Friday, 8 July 2011

Wandering in Cyberland.

What a strange world it is out there. Our words and pictures bounce about in the ether, landing in some places, bypassing others, to be read by goodness knows who, when and where.

Every single one of us could have invented a whole false persona. How do you know I am a woman, a mother, an ex-teacher, a dog owner, a gardener, a farmer's wife, an embroiderer? You know because I tell you so on my blog.

For all you know I could be a man, a murderer, a dustman, owner of a dozen llamas, living in a first floor flat in the inner city and never touching any form of art. Maybe that is what makes it all so interesting. You have to trust that what you read is at least one person's version of the truth.

Of course, it is mostly revealed if you actually meet a fellow-blogger. Two years ago I met Elizabeth on a visit to New York and we recognised one another across the foyer of a large New York hotel with no difficulty at all.

Today I met another blogger (Share My Garden) who is up here on holiday. She and her husband came over for a cup of tea and there was an instant rapport - we had a lovely couple of hours and I am sure we all look forward to meeting again.

So on the whole, cyberland is a very great asset. It opens up a whole new world of interesting and like-minded people - and long may it continue to flourish. And thank you to R and P for making the effort to come over and see me - I really enjoyed the experience and I hope you did too.

21 comments:

Cloudia said...

wonderful the world we share - even if my post today didn't update in reader or others' blogs!!!!!



Aloha from Waikiki

Comfort Spiral

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Jinksy said...

But aren't all friendships 90% on trust, even in real life? Until you get to know a person really well, there's much they can choose to keep from you if that's the kind of person they are...

Rebecca said...

When you think about it, blogging is a very strange thing to do, in some ways. It's a bit like a journal, a bit like an 'update letter', a bit like a magazine article... a bit of everything.

You just hope that someone, somewhere, reads what you've written or looks at a photograph you have taken and is enriched by it, or inspired by it. Whether it's doing something new, or just taking a bit of time for yourself.

Heather said...

I have often been surprised by the strength of feelings I have for some of my fellow bloggers even though we may never meet. If they have illness or other problems I actually worry about them and am really relieved when things improve. These cyber relationships are quite strong and most enjoyable. We do have to take each other on trust though, don't we?

MorningAJ said...

I think, even if you are a male, inner-city flat dweller with an interest in llamas, I still enjoy reading your blog.

Elizabeth said...

I must say that, so far, in my experience, people turn out to be EXACTLY like their blogs......
Luckily, blogging is not like dating --we are not required to loose ten pounds, grow more hair or whatever to make oneself alluring....

Yes, there is a hint of the post card
the pen pal
the mini article
the diary
the reminder to focus on a small image

I agree with Heather that I do worry about bloggers I've never met --their illnesses, problems etc.

Of course, as a blogger, one reveals only a part of one's life --the whole thing would be much too dull -- and the public part.
I have come upon blogs that are far too personal --and rush away when confronted with altogether TOO MUCH INFORMATION.

Anyway, I'm sure there are utter frauds out there but there seem to be enough simpatico types to make the whole thing wothwhile.

Dartford Warbler said...

It is a strange world....

I came to blogging through an existing friend, so I already knew that she was real! However, I did meet her on a natural horsemanship chat forum and there was an element of trust when we finally met. She and her family called in while they were passing through on holiday and now we have been friends for years and our children have all grown up.

There seems to be a kind of cyber-empathy between bloggers who have things in common, or who are at a certain stage in their lives. Along with that goes the sharing of troubles and of joys, but I do love that feeling of being linked with so many people across the world.

ChrisJ said...

You're right of course. I find I mostly frequent people who have farms or do a lot of gardening -- and those who tell about their walks in the British countryside.

Eryl said...

There's a brilliant documentary film about a young man who goes in search of the beautiful young woman he has fallen in love with through blogging (or some other social network), and discovers she is a married, middle aged woman with a severely disabled step-son. The interesting thing is they still connect, and he becomes friends with her and her husband. So, although I think you can hide certain concrete details about yourself, the things that really make you you seep through.

And Jinksy is quite right: most people put their best face on in public. And it's not until one begins to relax in someone's company that one's real self emerges. I've had more than one finger burning experience in this regard!

George said...

If all goes well, I will be my first blogging friend face-to-face next month. Robert, The Solitary Walker, is expected to join me for a few days of my walk of the Hadrian's Wall Path.

angryparsnip said...

I have only met one blogger and we hit it off right away and are friend who visit each other even though we live 8 hours away.
I like blogs from places I have visited, want to visit, tell me about their farms (love the chickens) or city life.
The only problem I have is that so many blogs I love are by writers and they much cringe when they read my everyday post !

cheers, parsnip

ArtPropelled said...

Yes, our blog world is a very strange phenomenon but it has enriched my life no end and I can't imagine life without it.

Jane Moxey said...

Great post, Pat! I think it would be fascinating to meet a blogger whose blog you read. I have a feeling many of us would have a lot in common otherwise we wouldn't keep coming back to each other to see what's going on! I have never imagined that people whose blogs I read might be creepy perverts...

Pondside said...

I haven't been shocked at a meeting yet, and I've met seven bloggers - I'm sure you're not a 15 year old computer hacker!

Rachel said...

Yes, I find it all a bit strange sometimes and wonder about these sort of things, like especially would I like these people if I met them face to face. I used to work in the Stock Exchange, except that by the time I got there it didn't exist as a building and we did the dealing by phone from all over the place and didn't meet anyone face to face. You would build up an enormous rapport with someone on the phone, with loads of banter (and I can tell you it was banter like you have never heard), talking for years to the same person, only to meet them and then be terribly let down face to face: short, fat, spots, nothing like you imagined and nothing to say, etc. So I fear this with blogging, not a lack of trust, just that nagging feeling that one is going to be disappointed (and who is reading it). And, perhaps like someone said, do I say too much personal stuff. Anyway, you can't check up because the other day I deleted my blog completely because I was suddenly overwhelmed with wanting to speak to someone on the phone, or meet up for a coffee, and fed up with computer communication, even with my best friends, and of course I had that feeling that bloggers get that they are blogging into an empty hall. However, silly me, I miss my blog already even if nobody else does so I suppose I will re-vive it - I have 90 days to do so and then it will be lost. Or perhaps by popular request I'll start a new one.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thank you for the magnificent response - it seems we are all of a mind. It seems that on the whole we only blog with those who are on a similar wavelength to ourselves, so it is obvious that we should get on fairly well. Long may blogland continue.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thank you for the magnificent response - it seems we are all of a mind. It seems that on the whole we only blog with those who are on a similar wavelength to ourselves, so it is obvious that we should get on fairly well. Long may blogland continue.

The Solitary Walker said...

Though part of me does rather wish you were mistress of a dozen llamas, Pat ...

The Solitary Walker said...

Though part of me does rather wish you were mistress of a dozen llamas, Pat ...

The Solitary Walker said...

Deleted your blog, Rachel? Get it back immediately, you silly girl ... otherwise I'll ... I'll ... I'll ... oh, I'll bore the pants of you by doing twenty consecutive Bob Dylan posts or something!

(Word Verification: sweat. Honest!)

missing moments said...

I lvoe cyberland and all the nice new folks I am meeting and getting to know. Like reading a novel of characters!