For a good time, click me…
: Alireza Doostdar is performing an ethnographic study of Persian bloggers and has much interesting observation on his site, including this, on the similarities between blogs and toilet graffiti:
A friend of mine recently told my younger brother in Iran that he thought blogging among Iranians was an evolution of toilet graffiti. I laughed out loud when I first heard this… but upon some reflection, I realized that my friend had made a very profound and provocative statement.
During the six years that I worked as a newscaster in Iranian radio and television, one of my favorite pastimes was to read the graffiti behind several of the toilet doors, particularly one that featured works by some very interesting and colorful graffitists. The “posts” were updated almost daily, and with some careful observation, you could decipher the different handwritings to tell if one graffitist had written a new post. I remember one particular string of graffiti written with large blue markers on the tiles near the ceiling, with their content mostly being verbal assaults against people who smoked in the hallways. Another graffitist once wrote a long and hilarious post detailing what he considered to be the “standards” of toilet graffiti, including “writing concisely” and “avoiding spelling-mistakes”. Other graffiti was directed against section and department managers in the organization, the pay-roll office, and government officials. The posts were usually highly inflammatory, often emotional, and always hilarious. Many times, there was “flaming” and counter-flaming around a particular graffiti. The posts would also get “hacked” every so often, with people scribbling over graffiti to render them unreadable. And once every month or so, the “administrators” had to step in, either washing the toilet walls and doors, or less frequently, painting over them.
He forgot one more: If you use blogspot, sometimes the whole thing just gets flushed down the pipe.