Thou shalt not blog
You may have noticed a bit of a gap between posts towards the end of January. I’d love to be able to say that I have been undercover in the process of smashing an international drugs cartel, but alas I’m not actually allowed to talk about my work with MI-6.
Nope, the truth is far more mundane than that. On top of a busy workload, we had to shut a blog down in the office. Not this one of course, but a different, work-related blog which my blogging colleague had been writing and I had been reading.
Was this blog racist? No. Sexist? Nope. Homophobic? Not even close.
The crime this blog committed, the heinous act that got it closed down entirely and wiped from slate was that it said that we were expecting some things to happen which then didn’t happen, and telling people that this was a bit frustrating.
That’s about it.
The argument given was that if we hadn’t told anyone that we were going to have something completed by a certain time then we wouldn’t have had to say that something hadn’t gone to plan, resulting in a stunning coup-de-grace whilst hiding any perceived inefficiencies.
I for one think that’s a load of bollocks. People are sick and tired of having good news and success stories rammed down their throats where the Council puts itself across as having done no wrong – this is simply codswallop. The Council is made up of people and is therefore entirely fallible. People make mistakes all the time, things get lost, work is delayed and (as in this case) external suppliers sometimes promise more than they can deliver.
It was not a deal breaker for the project which was being blogged about, in fact it was a minor setback which was entirely out of our hands. However, the adage of facts and a good story appears to ring true here, and as soon as a senior manager saw this they alerted our director who swung into editorial action like Piers Morgan playing Tarzan.
Admittedly there was something else they also found which they didn’t like. In one post a humorous aside was thrown in referencing the Iraq war in the same context as a bad decision. It was decided that if a local MP or Councillor saw this they would explode in incandescent fury, raining vengeance upon us with furious anger Samuel L Jackson style.
Firstly, the whole point of a blog is to share thoughts with people – that’s why I write this and hopefully why people read it. It is not to lay the official line down, but in that case it was to share progress and put a human personality to a faceless project.
Any debate had over it – positive or otherwise – could only be a good thing. If someone had a go at us for the late delivery of some brochures then we are in a better position to say ‘it wasn’t our fault, guv’. Likewise, if something we say sparks a response to do with us being frustrated that progress isn’t as straightforward as anticipated surely this is a good thing?
People are sick and tired of being pitched perfection, and we just don’t like it any more. Like the surgeons who wanted to promote plastic surgery found when they did a recent survey, people don’t like perfection and packaged fake goods, no matter how pert. People prefer things slightly asymmetric, slightly imperfect and infinitely more human.
I’d rather know that real people were running things in my Council rather than it being a faceless entity. If nothing else, at least then I’d know exactly who to blame if things do go wrong.