Monday, March 9, 2009

Online personas

I was nervous about this week. Excited, too, but quite nervous. I spend hours a day talking with a group of people online since I'm online all day for work. This last week I was flying to WI and then RI to meet them and actually spend time with them. Truthfully; I didn't fully know what to expect.

While it would require some persistence and impressive role playing to fake who you are for over two years online, it is not impossible. Furthermore, some people are very different in person compared to who they are online. I didn't know if the people I was meeting would be the same group of sarcastic hecklers I knew them as or if they would be really quiet and reserved or whatever else. I generally think I'm quieter in person, but for the most part I'm the same. (We hadn't been together more than a day when Eric made the comment, "Leave Tim alone for more than 5 minutes and he finds a way to get a discussion about education or physics going." -- He was right. It had been maybe 2 minutes till Mike and I were discussing math and physics waiting in line.)

Our group for the weekend

I can honestly say that, much to my surprise, everyone I talk to day-in and day-out online are almost exactly the same as they are in person. It's remarkable, refreshing, and very cool. They have the same sarcastic comments, the same jovial attitudes, and even the same hierarchical positions -- we all pretty much followed Eric around all weekend; as he put it, "people usually follow the loud guy in groups, and I'm loud."

I'm really glad I made this trip. It was a blast. I'm looking forward to next year.

Posted at the entrance

The most ironic thing of the weekend? This is a gaming convention put on by a gaming webcomic: I didn't pick up or turn on a single video game all week. My DS hasn't been turned on once, I never sat in front of a TV or a computer with the intent of gaming. All I did was hang out with friends and talk. It was worth it.

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