At a dinner with some friends tonight, I found myself recalling some stories and views of some members on here. @Azz has recently pointed out that we are a community and not just a group of cliquey forum members.
With that in mind, and given your own possibly outrageous views expressed on here, would you feel comfortable actually inviting real human friends on here rather than remain relatively anonymous?
After all, a community includes people that one actually knows in addition to the “theoretical” ones.
I don’t talk about the forum, per se. But I do bring up items of interest which have been drawn to my attention by posters on here. There are a lot of interesting views and experiences on here. The question relates to inviting others to make their own observations, rather than my acting as a conduit.
AFAIK, I am not a member or a clique nor do I express outrageous views - friends of mine that viewed the "old " forum with me found some of the members’ cliques and (mostly political) views hilariously obsessive and inept so were disinclined to participate …
@Omah Fair dues to you. I’ve joined a few fora in the past which, probably due to the small number of regular sitting members, have been extremely cliquey. They welcome you aboard, but have no interest nor inclination to toy with the concept of alternative views. Hence membership/interaction doesn’t expand from at most a dozen, and most newbies either give up or get banned.
I’ve also joined fora that are so extensive that there seems to be no sense of cohesion, and this either the vast majority are relatively ignored and posting to themselves, or there are specific small clique subsets.
My view is that this place has a sufficient number of regulars to make things comfortable, but not so restrictive as to be a clique. We need new blood in order to evolve.
The question is whether promoting real life friends might expand our repertoire whilst still keeping a cohesion.
Not necessarily. Most of my friends have completely differing views from me, and each other. It is those differences that keeps things alive and kicking, and provide opportunities for discussion/debate whilst still maintaining a mutual respect for each other’s intellect and experience.
Is that not what a healthy community requires for it to be successful, and indeed “cohesive”?
On the whole, I think we have that on here, It would seem a pity if we felt that our real life friends were unable to join in too and contribute accordingly. What are we trying to hide behind?
I wouldn’t necessarily want any of my physical friends to be a member of a forum that I post on because I benefit from what I read and learn from online fora and that indirectly also enriches my friendships in real life. That effect would disappear. OTOH, none of my physical friends is interested in online fora anyway.
That said, I’d mention some fora to other online contacts if they asked me as has happened recently because there are fora that go down or the atmosphere of a forum becomes unbearable for some.
I would have at one time, but then thought they may be biased towards my posts, therefore create problems, we could all end up becoming a clique , I would hate that to happen, as I’ve seen it on forums…it’s like there is the top man / woman on some forums, I see it on my other site I belong to, then many seems to follow their lead, and agree with everything they say, they also have different like buttons which imo is used as a pathetic ganging up,…so no I won’t want my friends to join me here…all that has been said by me, is my own opinion.
Edit to add…I also believe a clique is easily recognisable, they have a pattern that they all follow…I don’t need others to agree with me…I am true to myself,I’m not led by others…I have my own mind and use it…after years of being controlled by what comes out of my mouth by family…all in my opinion of course.
No, I don’t think I’d like my RL friends to be on here, or even to know I’m a member here for that matter. I like the anonymity of a username, and the freedom to talk about things on here that perhaps I might want to keep from my friends or family. And I don’t mean that to sound as though I’m secretive with them but, you know, there might be a situation that I’m concerned about, and want advice without them knowing I have a concern. Or I might want to offload about something - for example how a friend or family member has really annoyed or hurt me. I wouldn’t be able to do that if said friend or family member were on here…
I made the mistake once of telling my sister about a forum I belonged to. She began to ‘lurk’ without actually joining, and I was surprised to find that this made me feel somewhat stifled, as if I were no longer able to speak as freely as I always had on there.