Being Genuine Online and Truthful On the Internet

Discussion in 'Gadgets & Tech Talk' started by Ruth Belena, Feb 13, 2015.

  1. Ruth Belena

    Ruth Belena Active Member
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    There are many Internet users who try to hide their true identity when posting online. They choose a username, avatar or profile to show how they want to be perceived, even if it is far from the truth.

    Some people do this deliberately in order to deceive, scam or troll other users. Of course their true identity will be discovered if they are reported for breaking the law, but they can get away with a lot of bad things before that happens.

    I don't mind if some people just want to have a cyber-existence that is different from who they really are, but I think when attempting to make friends or find a partner online it is important not to be too deceptive.

    I don't reveal a lot about myself online, but when I do, I hope try to be genuine. I will tell the truth, or at least a version of the truth about myself, without giving too much away.

    Do you think you are genuine online and do you mind telling the truth about yourself?
     
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  2. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    I like to choose avatars that reflect something about me, whether they are actually a picture of me, or just something that I like. Sometimes, it is one that depicts something about my character.
    Other than that, what I write, how I think and feel about anything is always really and truly how I feel.
    To me, it would be a total waste of time to do otherwise.
    Why make up a storybook person, when nothing you say, or that anyone else writes back is even relevant to one''s real life ? I guess I am just the basic WYSIWYG type of person, and don't ever intend to be otherwise.

    That said, I have known people who have an imaginary wonderful life online, and none in real life, and that is how they live their lives.
    My ex-husband had a girlfriend like that. She sat at the computer, her hair looked like she had never (ever) brushed it, and her sweatpants were raggedy, and her false teeth were out.
    Online, however she was "Lady Ravishing", and told people that she was an executive at the bank, and who knows what other stories besides that one.
     
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  3. Mal Campbell

    Mal Campbell Well-Known Member
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    To me, it's just too much effort to "be someone else". I tend to be myself online - I don't want to put my name and other information out there, not because I'm hiding who I am, but because I don't think it's safe.

    I do find that I tend to tone down my sense of humor online, though, because it can be somewhat sarcastic and ironic - it's very easy for people to take it the wrong way and be offended - and I really don't want to offend people!! So if I say something that offends you, just realize I probably meant it to be funny, not offensive. :confused:
     
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  4. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I am who I am, probably no more or less honest than most people, but I think I'm pretty much the same person online as I am in real life. Probably, I'm even more honest online because I have time to think about what I'm saying.
     
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  5. Peter Remington

    Peter Remington Active Member
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    Like Yvonne and Mal, I simply don't see any reason to bother putting time into ANY association if you're not going to be truthful about it. This applies as equally to my online life as it does to my real life. Lying in cyber-space, however, is so pervasively ubiquitous that I have discovered, to my horror, that when I say too much about myself, I am frequently disbelieved. For example, when it comes up in earnest conversation that I am a blind man with a PhD. in Child Development Psychology who had a private practice and taught at university for 30 years--stopping only when my terminally ill wife needed 24 / 7 care and insisted that I handle it all myself--it is supremely offensive when some snot-nosed, dope-soaked high school drop out who can't spell his own name decides to get intimidated and publicly declare me a fraud.

    I have always tended to be something of a loner in 'real life' because people are so often simply more trouble than they're worth, but now that she is gone and I find myself sitting alone in my house with very little human contact and no way to get around, I have been searching for years for a 'safe' place online that I could just chat with honest, decent people and be myself. This turns out to be INFINITELY more difficult than you might imagine. The internet, like all media endeavors, manages to attract the absolute lowest common denominator and you've got to dig through an incredible amount of crap to find that rare and elusive gem.

    Seems kinda shiny so far here, though. Anybody want to talk to a blind, retired psychologist?
     
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  6. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    Peter, I find you an enchanting person to converse with. You have an awesome sense of humor, and I love reading your stories. I am hoping that you will stick around here, and tell us at least a few more. (maybe we will have to chase another mouse into your "toy room" so we can have another "oh, Rats ! " tale (pun intended).
    Actually, I imagine that most of us have some interesting tales to tell, and with the shared stories of our lives, sometimes , a friendship will follow.
    It sems to me that if you have to be someone other than yourself, just to make a friend, then you have not truly made a friend, only your "imitation self" has done that. It is so much better when we have somone who likes us for who we really are, and we can be comfortable knowing that.
     
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  7. Peter Remington

    Peter Remington Active Member
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    Exactly my point, Yvonne. If we can't be ourselves, why would we bother. And, yes, I think I may have a few more stories to tell in the 'Oh, Rats!' vein. I'll see what I can do.
     
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  8. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    I must admit that when I started writing online I never expected to reveal as much about myself as I have done over the last couple of years. For a while I concealed my age, because that's not a detail I like to reveal to my real life friends and acquaintances, but eventually I started discussing that online too. I don't like to use my real name though, because I don't feel it's safe to do so.
     
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  9. Jenn Windey

    Jenn Windey Active Member
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    WYSIWYG or as I prefer to think 'I am what I am" I have been online for years, decades actually and I think who I am online is a very true depiction of who I really am inside. It is true, people hide behind a screen and sometimes they can be monstrous. Makes you wonder what is going on in their lives in the real world don't it? In my real world I have always had jobs that required long hours with a lot of isolation. The days can sometimes go by slow and I was always grateful for the internet as a way to find a degree of connectedness.

    It is not a great idea to give out to much personal information, privacy is hard to come by these days and sadly there are some people out there that are creepers. I think there can be an inherent danger in having a real life name or image online, especially in chats or forums. There are people that are fantasy prone and no mater how vanilla your postings might be, it is possible someone else might read it a very different way.
     
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  10. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    I judge a person by what they stand for and not their looks, or possible "challenge." Let's see, I am 69, over weight, have false teeth and live in a country different than mine. Sure, I'd love talking to you! I am sure you have some valuable insight as well as great experiences to share!
     
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  11. Teresita Campaner

    Teresita Campaner Active Member
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    Most of my time online is spent either freelance writing or forum posting. I used Avatar most of the time. Personally, i prefer not to mix my private life with my work online.
     
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  12. Ina I. Wonder

    Ina I. Wonder Very Well-Known Member
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    I tend to be a little too honest about myself, and I forget that there are people online that wish to harm anyone they can. Yvonne has pointed out to me that being too honest could put me in harms way. Because of that, I changed my online name for this forum. But, I do have to say that I feel weird about being deceptive. That is why I chose my second name, because I do wonder how someone could get a thrill out of mistreating a person just for the amusement of it.
    I too am on my own. My husband, and both of my sons are no longer alive, so I do rely on my online friendships to help me fill my need for human connections.
     
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  13. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    I think that mixing your work life and your personal life is probably never a good idea. However, I look at communication in a forum as something that I really enjoy doing, and since I have online triends here, I treat them with all of the consideration that i would use if there were my friend in real life. Because things we write in a forum can be read by anyone if it is an open forum, I think that we have to be more careful what we say because of the need to protect our privacy online; however, anything that i do write is going to be real and how i honestly feel about something.
     
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