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by Jay Fienberg

Blog celebrity etiquette question

posted: Oct 18, 2003 1:07:42 PM

Last night, I was at the Metreon, here in San Francisco, seeing Kill Bill, Part 1. It was an early show and there weren't too many people in the audience, so I noticed someone there who looked like Rebecca Blood. If you don't know, she is like a celebrity within the world of bloggers.

Later, after the movie, I saw that this person was definitely Rebecca Blood, and, at one point, was within going-up-to-say-hello distance. Then, I had a shy attack, and started feeling embarrassed that I hadn't been keeping up with reading Rebecca's blog. So, I shied away and didn't say hello.

So, what do you think is better etiquette, a) saying hi and that you really like her blog (even though you haven't been reading it lately), or b) not saying hi because it's not like you are really a participant in her (blog) life?

I grew up in LA, and at a pretty young age developed restraint about going up to celebrities in public. I saw that it often made them uncomfortable and that they usually really appreciated when you didn't insert yourself into their lives more than something like a smile in their general direction.

For people whose blogs I read regularly, I don't think of them as celebrities—I feel a sense of being part of their lives. But, with Rebecca, I didn't feel connected to her in that way, because I haven't read her blog enough lately. So, I had a kind of "omigod-itsa-celebrity" response!

This is all embarrassing, and I think we need something like a bloggers secret greeting and handshake to prevent this happening again in the future. Then, whenever one sees any fellow blogger, one could just do the little secret ritual and that alone would be the justification for going up and saying hello.

(note to fully disclose my embarrassment about this: I also saw Rebecca speak about blogging at Planetwork in June, and could have at least gone up to mention that I thought she did a good presentation!)

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Comment by: Marc ·
posted: Oct 18, 2003 3:46:40 PM

Thnak God I relax you enough so you can walk up to me.

Comment by: Jay Fienberg ·
posted: Oct 18, 2003 4:22:59 PM

Marc, you *are* the equivalent of a bloggers secret greeting and handshake! Wherever you are, every blogger around meets each other. ;-)

Comment by: rebecca blood ·
posted: Oct 21, 2003 2:12:00 AM

I probably wouldn't have had the nerve to walk up and introduce myself to someone I recognized but had never met--but you know, that really never has happened to me, so I would have been astonished and flattered if you had. I suppose if I were ever to become very famous, I would appreciate your restraint, but as it is, I'd just be glad to meet you. what did you think of the film?

Comment by: Jay Cross ·
posted: Oct 21, 2003 2:37:10 PM

When I was younger, and lacking in self-confidence, I wouldn't have introduced myself. Now that I'm past the half-century mark, I introduce myself to people all the time. For example, when I saw Rebecca at PlaNetwork, I did introduce myself. We talked. And in that hour I also chatted with Mena Trott, Dave Sifry, and John Perry Barlow. This behavior grows on itself. After a while, you can approach a celebrity, saying "I have met everyone else here but you." They don't bite.

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