Two of my twitter friends – Jo McLeay, John Pearce (both of whom I met f2f for the first time) and my dear ‘real world’ friend and teaching colleague, Jess McCulloch.
At a recent conference in Melbourne, I was rather excited at the prospect of meeting some of my online twitter friends. My online friends are very much a part of my friendship group and I regard them with great fondness.
However, I had some difficulty recognizing them. Why? Well… like me they put their best photos up or an avatar. My photo is 4 years old now, but I like it. Yet, my hair is cut differently and I have probably aged “10” years in that time.
One of my friends @bookjewel told me on twitter that she was going to be there but I could not trace her at all and assumed she may not even have come. When I tweeted her the next week, she was there but also said she did not recognize anyone. However, at one stage I got up on the podium and spoke about the online conferencing and social networking that I have been involved in. Why did I not find @bookjewel?
- I did not know her real name
- She has an avatar for her online presence
- I have a user name of murcha, but my real name is Anne Mirtschin
- I have my best photo up as my avatar.
I guess that means that basic cyber safety rules and procedures do work. Kim Cofino has written a recent post on the same topic of virtual friends and this makes an interesting read as well.
When I reflected on this on twitter, @adrianbruce gave me this reply….
I look forward to meeting even more twitter friends on Saturday at the ICTEV conference in Melbourne – ie if I ‘recognize’ them.
Are there any comments or other enlightenments on this interesting phenomena?