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Are you different online than you are in person?

Connected or Disconnected, it is a question that many people ask today. The first part of the question comes from the separation of what people now call the real world (IRW or IRL) With the two acronyms meaning in The Real World or real life. First, can I tell you that it makes me laugh that people refer to the world away from online, as the real world? To me, and I realize I did not grow up in the computer age, I was alive before the computer was big, well, that isn’t true. When I was little, computers were not big for homes, but they were physically huge. They filled rooms and basements and entire areas of buildings with a computer that was frankly not as capable of calculations as your smartphone is today.

The reason it makes me smile is that computers and virtual/augmented reality are part of the real world. There is no essential difference between you online and you offline. A good friend of mine at the University of South Carolina (although he is moving to a new job, on a tenure track at a different university) has been working on a study for a long time. It currently helps up in legal, but the intent was to see if people understand that we are in the real world. That what we see and do online, is still part of the real world. There might be situations where we do some level of separation between us and the things online, but the reality is, who we are in the same in either place.

It is easy to get lost online. To dive into the world that exists at your fingertips. With VR/AR, you can even reach out towards that world beyond your fingertips, but it is while part of the real world, no different in the end. There is not IRW or IRL. You are IRL in real life when you type in real life to someone. One of the questions my friend asked several people is how I am going to end my post today. It was a question he first asked a bunch of us about ten years ago. We were all together for a seminar on communication, and he asked this question. It was the basis of his study, and it is one question that I find hard to shake all these years later.

“Do people that physically sit in rooms with you, an nd people that know you online think the same of you?”

  • Question of

    Do people that physically sit in rooms with you, an nd people that know you online think the same of you?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Have you ever said something in a private message that you would not say to a persons face?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do people generally look forward to interacting with you?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Does civility matter IRL and Online?

    • Yes
    • No

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Written by DocAndersen

One fan, One team and a long time dream Go Cubs!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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