Tuesday, January 29, 2008

'Liberated' from an LT'er named "HippieLunatic"

You are a Hippie

You are a total hippie. While you may not wear birks or smell of incense, you have the soul of a hippie.
You don't trust authority, and you do as you please. You're willing to take a stand, even when what you believe isn't popular.

You like to experiment with ideas, lifestyles, and different subcultures.
You always gravitate toward what's radical and subversive. Normal, mainstream culture doesn't really resonate with you.

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Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Peter Steiner Effect

In July of 1993, at the very dawn of the internet age - just three months after Mosaic was launched - The New Yorker published the famous Peter Steiner cartoon: "On the internet, nobody knows you're a dog".

This was instantly recognized as a profound truth; but it took some years for the corollary to be noticed.

Yes, nobody on-line knows your real-life appearance - you may very well BE a dog, for all anyone on-line can know. People know you're a dog in real life only if they know you in real life. You are what you present yourself to be.

Which lead to an interesting corollary of the Steiner Observation:
"If you behave like a troll, you ARE a troll".

It's not a question of "Oh, but he's really not like that - in person he's really nice". No.

You are what you present yourself to be.

If you're a rude jerk in your on-line presentation , you ARE a rude jerk. Nobody can tell that you might ALSO be a nice doggie in real life. Internet anonymity lets you transcend the limitations of the flesh, and gives you the opportunity to present your True Self.

It can be quite revealing.

And, of course, Vonnegut pointed this out decades ago, in Mother Night:

"Be careful what you pretend to be
because you are what you pretend to be."

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Tuesday, January 08, 2008

We Shall Not See Their Like Again

Sunday, January 13, 2008 - New York Harbor
"Witness the making of maritime history as fireworks and fanfare mark the first and only meeting of Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth 2 and the new Queen Victoria."

The QE2 is being retired in November, so this really is the only chance to see these three in the same place at the same time.

Now I have to find somebody to go to NYC with me.

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