.First off, I'm not posting this to be a stick in anyone's craw, I'm genuinely curious. I've been researching the Facebook role-playing community and message board communities for an article I'm working on, and in doing so it has just made me more and more curious about the attitudes of those who invest a lot of time in them (with or without the role playing aspect). I couldn't help but wonder what you folks might have to say on the subject.
Just a few general questions.
1. How much time a week would you say you spend on message boards?
Not sure - all told, my internet time is probably about 10 hours a week. I guess I should keep track.
2. Do you find the interactions you have with people online to be more rewarding or less rewarding than interactions you have with people in everyday life?
I find they are different. Often there is a concentration of different people online than may be available to me in real life. It is really nice sometimes to find people who are interested in discussing ideas in a way that not all of my IRL peer group do. Online is like a sped up version of real life, and people tend to be less inhibited online, so I have found it a useful place to observe interactions and learn more about people. I like getting mail and I don't get a lot in real life, so I suppose there's a little incentive to keep checking what was said. Otherwise, I prefer real life interactions.
3. Do you regularly meet people you interact with online, or do you prefer keeping interactions strictly online?
Depends on the people, but anyone I interact with regularly, I would like to meet.
4. Do you feel you behave/speak/interact with people online in the same ways you would in everyday life, or do you behave differently?
Pretty similar. I'm maybe a bit more open with my thoughts than I am with a group of people in person. I also find it less stressful to deal with conflict online than I would in person.
5. Do you find online interaction to be mostly positive or mostly negative?
Mostly positive. I think as time goes on, I'm better able to recognize what sorts of people are likely to be manipulative/volatile and just steer around them to begin with.
6. What are your favorite aspects of online interaction, and what are your least favorite aspects?
Favourite aspects - brings people together, you tend to get to deeper topics much sooner and with more people, access to a variety of perspectives and thoughts from all over the world, possibility of meeting online friends when travelling, ability to observe before jumping in, learning more about personality/people's personal experience and how they affect their interactions, exposure to new information and ideas.
Least favourite - people are not right there, sucks a lot of time away, can end up investing a lot of time in people you'll never see, people are more able to represent themselves however they want to be seen because you don't have a well-rounded picture of them, people are more likely to be the worst version of themselves because there are no social consequences, never get to meet some of the people that you spend time with.
I'd love to hear your feedback, and any other comments/thoughts you want to throw into the mix.
Cheers in advance guys!!