited periods of time and then went private, but that's because either I didn't need to discuss the issue further or the information in them became outdated. I consider writing for LJ as writing for an audience, even if it is carefully restricted. When I write something for my eyes only, I prefer to treat it as if the only audience for those words will be me. Otherwise, I get caught up in making things sound interesting, sanitizing my less admirable actions and emotions for public consumption and hiding my soft vulnerable bits. You know?
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2005-08-11 09:17 (UTC)
Filtering your personal info to a group who already knows it sounds like a pretty sensible move to me.

Mentions of the d-word are always warning triggers for me. Claiming you don't like drama is one way, in my opinion, of perversely inviting it. I find if I don't talk about it or make time for it at all, often it simply doesn't happen. Of course, it finds all of us sometimes, but its presence in really can be minimized, in my experience.

I'm perfectly willing to admit that I discuss other people's behaviors and attitudes when they're not around. Usually I do it with my partner and it's very rarely malicious. It's simply part of the process of sussing out which parts of my reactions to others are meritied and/or justifiable. Sometimes I get confused or clouded by anger or hurt and feel the need to share with someone other than my partner. I find it's better to filter that away from anyone I think could be discomfited by it. Although of course I never know for sure if I've misjudged that, which is why all filters are opt-off.
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[User Picture]From: ironed_orchid
2005-08-11 09:37 (UTC)
I have filters for levels of trust and for reading. My generic reading filters are are public and linked to in a component in my lj (right hand margin). My default view and other, usually temporary, reading filters are private. All feeds and photographic communities have their own filters, it's easier to read them that way, and it means I can catch up wioth people's entries quickly without lots of distractions.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2005-08-11 09:53 (UTC)
I like the idea of putting links to your reading filters on the front page of LJ. Very convenient access. I don't like the fact that the Generator style puts links at the top of the page ahead of all the entries, though.
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