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article imageBlogging Granny a Hit With Internet Surfers

By Chris V. Thangham     Nov 6, 2007 in Internet
A 95-year-old grandma in Spain has created quite a stir in the blog world. She blogs daily and has more than 60,000 readers. She is amazed that she is able to connect with so many from around the world.
One day, Maria Amelia Lopez, 95, saw her grandson using the Internet. As soon as she gave it a try herself, she got hooked and started her own blog (found here). She shares her daily thoughts with others in the blog world, which has attracted more than 60,000 readers for her so far.
Lopez says she first saw a blog as a paper notebook but has since developed a different perspective about it all:
"When I saw my grandson using the Internet, it caught my attention. I said to myself 'What's this? You can find out about anything. I want an Internet!'"
Lopez says today's youth don’t respect the elderly, but on the Internet, she found it surprising to see the reaction when young people share their lives and ask her for advice.
Reporters visited Lopez’s home in Sanxenxo in the northern Spanish region of Galicia where she was as passionate in person as she is in her blogs:
"I was always talkative, but now I feel more wanted, embraced, because so may people write to me".
In Spain only one in 10 over the age of 65 use the internet. That number is rising but not as fast as other European countries.
Doming Laborda, an official at Spain’s Industry Ministry, wants to improve these numbers. When elderly people browse the Internet, it will help them to break down isolation and communicate easily via mail, chat or messaging. He said the Internet is fun and always available.
In her blogs, Lopez takes about her youthful good looks and she is not the same as she was when young.
She says the Internet has given her a new lease on life, and she receives messages from far away places like Brazil, Russia and Japan. She calls herself, “the World’s oldest blogger” but she is not (there is another active Australian blogger, Olive, who is 108 years old).
Lopez cannot see the screen well because of cataracts, but her grandson is assisting her in blogging.
So far, she has talked about her long life through Spain’s vicious civil war and the long years of dictatorship under General Francisco Franco. She also mentioned how young men are different now than in the past:
"Young men were different back then. They brought us flowers, gardenias, violets, chocolates. Not like the foul-mouthed bunch today."
Spain’s Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has written to congratulate Lopez on her blog and she recommends other seniors also take up blogging.
In the end, she craves for broadband rather than a dial-up connection and says she wants to get it before she dies (I hope the Spanish officials listen to her).
Way to go grandma. I hope to see many others like you.
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