Friday, July 8, 2011


I find it interesting how words can be picked up from one group and used by another.

In this case, "yabber," which is probably Wuywurung in its origin (Wuywurung being an Australian aboriginal language).

The commonest translation I have found for the word is "chatter," meaning "talk rapidly or incessantly about trivial matters."

I'm thinking here about a particular application of the word. Does "yabber" or "chatter" characterize the conversations which normally happen in the blogsphere? On Facebook? Through Twitter?

I'm torn.

I think there is a lot of chatter through these media.

The "A - Z Challenge" is probably a case in point. Every day, bloggers took a pre-determined letter, choose a word which starts with that letter, and made up a story, or told a tale. The story could be about something important or trivial. My feeling is that a lot were easy-going chat, simply because of the nature of the "Challenge."

I feel, generally, that a lot of postings I see are fairly trivial. "Tell us 25 things about yourself." Yeah, well . . . whatever. Do I actually learn important things about you through that process — things which come from deep within your heart and soul, things which have touched your life? I would guess not, though that might be true in one or two items. It strikes me as being on the level of two neighbours talking about "nothing and everything" across the back fence.

There is, I suppose, a kind of social glue that helps solidify some kind of community at some level. But mostly I see this on-line "yabber" as being like "small talk" at a cocktail party.

I'm not saying this is wrong. But I, personally, do not find much of it particularly interesting, except on rare occasion. Otherwise, I see these as opportunities to "play" with the writer.

On the other hand, there are stories of personal tragedy and triumph, frustration and joy. There are biographical or historical pieces, and issues of every-day living. I find these are stories full of heart and soul. They tell me about the struggles through which a writer has gone, in facing a difficulty in his/her life. They speak of time spent researching the character or history of another, or even writing good fiction, or finding something helpful to others. They tell and show of effort in good photography.

Those, I particularly appreciate.

I suppose in the end, we bloggers write what we want, and let those who like what we write read us, hopefully on a regular basis.

But my question to you is this: what kind of writing do you like from a blog? Chatty, light yabber, or well-considered stories of tragedy and triumph, fine photos, and other thoughtful writing??

(And please pardon me for yabbering like this.)


Also brought to you by the letter Y:
• young
• yes
• yule
• yokel
• yesterday

And from the New Phonetic Alphabet: Y for you, and Y for me?


potsoc said...

Why is this so important. Linking is the key word here and through all that yabbering and chattering and so forth people all around the world link like they never could before. Could the blogosphere be the embryo of through world peace and democracy? But then I may way out yonder.

Rob-bear said...

® potsoc: NO, I think you're right on. I think you're referring to the "social glue" of which I wrote.
Reminds me of what Rosaria was just saying, about leading, and following, and change.

Brenda Susan said...

I agree that most online chatter is yabber or meaningless blabber. I tend to skip over the "25 things about me" kind of posts. They make me feel impatient to get to the real thoughts of the person I guess.
I have enjoyed your alphabet game but sometimes skipped reading a post because the titles all look the same. Who knows what gems I missed out on from you!

The Blog Fodder said...

Two Ys for me. I am bowing out.

Rubye Jack said...

I suppose some people are born yabberers, but I simply cannot deal with blogs about nothing in particular. But if one wants to yabber so be it. It seems they are usually trying to avoid or get something. imo

Personally, I like to read blogs that share ideas and thoughts, or anything that is meaningful and something that is a little different each day. Sometimes I like reading about what people are doing if it is different from what I know, like the RV travelers.

Also, I like the letter thing. I always find myself thinking about the words that start with that particular letter. Have you ever noticed how many words of depression start with D -- dark, damp, dreary, dank, desperate, despair, distraught, and so on.

Frances said...

Hello Bear.

Yabber is a word I haven't used, but immediately understood.

Communication in any form involves sending and receiving.

Do you remember that old (from our youthful days) rock and roll tune, with the lyric, "yackety yack, don't talk back."

Let's see ... some more y's (not why's) year, yield, you, youth, yarn (remember I like knitting,) yearning, yolk, yellow, yummy.

Best wishes. xo

J Cosmo Newbery said...


About Last Weekend said...

Also think of yabber dabber do!... as in Yogi bear! Or am I spelling this improperly? Anyway it's similar, though think there is loads of little nuggets in gossip, chatter, yabber, blabber that actually is meaningful...I like that your friend mentioned the RV travellers as I did something on that recently on my blog. The cons family won out - confess i will not be RV-ing anytime soon...

Rob-bear said...

® Brenda Susan: Sorry you've missed on Bear's sharing of Great Wisdom and Eternal Verities. You can always go back and catch up.
BTW, glad things are improving at your end.

® Blog Fodder: The day you say Bear is 2 Ys for you, I'll know you're not telling the truth.

® Linda: I thought you might relish the more "meaty," more substantive blogs.
I want no more depressive dirges. Or talk of getting up at 5:00 a.m.! (Did it work for you?)

® Frances: Indeed; communication is a two-way enterprise. That's why there is space for comments with this blog, and others. The way I see it, a blog is only as good as the comments readers make. (You can quote the Bear on that one!)
BTW, yarn can be spun thread or a rambling story. Which do you prefer?

® JC Newbery: Precisely.
(BTW, have you heard from Lee lately?)

® About Last Weekend: That's Yogi Bear — capital B for Bear! Always capital B!
Then, there's the yabber of Fred Flintstone, with his "yabba dabba do."
The most interesting thing about RV people is that their life is constantly a "moving experience." (Like yours with France; took a lot of moving for you to get there, and back.)

Natalie said...

I love it all!xx

Amanda Summer said...

good points, r-bear. the yabbering going on here in blogville is a microcosm of our world. some of it interesting to us, some of it not - as myriad as the people on the planet. sometimes i want to stop blogging as i feel it is distracting me away from writing other things......but i do enjoy the folks i have met. even in a cyber environment - we are still all just people, trying to connect.

ain't for city gals said...

I like a little bit of everything....

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

Still relatively new in the blog-world, I enjoy the exchange of thoughts and ideas, some recipes, pretty pictures, and serious photography. I love the tales of travel and of absorbing like a sponge the geography and history of faraway places.

Most of all, I like connecting with people, developing a friendship like yours, sweet ours.



I prefer reading anything by a bear I consider a friend.

When I'm elsewhere, I prefer the person's real life presented with sarcasm and humor.

I stick with people who have real life horror in their lives, or the ones they love, and write of their true pain. I wish I could post like that: share my physical pain and get support.

But I must write only humor on my own blog.

larainydays said...

I decided when I began blogging two years ago that I would dedicate my blog to making people laugh. Every post. That's what people read me for. I'm glad you found me, thanks for commenting.

Diana said...

Well Rob-bear, since you asked...
I find that I like both styles of writing.
If I only have a few minutes to read some posts, I'll skip the long serious ones for later when I have time to sit and really get into the story.
To me reading blogs is very much like reading a neighborhood newspaper. We get to hear who's been doing what!!
And through that we get to know all of those in our "neighborhood".
As for me, I look forward to the laughter and the tears!!
So bring on the Yabber!!
Love Di ♥

Elisabeth said...

I'm all for the thoughtful variety of blog, Rob Bear, though I too enjoy the light relief of yabbering.

Still I'm more inclined to come back for the grief and tragedy type blogs. The deciding feature for me will always be the quality of the writing, the art and the photos but as well there's another less tangible ingredient that often shines through and meshes with my own sense of the people/ blogs whose company I enjoy, namely a blog's personality.

Blogs have personalities to me, just like people. And to me in blogland that matters almost most of all. Thanks Rob Bear I look forward to more.

Nancy said...

We call it jabbering. All the same thing. I do not twitter or Facebook because I don't really care what someone had for breakfast or if they are sitting in traffic. I don't really want to catch up with people from my past. My favorite blogs are ones that offer something up - like your post today. It was interesting. I really like the ones that are heart felt and honest in their writing.

Golden Eagle said...

I always like posts that are thoughtful and say something meaningful about the person writing it--but as long as there aren't paragraphs upon paragraphs of yabber, I don't mind some of it here and there.

Kristy said...

I like a blog with personal stories that have some meat but infused with some yabber at time to lighten it up some times. I like a whole spectrum of blogs that deal with life. I also like to read about peoples every day life and just good story telling . I also like foodie blogs.

cheshire wife said...

I enjoy a bit of variety and like all sorts of blogs and posts. Blogland would be a boring place if we all wrote about the same thing.