Vaguebooking and the Burlesque Performer

I can’t ignore being on the biggest social media outlet of our lives. Facebook has exposed us to old friends, new fans, people we admire, peers and beyond. I think facebook has been a huge toll in burlesque to connect both our peers and our fans to come to shows, to join classes, and general knowledge of what is happening next.

In my mind I can’t conceive that the same peers I admire can participate in the same controversy that happens in highschools with cyber-bullying. Burlesque performers and patrons alike are thought to adhear to certain internet ettiquettes. Etiquette doesn’t have to be written or made explicit, yet those who use it seem to understand it well enough and expect it to shape people’s behavior. Yet there is plenty of professional performers who use their Facebook, as what they say, is a way to vent. Seems harmless, yes?

Except venting is often passive aggressive, and in my opinion aggressive-aggressive. Performers generally are perceptive people, and know each other even in large communities. This letting off steam, doesn’t look harmless. It looks like cyber-bullying. It looks like a way to quiet others who may have offended you offline and it also can seem childish. I never see someone online venting about an issue for performance and think…ya you go! In fact, I often unfollow and even unfriend them.

Often, I have been the one wanting to say something, but the situation usually goes like this:
1. Begin writing angry rant indirectly talking about a situation.
2. Delete everything in the text space.
3. Do not post it and instead speak or write to people directly.

Does that mean I have always successfully conveyed my feelings to others even when trying directly? No. But I’d rather not leave it online to intimidate, shame, or potentially make others think it is about them.

The argument is, this is my personal page, I can do what I want. But Facebook is an online public forum. It is not a private diary.

It’s like that old saying, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I’m going to edit that because I think you don’t have to be silent. Instead, if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t vaguebook it at all.

Tassels and kisses
Holly Dai

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