The internet’s a funny thing.


Really.

It is.

With the internet, I can connect and reconnect to dear friends near and far. I’ve gotten web-published. That counts, right? I’ve learned that three of my five ex-girlfriends are leading dreadfully dull lives, serves them right, really. Another is living alone with cats after dumping me, then hooking up with a friend of ours for a while, who went through all her money. The last is a registered sex offender for underage dalliances. Considering she was five years older than me when we were an item, I have to wonder if I was either part of a pattern, or did I set her on her course that younger is better?

Well, whatever.

Then there’s the other side. You can come into contact with some either thickheaded people, or just stupid. There’s one gent, (well, the character’s using a male name, so I’m going with the male assumption. Go with me, here.)  He seemed to be on a quest to spread his version of events that had taken place amongst several Trek fan film groups, although I don’t know that he was ever directly involved.   What did he get for posting and reposting on every site he could find what largely amounted to the same comments over and over?  Did he feel that he was standing up for something?  Did he just get a thrill seeing his name in pixels glowing in a warm fashion staring back at him?  See, I feel opinions are good things, and sharing opinions is healthy and good.  However, doing it online, you get no direct feedback.  You get no chance to clarify or modify your initial response.  It’s just…THERE.  Over-repetition makes it seem like the poster is less interested in learning or communication than in seeing whose posts are the loudest and most recognized.

I post a lot of stuff on Facebook.  Usually one or two of my friends are the only ones that react.  My various family members seem to never notice, or they’re ignoring me, hoping I’ll go away.  I posted about Perception, and how I’d finished the second day.  Not a response, no traffic here.  That made me feel useless, talentless, alone in cyberspace.  I know none of those are the truth.  But there was, if you’ll pardon the expression, the perception that that was the case.

Almost everyone I work with has tablets.  Those that don’t just get online on the work computers, like I’m doing now.  Hence, eight or ten hours can pass and no one says a freaking word.  Not the friendliest environment, nor the most supportive.

Back when I worked at Spotlight, they hired a trainer to help other departments understand what the sales force went through.  Southern gent, who was a little too I’m Your Buddy for my taste.  I KNOW what the sales force was going through, as I’d spent several years in corporate sales.  The majority of what he was sharing as Gospel According To Himself he’d look to me for validation.  Generally, my experience had been the exact opposite.  That’s how a lot of internet “debate” goes.  You say what you believe, and anything that doesn’t fit is ignored.  Have to admit I may be occasionally guilty of this myself.  I have a friend who posts a lot of stuff like that, and there are two or three people who always chime in agreeing.  Sometimes these things venture into the “If someone is nice to me but crummy to the waiter, he’s not nice” territory.  You feel like you’re having a private conversation across a dinner table or at a bar, but EVERYONE IN THE WORLD CAN HEAR YOU.  Some people seem to forget that, while other seem to relish it….

Which brings me to my final point.  Still with me?  Good.  You can’t ever really be certain if someone’s sincere on the internet, or mocking you, or even responding DIRECTLY to you.  I try to judge everything as sincere, but some of it is even farther out there than I am, so I have to judge.  Then I worry that I’m judging wrong.

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~ by Sean on December 26, 2013.

 
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