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Bathroom stalls>blogging

12/26/2010

That’s what I read in a restroom stall a couple weeks ago while conducting unrelated business. My first reaction was, “That’s an interesting yet unsubstantiated assertion that merits further investigation.”

The fact that he (I’m assuming the author was male, for cultural reasons) chose to communicate his message by actually writing in a bathroom stall supports his defense of the medium. But that’s rhetorical window dressing. Besides, I’m communicating my message on a blog. Score one point for Team Blogging!

You know, ‘blog’ sort of sounds like it could be a word for what you do in washrooms.

But I digress. What advantages do bathroom stalls–call it the stallocube–have over the blogosphere? It sure isn’t visibility. You can’t link to a bathroom stall. You can’t post it on your Facebook. The only way to measure pageviews is unreliable and disgusting. And you’re lucky if your readership reaches three digits before custodial staff washes it off or paints over it. Of course, ‘permanent’ is the wrong adjective for a blog post–this is the Internet–but with initiatives like the Internet Archive, we’re getting there.

Maybe it’s anonymity. Discovering the perpetrator of a stall scrawl would require an uncomfortable level of surveillance or an avid interest in graphology–possibly both. Obviously on a blog like Batshite one is limited by strict societal mores and codes of etiquette, but a shithouse scholar can say anything he or she damn well pleases.

I think the real edge bathrooms have over blogs is exclusivity. The Internet has done a number on attention spans, and you can easily click away from a blog. Hell, you probably haven’t even read this far. But what else do you have to do in a public washroom other than read the latrinalia? It’s a medium with a built-in captive audience, basically.

Public toilets have been around as a method of communication for centuries–the Romans had them. Blogs haven’t even been around for a quarter of a century, and many believe they have peaked.

As these media battle for ascendancy, you can count on Batshite to bring you the latest developments. For now.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. The Goof permalink
    12/29/2010 12:39 AM

    Makes sense that verbal diarrhea was best scrawled in a bathroom.

    of course I do not mean literally, However I have gotten all the latest from the guy in the next stall once.

  2. Candice Pinsent permalink
    01/06/2011 7:11 PM

    ” latrinalia”
    thank you for contributing to my vocab.

  3. 03/07/2011 3:08 PM

    I once did an English paper (Bibliography) about graffiti and latrinalia made up one section. I have always found it really interesting, if not mildly salacious – but perhaps that’s part of the appeal.

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