dord (dôrd), n. density of mind; chiefly exhibited by one who attempts to demonstrate supposed knowledge --adj. dord'ish


Why Not Facebook?

I want to be clear about one thing at the start: I do not believe that Facebook is evil. Like so many things (including blogging), it can become a time-wasting obsession, but that does not mean that it is inherently wrong.

There's something else I should be clear about: I've never had a Facebook account. That means that none of what I know about Facebook is first-hand. I've heard about it, read about it, heard about it, seen it's basic layout, heard about it (did I mention that already?), but I've never "done" it. Now that those two things are out of the way, I'll get on to some thoughts about Facebook.

Why don't I "do" Facebook? The number one reason is that I know I would like it. Not wasting time is always a difficult fight. Between school related activities, checking e-mail, reading some news, and doing a little blogging, I'm already on the internet quite a bit. Should I join Facebook, I would add another time consuming stop to my internet visits. Yes, such things could be done properly through self-control and moderation; but, knowing myself (did I really need to check my e-mail just now? etc.), I'm confident that the best way for me to fight the temptation to waste time on Facebook is simply not to have a Facebook account.

So why do I, a blogger, feel so differently about Facebook? I could be wrong in some of what I say here--as I said, I've never participated in Facebook--but it seems to me that Facebook is a somewhat artificial social medium. I realize that the same might be said of blogging. The fact is, none of these technological interfaces replace real-life, face-to-face interaction. That being said, they can be a valuable means of keeping in contact with other people. Personally, I think that more of the benefits, and fewer of the pitfalls, can be found in blogging than in Facebooking. Here is where I'd like to hear from Facebook users: in contrast to blogging, how conducive is Facebook to meaningful conversations? How easily or how often does it become trivial? All in all, while there are certainly things which I've "missed out" on by not Facebooking, I don't feel that this has hindered my friendships (see my final paragraph, below). As a blogger, I know that even the best parts of interacting with friends in the blogosphere are only supplemental to really knowing them in real life.

That is my brief explanation of why I don't have a Facebook account. If any of it seems incomplete or unclear, don't be afraid to say so.

At this point, I am realizing it might be necessary to assure people that I am, indeed, a college student. Despite the fact that I don't "do" Facebook, despite the fact that I don't own an iPod, despite the fact that I don't drink coffee, and despite the fact that I don't own a cellphone, I do attend a real university. If this all seems too unbelievable to be true, I am willing to show you my ID and a few graded tests as proof.

Finally, as some of you are aware, I'm in the process of trying to locate the five or six other college students in America who do not participate in Facebook. Should I succeed in locating those who qualify, and should they be interested, I'm planning on ordering and distributing some t-shirts with the following words: "I don't do Facebook and I still have friends."



Why Blog?

Blogging is a scary thing. It’s like thinking aloud, in public, and. . . leaving archives. No doubt, blogging can be used for many purposes, many of which are unworthy. Nonetheless, I believe that it is possible to blog in a God-glorifying way. In seeking to do just that, I've realized it would be wise to lay out--for the benefit of both myself and, hopefully, my readers--why I blog and what my goals in blogging are.

A quick glance at my archives will tell you that I've been doing this blogging thing for over a year now. An almost-as-quick glance will tell you that I barely wrote anything for the first five months (not that I've written very frequently since). But, as every blogger will tell you, getting a couple of regular readers has a way of motivating one to write. The topic of my very first post was similar to this one, but, as my blog has slowly developed over the last year, I perceived a need to refine and add to the points I made at that time. That fact, combined with the start of a new year (is it still new? ooh, I'm behind on my posts), seemed to present a good opportunity for me to present my vision for this blog.

Reasons for Blogging
Ultimately, as I said at the beginning of this post, I want to glorify God in my blogging. Blogging is certainly a part of the "all things" Paul tells us to do to the glory of God in 1 Corinthians 10:31. Blogging also provides several unique opportunities, including the following:

1. Unique conversations: there are many interesting and worthwhile topics that are not nearly as likely to come up in general conversation. In addition, these conversations can be continued over a period of days or weeks.

2. Unique participants: blogging is a great way of keeping in touch with people who are not geographically close. It can also facilitate conversation among a group of people that would not normally be able to come together to hold a conversation.

3. Unique opportunities to develop my writing: this one is pretty self-explanatory; I definitely don't see blogging as an excuse for sloppy writing.

4. Unique opportunities to develop my thoughts: while related to the last one because these thoughts are developed in writing, this goes beyond style and sentence structure; I have found that writing about topics which I've been thinking about brings increased cohesiveness and conclusiveness to my thoughts. Striving to write sentences and paragraphs with a logical flow forces me to work through details that I hadn't so thoroughly thought out--such as exactly why I blog.

5. Hopefully, to encourage my readers in their faith: not that I'm packed with wisdom that people have to read, merely that if I can't encourage or challenge others with what I write, I don't need to put it on my blog.

Goals for This Blog
As I said, my posts have been sporadic at best. I would like to be more regular--at least 5 or 6 posts a month. This will be a challenge, but there's no way of accomplishing a goal without setting it.

The breakdown might look something like this:
--a monthly quote
--one or two devotional-style posts
--one or two book reviews
--some posts on whatever I've been pondering

To those of you read my blog and leave feedback: thank you. I really do appreciate it. While some of this is likely an ego thing, I have found many of your comments helpful and encouraging. To be honest, I probably would've developed an acute case of NOIRSWAIWA* Syndrome and quit blogging if no one commented. To those of you who read my blog and don't leave feedback... don't be shy; I'd appreciate your feedback too.


The Name
When I first started this blog, I wanted a name that would be both interesting and meaningful. As you can see, what I came up with was... Dord Defined. I'm not currently planning on changing the name. However, I want to take a few sentences to make sure that its intended meaning is not lost in its uniqueness/strangeness. (Do read the fascinating historical background if you haven't yet.) The definition I gave would best be understood in light of the following two Scriptures.

"Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him." (Proverbs 26:12, ESV)

"Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him." (Proverbs 29:20, ESV)

These sober me every time I read them. Proverbs contains dozens of verses on the fool. There is no doubt: a fool is definitely a terrible thing to be. Yet these verses tell us that there is more hope for a fool than for one who is wise in his own eyes or hasty in his words. I firmly believe that these warnings apply to all of life; I also believe that, in blogging, it is especially easy to be wise in my own eyes or hasty in my words. The name of my blog--and specifically the definition I wrote--serves as a not-so-subtle reminder of these truths.

Finally, a bit of recommended reading for all of my fellow bloggers: Bob Kauflin's series on Blogging to Worship God (Part I, Part II, Part III).



March's Quote to Ponder

"We have enlisted for the duration in bearing witness to the truth."
--Richard John Neuhaus