Wow, this almost warrants an entire new blogpost. But for the sake of continuing the conversation, I will post here. I remember just shortly before rhizo14 started i was talking to Jesse Stommel about this idea of really “liking” someone online even tho we never met. A few weeks later, I was immersed in rhizo14 and LOVING people. Caring about them and totally emotionally invested in our relationship to the point of addiction (not sure that’s healthy hehe). I do think some online relationships start out unequal (even patronizing) – like with less famous people connecting with famous ppl. The thing w twitter is they can evolve into more equal ones, and then sometimes u make urself more vulnerable and it becomes something else. Some people are more explicit and open about their emotions online and this for me helps build relationships. I remember the moment I started considering Keith Hamon my friend, and you, Alan. Before it, you were just folks I knew online (part of a network). You’re right about emotional investment, though I learned recently not to get upset when someone doesn’t respond to email. I just pound on them on Twitter to let them know they’ve ignored my email 🙂 Yeah, I guess it means I think or know I am important enough to that person that they cannot possibly be ignoring me intentionally. Lol
Re: selfishness, hmmm there is nothing wrong with making some connections without intent to dig deeper emotionally, right? And i think doing stuff to “get” followers are transparent and don’t last long. It’s a literacy all its own, this deciding whom to connect with and how. But the ‘why’ is the important question, as unit 1 of connected courses will discuss 🙂