January 12th- The 2009 Protagonists' Diary

Dear Diary,

I feel uneasy.

Why do I feel uneasy?  Well, Diary, you may well ask.  It could be because of all these stories being started where people are being tagged. 

I've been tagged for quite a few and that's fine, for me.  I welcomed it.  It made me feel wanted.  But is it as fine for everyone?   It seems to me that there are the same few people being tagged each time.  Yes, we are probably the prolific ones; the ones who post a lot and comment a lot, but how about those who haven't been here in a while?  How about the people who write well, but not often?

Yes, yes, I know that there are a few random "Anyone" branches.  That's all very well, but what if people won't add for the very reason that they have not been called by name in the first place?  Could it be that they are hesitant to add, because they're not popular enough?  Because they feel that their contribution won't be welcome,

Oh, Diary, I don't know.  If I try and put myself in the place of people here who see these things being started, and maybe, just maybe, look at all the branch titles, and and look... and see... no, my name isn't there... again.  Might I feel a little bit unpopular?   Might I feel as if I were back at school again, and being chosen for sides, and it's all the popular kids being picked first?

Yes, there is, no doubt,  some great prose and poetry being written, but we already know that the people being picked can write well, don't we?  They would probably be the ones to add, even if the branches were not named and tags/invitations flying about.  But maybe we should make this a level playing field?  I don't know.  Maybe I'm wrong about this. 

I should just say, Diary, that all these "stories" are brilliant ideas in themselves, and there's no doubt that it is challenging to be given a title or a fragment and try and come up with something, but I do feel that it could be harmful to the site, and potentially hurtful, to some people here.  Naturally, this was never the intention of the people who started them.  The stories have turned out to be very popular.  I loved responding to mine, and I have been as eager as anyone else to tag other people.

But then I started to wonder about the others.  Also, when I read JenJadeEyes post yesterday, I wondered what sort of impression new users would get, if they click on the "activity" feed and see all these tags and invites flying about.  Would they bother to stay, thinking that adding here was by invitation only - that it's how this place works?   I'm pretty sure that's what it would look like to me, if I happened to stumble upon Protag for the first time and had a quick look around, and if I thought that, I might not be willing to stick around, because how do I get popular enough to be invited?

I'm also uneasy that other, sequential "conventional" stories are being neglected since this trend has started.  I hope that's just a phase, Diary. 

I'm glad I got that off my chest.  I'm also pleased that nobody else can read this diary, or I might have to duck...


The End

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