There has been talk, in recent months, about the possibility of becoming addicted to blogging. National television networks have even featured stories on people who have supposedly been addicted to blogging. While it certainly is possible that a person can spend too much time blogging, to suggest that she can become addicted to blogging is to ignore some very important facts about the nature of addiction.
Addiction, in the strictest sense of the word, refers to a condition in which a person is physically and psychologically attached to a substance. This is the traditional meaning of the word addiction. It is true that the term has been used more loosely to refer to everything from sex addiction to Everquest addiction, but these are incorrect uses of the term. To use the term “addiction” in these instances lessens its true meaning and the true severity of the problem. Cocaine addiction, for example, will always be categorically more severe than being addicted to blogging. Real addictions tend to have real physical symptoms to withdrawal, as well, whereas there aren’t any proven withdrawal symptoms for the person who stops blogging.
Why is it, then, that some people talk about becoming addicted to blogging? Are there dangers that a person can spend too much time blogging? Can blogging be a dangerous obsession?
Absolutely. As with any other human endeavor, there is the possibility that an individual might spend too much time engaging in a particular activity. In some cases, this is merely a harmless obsession. However, the point at which the activity impacts other areas of their life, such as health or work, then it becomes a dangerous obsession. For example, if a person misses work so that they can stay home and blog, blogging has become a dangerous obsession. If a person spends hours in front of a computer chair while their physical health deteriorates, blogging has become a dangerous obsession.
How common is blogging obsession? There aren’t any reliable statistics that can really tell us how often this sort of thing happens. I’ve blogged for a long time, and I’ve never seen it happen. That doesn’t prove anything scientifically, but it does help convince me that blogging as a dangerous obsession must be rather rare.