It’s in the male …

As you read this blog post, what you are experiencing is very typical. Or maybe I should say, stereotypical. A columnist for the Canadian newspaper the Globe and Mail, Margaret Wente, has suggested that bloggers are mainly male. And according to her, this is because it’s a male thing: men need to voice their opinions, and they need to do so before they have taken the time to think it through and form a considered view. And for men this is much the same thing as the inclination we have, apparently, to ‘get a souped-up snowmobile and drive it straight up a mountain at 120 kilometres an hour into a well-known avalanche zone.’

This struck me as stereotyping gone berserk. A majority of the blogs I read with any regularity are written by women, nor do I detect a different style in these than in those written by men. Probably all bloggers are exhibitionists to some extent, present company not excluded. But I doubt there is much of a gender issue here. And in any case, if you want to see a lot of strong opinions delivered from the hip on a regular basis, you can do worse than read Margaret Wente’s column in her newspaper. I’m sure she should publish these on a blog. She certainly has no hesitation driving into an avalanche zone.

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9 Comments on “It’s in the male …”

  1. Wendymr Says:

    You’re absolutely right about Margaret Wente; while she’s far from being the most outspoken of newspaper columnists (or even among Canadian columnists; you’d want to read Rosie DiManno of the Toronto Star for that – or not, perhaps, for the sake of your blood pressure. I stopped even casually glancing at her columns when she declared that ‘beyond the pale’ is an anti-Semitic expression – despite readers, in responses on the website, pointing out its origins in relation to the English Pale in the seventeenth century), she’s certainly produced some trenchant stuff. I remember linking you to a column she wrote on universities some months back.

    As for blogging being ‘male’, there are a few websites out there running software which purports to detect the gender of the blogger. Out of idle curiosity, I’ve entered the URL of my own online presence once or twice. Amusingly, apparently my writing is 89% likely to have been written by a man. I also entered the URL of the site of a male friend of mine… who was identified as over 90% likely to be female.

    Next time I stumble across one of those sites, I must run this blog through it and see what comes up!

  2. kevin denny Says:

    My impression is that a significant majority of people who write blogs or comment on them are male. I don’t know why although a female colleague who also noticed this had a simple explanation: they don’t have the time.

  3. Sally Says:

    There seem to be more women than men on Facebook.

    From my experience, women are also more inclined to live chat than men. I’ve also noted that a live chat seems seems to go on longer for women and that they use the word “I” less frequently than men.

    Please note that this is not a “scientific” study. Perhaps it’s a suitable subject for a fairly bland Ph.D. thesis.

    Bring out the old SPSS.

  4. cormac Says:

    what about blogs that are content-based rather than opinion based? funny how they always get overlooked


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