When I learned that a few bloggers changed their domain or their Blogs name to avoid a virtual stalker I marveled at the power a reader ghost can have on a writer. Why, I argued. Writing is public and once placed on cyber world it's anyone’s property. A writer should not have their right to write impaired by anyone who reads their prose, poetry, or essays regardless of their motives.
What about when you identify that stalker and you know their motives? When you know that lurker reader comes at a certain time, from a certain IP and it is not someone who enjoys your writing, but someone you know and whose interest in your posts is not genuine? Someone who lurks in the realms of obscurity to get an inside into your life and your whereabouts. Someone who perhaps will use what they read, misread and misconstrued in their own benefit. Someone you know. Then your freedom is impaired.
As much as you, the writer, want to dismiss their presence, you know they are watching you and slowly you start being careful in your writing, too careful. You no longer write that sentence the way you wanted it, but you question what Lurker will think, will Lurker think it’s about them? Will you receive an anonymous threatening or nasty comment that will force you to enable your comment moderation? And as you angrily acknowledge that Lurker is impeding in your writing, you must also marvel at the power you have on Lurker. It is an unwanted power bestowed on you and one you would relinquish in a heartbeat. You don’t want Lurker, but Lurker wants to know about you.
Lurker wants you.
It becomes then a test to your integrity, yours not Lurker’s. It is obvious Lurker does not worry about their own integrity. You realize that you were granted a gift when you found your love for writing and you know your writing is yours and no one, not Lurker should have a shot at interfering in your creativity. You write with integrity because that is what you were gifted with and you realize you cannot allow Lurker to intrude in your writing simply because Lurker has no value in your day even if in Lurker’s day you have a lot of value.