22 June 2009

Poor, poor baby. Let me organize a pity party for you.

A few years ago, anonymous sex-blogger Girl With A One Track Mind, Abby Lee, was outed by British newspaper The Sunday Times. Backlash from the blogosphere was swift, virulent, vicious, and according to a recent article in the same paper by the same writer, Anna Mikhailova, career ruining.

Mikhailova ruined Abby Lee's film career - she worked in production, not as an actress - and now has the utter brass cajones to whine about Abby's readers ruining her "reputation" and by virtue of that reputation-ruining, her career as a bottom-feeding journalist is just not thriving. Awww. Honey. I'm so sorry.

I have a vested interest in this not just for reasons of anonymity; I believe that Abby would not have been vilified for her sexual escapades had she been male, so there's the feminist angle as well as the fact that I myself write under a pseudonym. My reasons for doing that are my own. Abby's were as well.

When does "the public interest" or "the right to know" trump privacy? When there is something illegal going on, certainly. But if I'm writing about my own private Idaho over here, and you read it and like it, why does it matter if I'm the woman in the office next to you or if I live three time zones away?

Of course, the automatic comeback to my argument is that if I wanted to remain anonymous, I wouldn't be writing on teh interweb, I'd have a journal that I kept under lock and key. Guess what. I do. Writing is part of who I am, not just something I do for fun. Publishing my struggles with depression has been both about my own recovery and about the hope that someone, somewhere, reads what I've written and decides to seek help for their own issues. De-stigmatizing mental illness is a goal of my blog.

Writing here about politics, the abortion debate, my silly little inconsequential life, is something that I enjoy doing. I believe that I have the right to do that under a pen name. And so I do not feel sorry for Anna Mikhailova. The line for the pity party forms to the left, please. Right there, that sign that says "Exit"!!

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