Does what we do online effect our real lives?

Discussion in 'Soap Box' started by ub3, Jan 24, 2015.

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  1. ub3

    ub3 Banned Member

    Just a thought that occurred to me? The internet can seem like a non existent reality! But is it more real than we care to admit? Is the other person weve never met being honest? Do they seek love and nurturing from the internet more than they do in real life? How does it feel to be abused on a cyber level? How does it feel to be loved? Is any of this real?
  2. Witty_Sarcasm

    Witty_Sarcasm Writer, Musician, Fun Lover, Magic Maker

    To me it is real, others may perceive it differently. I have connected to people and become close friends with them. Some know more about me than family members and I also trust some of them more. It also does hurt when you are betrayed by someone, the same as it would be offline. But maybe it affects me more because I am a sensitive person. I am honest online and offline, and I would expect others to show me the same courtesy. If not, they are not allowed to be part of my life, as I don't need to be dragged down further. I choose to surround myself with people who will lift me up, not the other way around.
  3. Twocky61

    Twocky61 Banned Member

    It really all depends on how people use the internet UB3. Anybody can be anyone they want to be online. But I feel even if they are portraying themselves to be someone they are not, as long as they are being supportive and friendly towards other people, that is perhaps not so bad as being horrible & nasty towards other people. The lesser of the two evils I suppose. Obviously if two people eventually meet real life & one of them is not the person they portrayed themselves to be online, then that is when they are found out to have been lying.
  4. Petal

    Petal SF dreamer Staff Alumni SF Supporter

    The internet has given me knowledge and a lot of it. It has also made me a better person, maybe a bit lazy lol but definitely a better person :) I try and support and help people online therefore I do the same in real life. I like to think I am a good influence on people's lives. I think it will vary from person to person and a lot of other factors too but I can positively say it does affect my real life in a good way :)
  5. NYJmpMaster

    NYJmpMaster Have a question? Message Me Staff Member Forum Owner ADMIN

    With the exception of obvious physical characteristics that would be noticed in person, people in real life can also be very fake and lie immensely about themselves and their lives. While the internet gave the ability to suddenly become 30 years younger, 10 years older , or a different sex, all the other lies existed just as often in the real world (jobs, money, where have been, history, married or single, sexual orientation, etc). All th eother feelings an demotions I think are the same since feelings are simply feelings and not "real" tangible things either.
  6. W Miller

    W Miller Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately, I don't actually have a real life anymore. My life totally exists online, so I have to do my best make a Virtual Life for myself now. I know how this sounds, and fully realize that people need to get out of the house and exists in society (in some way and not isolate), but, sine I've allowed my agoraphobia to take me under its wings, I rarely leave the house at all unless It absolutely necessary.

    The internet certainly does give people the option to be totally fake, and take on an persona they chose, since Is hard to 'pin down' people on what they say/write. I just never learned how to play the game sadly to admit at this age, so I'm often the one being fooled by others because I still chose to believe what people say online. Because I was never capable of fooling others (both in real life and online), people tend to run from me because they see me as a threat in some way to their anonymity, because I tend to (politely) push for the truth, and of course I rarely get it from people online. I don't think I was fooled in my real life which was well over 10 years ago (that I socialized with people). I only hung out with a crowd of those that were true people. They weren't all good people, but they were real - I'll say that much.

    I have seriously been regretting being so truthful online as I've been, and feel I should be more private, but I don't seen how to change, and don't really want to, so I'll likely get hurt a lot.

    OT: At some point, I might as well create a thread here an explain just why the weekends are so difficult for me, because I realize I've pretty much been saying the same thing, but never actually given a reason why. Now, this would require me to be totally truthful, but sad to admit, I'm at the point that I care all that much what people know about me - don't know of that's a good or bad place to be, I really don't. But I feel don't feel ashamed about anything I've done, however, do feel its something I can no longer recapture.

    Sorry for the nonsense ramble.......
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2015
  7. DrownedFishOnFire

    DrownedFishOnFire Quieta non movere

    I'm honest about myself online and offline and do expect others to do the same but I also on same hand expect people to lie so I don't take it personally when it happens. If I wanted genuine friendship with someone I've never met in person then there's ways to solidify their actual existence in real life.

    People in real life have lied about stuff all of the time, I think the internet is like more of an invisible cloak for those kind of people to continue doing what they do untouched. Just depends on the individual.
  8. W Miller

    W Miller Well-Known Member

    I see what you mean, and I take it too personally when I realize I've been lied to. I know things in the internet should taken with a grain of salt, of course.

    I know one must always keep up your guard these days (both online and IRL) because, things are not always what they (initially) seem to be. That being said, I find (personally) there is just a bit of truth in everything people say - even if its surrounded by mostly BS. Sometimes, people "clam up" and start backtracking, at least that is what I've come to notice, especially when they feel backed into a corner so to speak, or pressured to give up to much of themselves. This might be a natural protective mechanism (one I never quite grasped)

    I guess people should just watch for the signs and try as best as we can to "cut off" those that are being less than forthcoming as soon as possible (or as soon as we notice it) to not cause us any further hurt, but remain cordial (for our sake, not theirs)

    Just the world we live in these days.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2015
  9. justMe7

    justMe7 Well-Known Member

    Yeah I don't trust anyone on here to be honest.

    Too much bullshit. All online chat does is give you an idea and an opening. Everything else real is in real life. Sure sometimes people can give you support... well I can guarantee that textual support is just in your head. There is no substitute for a real caring person.

    People can seem a lot more caring and Alive on here. But in person? Whole different thing. It's easy to swing through an emotional spiral on the internet. It's a completely different thing to do so in person.

    But, I do appreciate and know that the time and effort people place on forums like this, or on friendships online are Real. They just are no substitute for a friendship in the flesh.
  10. Growing Pains

    Growing Pains Well-Known Member

    The way I see it...

    People lie offline (I always hated the term real life... this is real life), they lie online. People are bastards sometimes offline, they can be bastards online. Some people online are caring, some people offline are caring.

    People get hung up too much on online vs 'real life'.

    Do I trust people online? No. But I don't trust people offline, either. Because whether they are hiding behind a computer or not, people can falsify emotions. They can lie. They can pretend to care when they don't. They always have, they always will. Likewise, some people can be caring, can be friends, and can genuinely care about whether you live or die - online or offline.

    Everyone behind the computer is real. Everyone typing on this forum is real. They have a pulse, a conscious, thoughts running through their head. Whether they are lying or not, they are real.

    Since being online is part of life, I conclude that obviously it effects us offline.

    Also, I've been through cyberbullying and cyber stalking. I think people misuse those terms quite often. It's not just being trolled a few times. I mean that I was cyber bullied and cyber stalked by two people for a period of years. The two people actually knew where I lived. Yeah, I would say that affected me offline. lol It's scary, but you know? It's no scarier than being bullied offline was. The effects are the same. You feel vulnerable, you feel worthless, you wonder if you deserve it, etc. I think that experience - more than anything - taught me that online is real life. I am alive right now, aren't I?

    Like I said, people get way too hung up on this stuff. It really, really doesn't matter in the grander scheme. I remember doing my term paper in Humanities on this very topic, and the basic conclusion I came to after reading a bunch of rambling scholarly articles, and a memoir from an internet addict is that the internet is permanent. It's not going away. It is as much a part of our culture, as philosophy was for the Greeks. And it is real life. Therefore, one can conclude that it effects real life if it has any effect on a real human being (as it often does).

    ETA: Also, being loved on a cyber level is both kind of happy and sad. On one hand, if you do know that you can trust the person (have address, have met at least once, have exchanged phone numbers, spoken for years, etc), you know that they do not love you for shallow reasons. Many people I have dated in person, only showed interest in me because of my appearance. Once they 'met' my personality, they lost interest. This makes online love feel special. Because you feel as though the person genuinely loves you, and not your face... or your waistline... or your assets.

    However, on the other hand, there's the distance issue. Which is what makes it sad. Often, there is no possible way to relocate. Making it hard to manage it.

    In sociology, online romance is discussed very often. It's a legitimate way to meet partners now. And is often used by those who may be socially awkward, socially anxious, sexuality minorities (such as myself being asexual, or such gays or lesbians in places that do not have many openly LGBT people, etc), and even just people who aren't into the bar/club/party/etc scene. And many of them really do work. I know a lot of people cast doubts on that, but they do. The problem is distance. The ones that do work usually work because the distance isn't as great.

    My current partner is in Colorado. I'm in North Carolina.

    Imagine that distance, and you can imagine how sad it sometimes feels.

    I will say that there is no substitution for being face to face. However, the internet is beneficial for communication (another think my paper and the articles touched on), as it provides a means to get in contact with old friends, old relatives, and people from all over the world. Remember the whole theory that everyone was linked by a certain amount of people? That link is now smaller because the internet links us to people across the ocean. Which has actually helped society in some regards. For example, many in the most recent generations are less ethnocentric than people once were regarding their own culture. We are far more aware of other cultures than we used to be.

    That is, of course, just one example. There are many. The internet, like all things, is neither bad nor good. Merely neutral. It just is. And it does effect us, and society as a whole.

    And I wouldn't really say textual support is in your head. Not everyone has the same needs. Some people feel more comfortable reading that it will be okay, than being told it will be okay.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 27, 2015
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