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Old 12-10-2009, 09:58 PM   #21
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I agree... avatars and signature lines sometimes give me a feeling of "should I or shouldn't I address this person?" I don't mean anything negative or disrespectful by that... It's just if I see a really "dark" or "brooding" avi or signature picture/quote, I will avoid conversing with that person until I know more about them.
I won't avoid that person, necessarily, but you are right (as I draw a line between what you actually said and I'm thinking now) in that our responses to another's choice in avatars will help dictate our connection with that person. If I see another foo foo-ey avi, I'm tickled pink. I fully believe in spreading the love, joy, glitter and sparklies. But there are plenty of avatars that might be construed as "dark" but someone else sees it as "artistic" or the like. Our perceptions definitely lead us to those we interact with and help outline how we may (or may not) approach them initially.
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Old 12-11-2009, 09:47 AM   #22
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I clip all the quotes out to add a little brevity to my verbose posting:

Boots13: First, let me thank you for participating. Knowing how busy a life can be and taking the time to be in a deep thread it does mean a lot to me.

It does make sense. I think, however, that sometimes readers don't see that. (and even some posters). They feel that you own yourself and what you've said means that you are responsible for how they feel. I suppose, as a complete fictional example, if I said that Wryly had no style sense and I knew that she was sensitive to those kinds of comments, then I am partially responsible for how Wryly feels.

But therein lies the rub: the reader sometimes believes that the poster knows EVERYTHING (and in some cases, it's truly EVERYTHING) about them. This gets back to this extra feeling of knowing each other more than we really do. One of my students said it yesterday that I was to have "ESPN and know everything that they do" (entirely in a joking manner based on tone of voice -- I teach online so I can't see faces but I can hear it). We forget, I suspect, that we really know far less about each other (the amount is probably the equivalent of dust on the head of a fairy on top of a small sewing needle).

And I definitely hear you on the "ME! ME! ME!" concept when posting. I too feel that wonderment of whether people interpret that as egotistical or not. It's not. I can't speak to your or Sweet&Content or Andrew's or other people's experience or PoV. I could share what I've understood to be through my PoV but I could never state that it is my experience. Then again, why do we really need to preface nearly ever post in those hot topic areas as "from my point of view" or "this is just how I understand it..". I mean, the virtue that it's my "voice" speaking, wouldn't it be my point of view? Who else would it be? It's not like I'm channeling George Burns or Marilyn.

Sweet&Content: Totally understand about work and life interferring with online. No worries.

Oh! Oh! I have a great camera! LOL..

It sounds like a common internet phenomena where people post as if they are truly anonymous, even when at work or with people they know. It is almost as if we can post without any consideration for what might happen. Now, I'm not saying that we are responsible if someone posts something politely that it's interpreted incorrectly. For example, I discovered recently that saying to the receptionist that she looks lovely could be taken in an offensive manner rather than in politeness and respect it was intended. So I have to change my language to be more respectful and neutral to comply with the corporate policy. Now, I respect the policy because I know and understand the reasoning behind why it's there. That's part of the adult in me (I'm still apt to get into a nerf gun war with colleagues when visiting the Canadian office, however, to allow the kid in me to "bond" and "relax" with friends).

But in places like here, there isn't a strict policy like that and people seem to post without any awareness of responsibility of their post. It goes beyond Boots13 comment about "ME! ME! ME!". This is more a true heightened egocentric view and totally ignores impact of what one posts (e.g., someone posting something that could trigger and knows it could trigger for someone).

Gemme/Sweet&Content: This re-enforces my belief that we do truly judge a book by it's cover (I'll admit it -- I buy books based on how much the cover appeals to me or the blurb on the back does). Is this bad? Well, in some ways it denies us interaction with others who may actually be nice and interesting but have an interest in "dark" and "brooding" avatars/pictures.

Do either of you use the ignore feature or your own mental ignore feature on such persons so you never see their posts? if not, after reading their posts do you change your mind? if you choose to ignore, do you ever change your mind when you see others who quote them in posts?

Andrew, Jr. : It can be hard to read joking or sarcasm. I've misread it a few times and feel extremely horribly when I do. I think it's good that we try to be honest as to the face we present. Sometimes people don't realize that we present ourselves as we are with the information and experiences we've had thus far.

I think (and if I may say this, Andrew) it's good that you are open for constructive criticism. This isn't something that we're always open for (sometimes, I think, we don't want to hear that right away and need to vent first before we get that criticism) and sometimes we raise our "hackles" when someone offers genuine and honest criticisms.

Sweet&Content: Much like you and Andrew, I faced similar issues as child (moving 9 times between kindergarten and before I graduated high school certainly didn't help either). Body language and facial expressions make it easier to understand what else may be going on. It's hard because it puts the onus on the reader to ask if what is written is that or if there was more to it (if we think that there may be more to it).

I think I got exposed, however, to some positive stuff (a balance to the challenges of school and having not a single friend until age 17) thanks to my aunts and uncles. From a young age, most of my interactions were with them and it shaped how I understood language (both french and english). But that has hindered me a bit online in that some view how I "talk" is "talking down". K used to comment about how I'd do this until she met my aunts and uncles. And then understood that this was a learned language I had picked up from them (debating is a family pastime during the holidays and at family events -- the Freethinkers thread is the kind of thing we'd debate regularly).

Gemme: Agreed. It is that, as I mentioned, "judging a book by it's cover" concept. Whether this is bad or not, I dunno. Part of it I can see as a protective thing and as a feeling connected with those of like-minded viewpoints (I like some sparkle but I do like the brooding stuff too -- yes, I'm weird that way). At the same time, it makes me think that we limit our experience when we limit our interaction (the exception to this is when we have to limit our exposure for our own good or to avoid conflict with those we know we don't "play well with").

I do want to thank everyone who is participating in this thread (whether just reading or actively writing in it). It's been awesome and it's been opening my eyes up to more and more concepts. And more questions (always a good thing in my book).
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Old 12-11-2009, 06:48 PM   #23
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I know for me, and me alone, I am used to criticism all the time. It is how I was raised. That is why I am hyper-sensitive today. I am learning to control my online anger, but I am not going to be a frontdoor mat.

It is my unspoken truth. I try to always be honest, open, sincere, and genuine. Heck, I have lost money to those who were in need. I never expected it back, but it would have been nice to have gotten it back. But that is on them.

Life is good if we all let our guard down.

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Old 12-11-2009, 08:09 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Linus View Post
Gemme/Sweet&Content: This re-enforces my belief that we do truly judge a book by it's cover (I'll admit it -- I buy books based on how much the cover appeals to me or the blurb on the back does). Is this bad? Well, in some ways it denies us interaction with others who may actually be nice and interesting but have an interest in "dark" and "brooding" avatars/pictures.

Do either of you use the ignore feature or your own mental ignore feature on such persons so you never see their posts? if not, after reading their posts do you change your mind? if you choose to ignore, do you ever change your mind when you see others who quote them in posts?


Gemme: Agreed. It is that, as I mentioned, "judging a book by it's cover" concept. Whether this is bad or not, I dunno. Part of it I can see as a protective thing and as a feeling connected with those of like-minded viewpoints (I like some sparkle but I do like the brooding stuff too -- yes, I'm weird that way). At the same time, it makes me think that we limit our experience when we limit our interaction (the exception to this is when we have to limit our exposure for our own good or to avoid conflict with those we know we don't "play well with").
I've never used the ignore feature. Ever. I'd like to say it's because I'm open-minded and all kum by yah, but it's mostly because I'm of the Jerry Springer era and nosy as all get out. I HAVE to know what is going on, what people are saying and who's going to get into it now.

There are certain people who, over time, have irritated me to the point where once I see it's a post of theirs, I will skip over it. That happens rarely though and is because I HAVE spent time with them, in this medium, and KNOW that they are asshats for one reason or another.

Judging one another from a distance is definitely a self-preservation tactic. Whether it's sure to be a case of death by boredom if I read XYZ's post or whether I am sure to go postal on them for their arrogance/ignorance/general natural selection kind of stupidity, it's in my best interest not to spend online time around XYZ. In that circumstance, I'd definitely do what I could to avoid them and their posts, but not at the expense of my own enjoyment. I wouldn't abandon a particular thread forever if they came in and took control over it.

There are many, many people in our community who have felt outcast and unwanted and have been treated quite horribly throughout their lives. I think, when they see someone's avatar for the first time, the things that are similar to what brought them comfort during their lives is what they'll be drawn towards. Well, not just those people. All of us.

We all instinctively seek comfort. For some, comfort is brought by way of discomfort and pain and darkness. For others, it's sunshine and Cheerios. For others, it's sparkles and glitter and gumdrops. I'm like you; I like both sides of the duct tape (light and dark). After all, it sticks just the same, right?
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Old 12-11-2009, 08:51 PM   #25
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Where is the ignore feature? I still can't figure that out.
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Old 12-11-2009, 11:37 PM   #26
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The ignore feature is on your profile page, its on the left hand side where it says ignore list
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Old 12-12-2009, 07:18 AM   #27
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:16 AM   #28
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no problem I had to go and figure that one out myself
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:47 AM   #29
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Really enjoyed reading the posts of everyone on this thread.

Since I'm not a member - yet - I have used the Dragon avatar - b/c it's my Chinese Zodiac. (Not that I'm Chinese or into Astrology.) They didn't have a cute little *chick* for me to use. As I'm typing, I'm finding it increasingly humorous that I feel the need the explain and defend my avatar.

As a woman, who has a lot of respect for herself, I find it disturbing personally, that some will give a full on cleavage shot, or practically nude photo of themselves. I'm not a prude, I have a great deal of respect for photographic art - for goodness sake, I'm an artist and draw full nudes - but the display of it - or of explicit kink - does bother me a bit. However - this is a forum for all, and I do accept all - Just sharing my nickel.

I'm guilty of making a snap-decision about someone based on their user name or their avatar. Shame on me. In my own defense, if I have opportunity to interact with that person, and my snap-decision turns out to be incorrect, I am woman enough to admit it.

I admire the honesty (Andrew Jr.) and the candor (Gemme) and the contributions on this thread.

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Old 12-12-2009, 09:06 AM   #30
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I don't see why you have to explain why you have a dragon avatar, even if you are a woman.

I am the only one on the forum, that I know of, that uses the Alien one. I try to stay different from others because I am different, but as soon as I get a paid membership I have already picked out my avatar.

I don't judge people from their avatars online, I judge em by how they act, what they say.
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Old 12-12-2009, 09:15 AM   #31
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There's many facets to the human personality and a writer may study these and learn to write from various places and the poster does this naturally.

There's a 'child' place that we write from and then the 'adult'... I've found that when someone is in their 'adult' reading what someone has written in their 'child', this usually causes a collision of worlds.
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Old 12-12-2009, 11:44 AM   #32
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I try not to judge others or other situations. As much as I would love to judge others, I have learned to stop myself. It isn't easy to do. It is human nature to judge. However, I have taken on the Buddist principle of judgement, and it has opened a door of peace for me.

For example, I am amazed over the Tiger Woods situation. He has earned so much money, respect, and so on and on over doing something he loves to do - play golf. I can say without a doubt, a year ago, I would have loved to have been in his shoes. Now, I can say without a doubt, I do not want to be in his shoes. It is a matter of knowing what his life is all about (from what I do know).
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Old 12-12-2009, 12:19 PM   #33
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Wow, what a great idea for a thread!

I have not been involved in very many online communities. Truth be told including this site I have involved in exactly two. I learned all I know about online communication around these parts.

Communication is hard. I'm a therapist, and when working with individual clients we frequently address how to communicate with a partner, friend, boss. When I work with couples 99% of the time communication is one of the major issues. Basically, I think we suck at communicating.

I grew up having to constantly defend myself to a highly critical father. Do I sometimes feel defensive when it's not warranted - I'm sure I do. I am not comfortable in heated or passionate discussions online. As several have mentioned I rely a great deal on visual cues, and without them I have a very hard time interpreting such threads so generally shy away from them. I do post occasionally but usually only after some deliberation. In person, dialogue, debate, passionate discussions are welcome; online is a very different story for me.

To be frank, because I don't like online communication, I doubt I would be involved in any except that this site provides community that I need. You know, as I write this I realize it's probably sounds negative, but my reality is that I don't like this mode of communication. Of course if I don't like it so much I should just leave, right? But as I said, I value the community so I stick around and participate as feels comfortable.

So, while I'm venting, this venue does favor the outspoken folk. I won't go as far as to say those of us who are quieter are silenced, but our participation, I would venture a guess, is a challenge for many of us. It often feels as though we are expected to "step up" to everyone else's level, but that's an unfair expectation. Of course, it would also be unfair to expect others to "step down" so we are left with a difficult situation, one that may never be resolved.

Wow. It was nice to rant. Thanks for listening - it was good to share.
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Old 12-15-2009, 10:32 AM   #34
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Question

I asked this question in another thread, and I am going to post it here. I have no clue as to how to read other's posts. For example, how do you know if someone is joking, being serious, being rude, being threatening, or whatever? I struggle with this all the time. I am a visual person, and always have been. The smilies help me tremendously.

I do see the punctuation, and but am Dyslexic. So words and reading comprehension is not my strong suit.
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Old 12-15-2009, 10:37 AM   #35
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I asked this question in another thread, and I am going to post it here. I have no clue as to how to read other's posts. For example, how do you know if someone is joking, being serious, being rude, being threatening, or whatever? I struggle with this all the time. I am a visual person, and always have been. The smilies help me tremendously.

I do see the punctuation, and but am Dyslexic. So words and reading comprehension is not my strong suit.


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Old 12-15-2009, 11:14 PM   #36
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Always assume someone is not being an asshole.
Even if they are in fact being twats, at least you'll be blissfully ignorant to that fact.
This is actually really good advice. If they are being snotheads, and you are just as sweet as pie, that will really get their goat and they'll wind up looking foolish.

Not that I'm sneaky like that ....
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Old 12-30-2009, 03:08 PM   #37
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I came back here to reread all the posts. I really have learned quite a bit.

Someone, and I forgot who it was, asked me if I knew how to cut/paste. I said no. And I really don't know how too. I just type word for word from newspapers and magazines I get in the mail. So, my question here is, how do I say that? I thought it was wrong to just put something in a thread without saying who the author was. Like I dreamed it up or something.

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Old 12-30-2009, 05:56 PM   #38
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I came back here to reread all the posts. I really have learned quite a bit.

Someone, and I forgot who it was, asked me if I knew how to cut/paste. I said no. And I really don't know how too. I just type word for word from newspapers and magazines I get in the mail. So, my question here is, how do I say that? I thought it was wrong to just put something in a thread without saying who the author was. Like I dreamed it up or something.

Thanks,
Andrew
This isn't like doing a term paper, Andrew. There's no exact way to post things. Sometimes, you overthink things and make them harder on yourself than they need to be. A lot of people do that too.

For example, you could type an article ou found into a post and say, "I found this and thought it was interesting" or "This is an online article I found that I feel is relevant to this thread" or "Look what I found!" I'd make sure to include the author's name, if available, and where you got it for everyone else's reference.

As for cutting and pasting or copying and pasting, find something you'd like to copy. Select (highlight) that article, song lyrics, etc. I start from the bottom right corner and drag up to the point where I'm going to stop at. I've found, especially with copying lyrics, that that is an easier way than going down. *shrug* I'm not sure why, but it works better for me that way.

Once I've got what I want to copy highlighted, right click on your mouse. You'll have options open up in a box. Select copy. Go to where you'd like to put said item of interest and right click again at the point where you would like the article, etc to begin. Choose paste. Voila!

Now, you are free to format things as you see fit. Easy breezy, yes?

Something else you might consider is just copying and pasting the link into a post. That way, those who want to can go into the article and read it at its original (to you) location.
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Old 02-15-2010, 09:21 PM   #39
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I decided to bump this thread because I have a question for some:

If you go into a thread and get "thumped" (whether by a mod or another user), does it bother you enough to leave a site? If so, why?

If not, do you decide to not go back into that thread ever or return later to check it out?
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Old 02-15-2010, 10:19 PM   #40
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I decided to bump this thread because I have a question for some:

If you go into a thread and get "thumped" (whether by a mod or another user), does it bother you enough to leave a site? If so, why?

If not, do you decide to not go back into that thread ever or return later to check it out?
Personally, no, but I can be a stubbornly annoying shit. Just ask my friends.

I may, however, see that I caused an issue, whatever it may be and take some time off to reflect on that. I would not abandon the site or the thread though just because of the 'thumping'. Leaving a whole site would take me a while to get to the point where that was a thought and then a reality for me. I'm loyal. Once I'm there, I'm there.

I come and go, subscribe and unsubscribe to threads all the time. I'm a bit fickle by nature, so I think it has more to do with that than the content of the threads or whether or not I was thumped. Sometimes, a good thumping is just what the doctor ordered, yanno?
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