One of the features of our language is the layering imposed by social groupings. What we say to the boss isn’t what we’d say to our partner, kids or friends down the pub.
One feature of this layering can be its unsatisfactory nature. Sometimes it isn’t possible to say things we’d like to say in just the way we'd prefer to say them. We don’t have the social opportunity or can't take the social risk. This I think is where blogging stepped in.
Because we can refer to David Cameron as the Prime Minister, as a tosser, a duplicitous power-mad freak, as a toad mired in political imperatives he has no desire to change or we may decide not to refer to him at all. It depends on the social groupings we have available to us.
And that’s the thing about blogging. It’s a virtual social grouping where things are said which often cannot be said in physical social groups. After all, you can’t have a beer with your friends and just say how awful things are all the time. You can say it, but you may well be branded as a right misery.
So blogging may fulfil an important social function, a healthy function where social constraints on what is said about what are more relaxed. If we don’t like what is being said we can move on without losing any friends in the process.
It works remarkably well and seems to add something new to our society, something we have yet to see with the full benefit of hindsight, something with which we are not yet completely au fait.
And yes – Cameron is a tosser.