Opening the doors for the masses to speak, giving everyone who cares to have one a microphone--it has led to an explosion in people speaking. And most people, most of the time, are saying virtually nothing. Nothing worth reading, nothing worth repeating, certainly nothing worth remembering.
They're speaking, not speaking up.
But a few people...
A few people, people who would never have been chosen by those in power, are saying more. Writing more deeply, connecting more viscerally, changing the things around them.
That's each of us, at our best.
There's a cost of speaking up, of course. The cost of being wrong, or rubbing someone the wrong way, or merely in living with the uncertainty of what will happen next.
There's a cost to being banal, though. That cost isn't as easily felt, but it's real. It's the cost of boring your audience, of dumping 'me too' on people who have something better to do with their time. And especially, the cost of living in hiding, giving in to our fear.
Every day we can wonder and worry about whether a blog post is worth it. Not whether or not the microphone is working, but whether it's worth using at all.
It's much easier to spend a lot of time making your microphone louder than it is working on making your message more compelling...
The path of chiming in is safe and easy and carries little apparent risk and less reward (for you and for your readers). Choosing to dig deep and say more, though, is where both risk and reward live.