Do you exercise self-censorship?

So, someone told me that my blog has been, and I quote “less than insightful” recently..

“What happened to your editorial pieces?  Your experiences!  I mean.. reading about what you eat and the latest bad advertisement is fun and all, but I miss reading about your cultural insights..” he said.

If you know anything about me, I don’t take criticism well.. I never have and probably never will..this being so, it took every ounce of self restraint to sit and listen to his complaints.

And while my first reaction is to get all defensive and hot headed, I have to admit that I have been exercising quite a bit of self-censorship recently…and have been having a hard time coming up with topics that are interesting, exciting, entertaining, and most importantly new.  It’s not easy putting a new twist on an old topic!  Especially when all of your readers are experts on the topic of your blog and have very little tolerance for inaccuracies and stupidities!

You see, I started my blog as a way to keep my friends and family back home up to date with all of things I was seeing, experiencing, and feeling since my move to Lebanon..everything was new to them..but fast forward seven months, and things have changed..a lot.

Most of my readers aren’t my friends and family from back home (bad friends, bad family! why don’t you ever read my blogs! arghh!), but rather fellow Lebanese bloggers, Lebanese tweeps, and others who have so kindly accepted me into what I will call the Lebanese Blogosphere and Twittersphere..My readers have become my friends..they know me by name, they know what I look like, they know about my life and where I come from..and hell, some of them even know where I live!

And although I may want to talk about politics, religion, sex and sexuality, and Lebanese customs that I don’t understand and probably never will, the fact remains that I’m a foreigner in a foreign land, and as such, I have a responsibility to be respectful to Lebanon and to the Lebanese people.  So, if you want to hear my opinions about these topics, talk to me in person..I will never be bored.

So this is me, exercising self-censorship on my blog..

I hope you still find it entertaining, informative, and insightful..even if only some of the time!

– Dani. 🙂



Filed under life in Lebanon

13 responses to “Do you exercise self-censorship?

  1. The most beautiful thing I find up there in what you wrote is the character you portray by being 1000% honest while sharing whatever it is you share.
    Please keep doing that, no matter how hard or simple it is, the people reading your blog and who accept you know and respect YOU.
    Self censorship might help but will not show the world your ultimate true being. I believe there are insights in the most basic sentences since they are coming FROM YOU and that is what makes it all interesting.

    People should feel interest, respect and humility to know someone who came from the biggest and most advanced country in the world, to live in a small country with much hype in the Middle East!

    At least I know I do.
    Much respect and admiration!

  2. Mustapha

    What is this I’m reading D? Your blog’s biggest value is that it shows the Lebanese how outsiders see them.
    People who are offended should look somewhere else.

    Think of that letter you got. What did it do? First it pissed you off, but then you reflected and thought of what he said, and as a result, hopefully, you will have a more mature blog.

    This is the role your blog should play. So far you’re afraid you’ll offend people, but then, they’ll realize they’re learning something new about themselves.

  3. Dar El Akhdar

    Dani, Dani, Dani…

    The reason why people are increasingly following your blog is because it’s RAW and REAL! 🙂

    Most of the people following you are fed up with the level of “fakeness” in this country and your blog constitutes a well-needed dose of reality coming from a fresh pair of curious investigative eyes

    Personally, I’m also interested in understanding your perspective on our daily Lebanese lives – in ALL its facets: from the money-carrying petrol station worker to your attempts at learning more about your host country’s traditions and socio-political contexts

    And as for your family, I’m sure that they would feel real proud of you knowing that you are engaging with – and affecting the lives of – so many of us in the Lebanese blogosphere and Twittersphere

    Keep us looking forward to your next post 😉
    –Dar El Akhdar

  4. Your blog was one of the first blogs I read when I started getting involved in the Lebanese Blogosphere and I loved it from the get-go.

    Don’t give urself a hard time! You shouldn’t feel like a foreigner in a foreign land.

    I remember I was surprised when I found out you’re not originally from here cause ur posts showed that u were very knowledgeable of Lebanon and Lebanese culture just like any other Lebanese person.

    You don’t have to have a piece of paper that says “Lived on Lebanese soil for more than 10 years” to be considered Lebanese.

    You get the Lebanese spirit and your blog introduces people to a different side of Lebanon that they’ve never seen before…and that’s just awesome!

    To be honest I wouldn’t want you to practice self- censorship cause at the end of the day, people should respect each other’s opinions no matter what. But I respect your decision…

    Keep up the amazin work girl =)

  5. I completely agree with everyone above. I honestly look forward to reading your posts – don’t change anything.

  6. Lisa

    But your family does read your blog … almost daily … and we are proud of you (we even leave the odd comment).

  7. yourfriend

    Get ready for the cheesy…
    Originality in
    Just &

    keep up the fantastic work girl!!

  8. yourfriend

    Get ready for the cheese…
    Originality in
    Just &

    keep up the fantastic work girl!!

  9. Simon

    ditto to all above comments…

    The fact that ur a foreigner blogging about lebanon is wat makes this blog so interesting and such a great read.

    I’m an australian of lebanese background, moving to lebanon soon, and i always look forward for your next post.
    Its like your blog is a guide to those who did the move (or will do it) and always felt like it’s giving me the heads up on what to expect…

    Keep up the great work 🙂

  10. I do censor myself up to a certain degree, I think that’s human nature. However, I do believe that there are things we notice and see everyday that should be said, no matter the consequences. You should try to criticize, question and investigate as much as possible in the things you see that bother or shock or surprise you, especially since you come from a different background from the rest of us. Your opinion will be different than ours and you may see things that we miss merely out of habit.

    So, keep your blog as it is, since it is in fact one of my favorites, but do not go overboard with self-censorship. We’d like to hear your views too!

  11. Martin Scott

    This is one of the best things you have ever written. If only because it shows that you keep growing and thinking. Those who never have doubts are in need of a mirror. You are now able to move to the next stage. That is to be insightful and even controversial but always with respect. You do not have to agonize over “new” or “interesting” topics. The topics can be seemingly mundane but if they reflect your observations, with respect, then they will be interesting.

  12. Mom

    I have to stick up for the family … besides Lisa and Grampa, I also read your blog regularly … in fact, I have read every single post AND comment!!!! As your Mom I am thrilled that you have kept it up because it has truly allowed me to learn a lot about Beirut and about the Lebanese culture. Also, through your posts I am able to see that you are thriving there personally and professionally and gaining life experiences that are totally unique. I am completely BLOWN AWAY by the fact that you have amassed such a loyal local following and I am soooo very proud of you. Keep it up!!!!

  13. Awesome blog! I haven’t bumped on before in my searches!
    Keep up the hard work! I think this video might be interesting for your readers:

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