I started this journey because I’m interested in the idea of digital identity, of who we are when we’re online. What it means to “talk” to people on Twitter. What it means to interact digitally, and form deep connections with people we may have never met. How writing one’s life can be different from telling it in person, because of what one is allowed to say and focus on. What it means to share our thoughts and life via RSS or tweet or status update rather than email or telephone. Why some of us @reply most of the time, using the medium almost as a party line. What kind of commitments – in terms of time and repeated engagement, in terms of pressure to be funny or interesting or smart – it takes to build and maintain a “self” online, an identity that others recognize and respond to. Whether there’s a digital identity even if nobody’s reading or following.
This excerpt is from the blog of Bonnie Stewart, who, like me, is undertaking studies in a Ph.D. program. I came across her blog after following her on twitter and found that her interests in social media are a pretty good match to mine. In this post she begins delving into the idea of digital identity. I just commented on her latest post. I love the way she writes and provokes thought and will be back to her blog often – a good read!
(I originally grabbed this excerpt on January 29, 2011)