I was a reading a great blog post on Strange Days a few days ago about President Obama using the term of “International Community” several times while at the G20 Summit. The blogger discussed how our view of community has changed from “a place in which you lived” to “a mental state of identity or entitlement or power or preference or brand worship.” Personally, I feel that social media has a lot to do with this change, but Friday night as I was writing up my list of Versatile blogs it made me think about my own international community in the blogosphere.
I am a new blogger. In fact it was just 39 days ago that I posted for the first time with the goal of exploring the world from home. Simultaneously I began following a series of blogs and have picked up more along the way. There are some that I browse through and others that I feel really invested in. For example, I have never met Michael from Travel Thayer, but I eagerly read his blog about teaching in Korea. I have never met Amit of Healing Pilgrim but I am fascinated by her life in Bali. I have never met any study abroad students I follow, like Hayley from Turkish Musing, but I view them just like they were students at my university.
Maybe I am fooling myself, but I feel that through blogging, I am expanding my own international community. Perhaps I’m naive, but I honesty believe that if I ever found myself in Pescara, I could message Bee from If you find yourself in…and she would give me great travel advice. While I have never been a big fan of time-sucking social media, I have to admit that through blogging I feel that my international circle has grown. I certainly don’t believe that being a part of this virtual community gives me permission to disengage from my physical one, but I do feel that it can supplement and enhance our community at home. In the end, my international blogging community may not be one where I live (although Hubby may disagree sometimes!), but is one in which I feel engaged, invested, and inspired. Personally, I think that is enough for me to call it community.