Weblogs are conversations
Last Saturday I found out that Russel Beattie is reading my Italian weblog.
Somehow it came unexpected, it's true that I write differently on my English and my Italian weblogs and maybe I didn't expect any of my "not Italian" readers to read my Italian weblog. So I started thinking why and how I do it. Of course, the most logical answer is that I find easier writing in Italian than in English, but it goes further than that.
I almost never cross-post, before writing each post I decide if it's going to be in English or in Italian. When the post is part of an ongoing thread happening on other weblogs it's easy, I simply write using the language of the other participants to the discussion. When it's something new or unrelated I simply decide who I want to "talk to".
Also if probably some Italian readers read both my weblogs, I perceive my readers to be pretty much divided in two different and separated groups.
So while there are issues I prefer to keep off my English weblog, such as Italian politics (desperately hoping that the word about what's going on here does not get out from the country, it would be too embarrassing), I tend to write technical-oriented posts on my English weblog because it's more likely that I will get a reply or an opinion from the broader international audience.
The most interesting thing I noticed comparing the two weblogs is not so much related to what I write but to what I do not write on these pages. For example, while I would never dream to start explaining what RSS is on my English weblog I did it on my Italian one and when I write about Italian issues on my English weblog I often have to describe a context which I don't need to define on my Italian one.
Also if it is a one-to-many way of communicating, the very fact that I decide who I'm going to write to and expect some kind of feedback from this activity make all these true conversations.