I received another suggestion for the “The New and Improved Ass Kicking Thursday Afternoon Afternoon Inquisition”. As you may recall, these are questions you all send in when you have something important you’d like the readers to discuss, or when you can tell that I’m totally out of good ideas. (Use the comments or contact page to suggest more.)
Today’s topic comes from Skepchick reader, Anthony, who has some of the same concerns many of us have about participating in online discussions. Says Anthony:
I am a long-time lurker here, and I want to say that I’m a big fan of everything you guys do.
I look around here, and I hear about how this one is defending her dissertation, and that one has a masters degree in whateverology, etc, etc. Whenever I try to comment on a topic, I feel a tremendous amount of anxiety over what the readers of that comment might think.
Is it well written? Spelled correctly? Grammatically correct? After the 5th or 6th edit, I usually give up and move on. I don’t voice my opinion, even on a topic that I feel strongly about. I believe that I’m going to be met with constant ridicule, or that my comment will be ignored (which is worse, actually) or that what I might say will be so bad that you’ll ban my IP address, and I won’t be allowed to read this blog anymore.
I’d like to know how common my situation is. How many folks out there are intimidated by the audience?
Okay, all you lurkers out there, please de-lurk for today and answer Anthony’s Inquiry.
The Afternoon Inquisition (or AI) is a question posed to you, the Skepchick community. Look for it to appear Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays at 3pm ET. And the New and Improved Ass Kicking Thursday Afternoon Afternoon Inquisition is something Sam made up. Look for it to appear when Sam is out of ideas, sick, or just too drunk to even blink.