by Maureen O. Betita
I’m not really a wild woman. Though it may seem that way for anyone who gets to know me through my online persona. I heard a radio report recently about the sociological dangers of the online world. Interesting information!
The specialist said the internet is so fast and interaction is so abrupt that people are losing the studied and careful manner we learn as we grow up. You know, think before you spew? I thought about it, and it is true, especially for the generation of my nieces and nephews. Those young people really have no tact or social skills. But they never really did. Snark is a passion for them. (Though I’ve noticed as they start having children that this is being tempered.)
What about those of us who grew up with all of those lessons on politeness and reflecting before speaking? Well, we’re slowly descending into barbarity also. As more and more of our communication is done online, we’re getting sloppy.
At least, that was the theory. I’m not sure it’s totally true for everyone. Yes, I think if you spend your life online, you’re probably going to have to stop and check yourself so that when in social situations you don’t open mouth/insert foot.
I check myself constantly and Leanne? You’re not the only one who apologizes a lot! ;-)
I adore online communication for several reasons. Firstly, I suck at reading body language. I tend to take people as they present themselves. (Perhaps because I’ve never considered it worthwhile to put energy into faking much of anything.) So, online, when taking the time to choose words carefully, with time to reflect, I feel less likely to be misunderstood. And with a back and forth, I can figure most things out. It’s words, not faces. I can handle words. (Means I’m probably very easy to fool on line, but then again, I am a massive record keeper and can go back years to support what I said and what was said to me. Remember this if you start an argument with me!) Also because I’m really not all the fast and witty in person, I like online communication. Give me a few moments to reflect with online chatter, and I’m brilliant.
No, really! I am!
I’m also a bartender. Online. And a pirate. Online.
I’m a little concerned how this is all going to translate next week, at RT. Even I’m not sure how this is all going to balance out come meeting people. Will they expect the bartender? The pirate? Who am I, really? I tend to be the sort who is more likely to be overtly polite than intrusive, so I’m not really worried about my mouth getting me into trouble. Unless I drink of course. One reason I don’t drink much!
I’d like to think I’m all these online people, and able to communicate as all of them. Who are you online? And if you’re going to RT and meet me, you can hold up a sign, let me know who you want to talk to! ;-)