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Blogging in Exile

The following article was originally written in Spanish by Sebastian Delmont, a Venezuelan native who now lives and blogs in New York City. It was published in the first (and only) issue of Weblog Magazine, but is also available at Delmont's second blog, Zona Geek. Following the article, I will list various Latin American bloggers who live outside the continent. Translation by Linda Evarts.

For some reasons that I don’t pretend to know, a disproportionate amount of the most well-known bloggers are people who have abandoned their nations of origin in search of new horizons. Venezuelans in New York, Americans in Madrid, Ecuadorians in Mexico, Argentines in Barcelona, Spaniards in Montevideo, just to mention a few. And although I’ve already said that I don’t claim to know the reasons, this is no obstacle for me—as a good blogger—to propose a few crazy theories to try to pass the time.

If there is a correlation, there are three possible scenarios: exile is the result of blogs, blogs are the result of exile, blogs and exile are results of some other factor. (Those most knowledgeable about statistics will realize that I have omitted the possibility that there is no correlation at all. Those people are not able to see the irony inherent in this article or the absolute lack of scientific methodology despite the pseudo formal tone, and we are not going to pay attention to them.)

For many, blogs have become the door to the rest of the world. In writing a blog, you are inviting other people to know your life, and it is inevitable that this sentiment will be reciprocated. You ultimately read others’ blogs and discover their lives in other places. When you write something complaining about the public transportation in your city someone inevitably leaves a comment that could be summarized as “life is better in my city.” In the end, it becomes impossible for you to ignore the pressure, and you begin to feel curious about the world beyond your street, and without realizing it, some months later you’ll be moving to the other side of the ocean.

Others, however, were already curious before starting their blogs. Many moved first and then began to write. In the solitude of a new and strange city, blogs become the virtual connection to old friends, to family, to known places. Even those who are enjoying their new life find in blogs the perfect tool to maintain relationships with all the people back home. It’s not necessary to spend hours on the phone explaining to Mom how the new apartment is, only to then do the same with your uncle and later your old friend. You can simply put it in a blog and enjoy all the time you’ve saved going for beers at the café on the corner.

Maybe there is no causal relationship. Maybe blogging and exile are both results of some other factor. Maybe we blog to discover and we travel for the same reason. Maybe the same mental state that brings us to write about the weather or what we ate for breakfast is to blame for stimulating the enterprising desire to live in another country.

But after so much analysis I’ve arrived at a theory that maybe everyone won’t accept as valid, but if they leave behind their pride and look within themselves they will realize it is true. I believe that all bloggers living abroad leave in search of new destinations simply to have something to blog about, and because there is no better way to get new links than to make new friends in a new city. I dare to claim that bloggers immigrate abroad in search of new posts and a better page rank.

Latin Americans Blogging From Abroad:

Iria Puyosa: Venezuela -> U.S.A.
Vicente Ulive-Schnell: Venezuela -> France
Tiempo Conjugado: Peru -> U.S.A.
La Otra Orilla: Panama -> Israel
Marie Aiden: Costa Rica -> Netherlands
José Luis Orihuela: Argentina -> Spain
K-Minos: Venezuela -> Bangladesh
Martin Varsavsky: Argentina -> Spain
Día a día: Colombia + Venezuela -> Bangladesh
Julio Sueco: Mexico + U.S.A -> Sweden
Argenautas: Argentina -> Worldwide
Jonathan Molea: Venezuela -> Nigeria
Chilenos en Alemania: Chile -> Germany
Álvaro Ramírez Ospina: Colombia -> Norway
Afrael: Venezuela -> U.S.A
Juliana Forero: Colombia -> U.S.A.
Gedanken Bilingual: Venezuela -> Germany
Diego Sarraseca: Argentina -> U.S.A.
Rayas y Palabras: Venezuela -> Spain
Strolling Luna: Mexico -> U.S.A.
Almada de Noche: Bolivia -> France
Eduardo Arcos: Ecuador -> Mexico

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14 comments

  • […] Así muchos marchan al exilio, otros somos simplemente pasajeros en tránsito. La nota de Delmont, surfeando entre hipótesis para explicar la desproporcionada cantidad de bloggers en el “exilio” ha generado una serie de conversaciones desde distintos ángulos: la relación entre la calidad de las bitácoras y el exilio, o la necesidad de emigrar para poder obtener reconocimiento. RomRod conecta con el tema de la diáspora venezolana. Nuevas tierras no hallarás, no hallarás otros mares. La ciudad te seguirá. Vagarás por las mismas calles. Y en los mismos barrios te harás viejo y en estas mismas casas encanecerás. Siempre llegarás a esta ciudad. Para otro lugar -no esperes- no hay barco para ti, no hay camino. Así como tu vida la arruinaste aquí en este rincón pequeño, en toda tierra la destruiste. […]

  • I started taking photographs at a considerable early age, I cannot even remember, but I believe I was 15 years old when I started with a Pentax K1000 that used to belong with my aunt, who passed away and I inherited somehow. When I moved to the U.S. I couldn’t developed my photographs as I used when I was in Colombia, so I did what I thought it was impossible to me. I moved to the digital format. I found the media so convenient that I started sharing my photographs with friends and family through email, one phtograph everyday since 2002. It was up until 2004 that I discovered what a Blog was, so I setup mine, and invited the same friends and family that were receiving my email, to check my blog-page instead, which is also linked to my personal website where I have my arts portfolio.

    To me, the Blog is an incredible tool that allows me to share immediately the photograph of the day, without invading and exploding other people’s emails. I have seen very interesting blogs from people that live in their native countries. For me it is not a traveller’s privilegdge, but a time priviledge. It is more related with immediacy than to geography. Granted it allows the users to post from anywhere in the world, but their success – my humble opinion- is that anyone could have a blog without having to be knowledgeable of html or hardcore graphic design. And that’s the sweet thing about it.

    Thank you very much for making me part of the list of bloggers. I appreaciate it very much.

  • My weblog started out just being for friend and relatives back home. The responses to my work in Ecuador through my weblog have been motivating me, responses of people I´ve never met. The enjoyment of my work has been enhanced by my weblog. The weblog has also gotten met in touch with other organsation and potential partners. It has certainly been a great investment of my time.

  • Juan Exiliado / Juan the Exile one.

    A song in honour of refugees and the ones that are not allowed to come back because of repression.

    Juan Exiliado in the Spanish language, was written in the mid 80s inspired by social freedom workers from Chile and to celebrate a day in honour of the many people that becomes refugees because of their ideals.

    Gracias Victoria Undurriaga por tu inspiracion.

    Juan Exiliado is on public domain and can be downloaded from:
    http://asia.cnet.com/music/0,39058993,39262879p,00.htm

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