Online, Offline: Are You the Same?

Online, Offline: Are You the Same?

We’re in for a treat today: Davina is the Guest Author! Of course if you’ve spent any time here at LFI, you’ve probably already been in conversation with Davina. She usually blogs about Marketing and Communication but today she’s examining the relationship between our personalities online – and off!

Not everyone blogs. Not everyone reads blogs and even fewer still leave comments. For the commenting virgins or anyone who thinks commenting isn’t for them these are my thoughts on mixing it up online: someone shares something funny or smart, inspiring or totally idiotic and I just have to speak (type!) my peace; just like in life.

Commenting on a blog is different from communicating face to face – isn’t it? Let’s compare.


  1. You have to login or signup with a name.This is good and bad, but it lets everyone know who’s talking, I guess.
  2. Your hair always looks good.You pick your avatar, so everyone sees your favorite or most flattering picture.
  3. You could hide behind a secret identity. Depending on your interests and goals, you could have different personalities for each secret Twitter account or community profile. Keeps you from cursing the boss in public, and yet it makes the real connections a little harder to come by since you can’t always hide who you really are.
  4. You have to let others get their say. You can’t interrupt or talk over someone so that’s good. The bad part is that you can ignore what others say and just add your own thoughts.
  5. You have to think about what you want to say. That keyboard acts as a filter in the mouth/brain connection; your eyes helping you edit as you go.
  6. You can visit with everyone at the party. Ever tried that a reunion, wedding, decent sized cocktail party? Everyone migrates into little corners, hard to be part of the overall fun. In comments, everyone is invited to mix it up; you just have to take the time to read and reply.
  7. You’re smarter, cleverer, and funnier. Jokes fall flat among your friends? Somehow your community of bloggers thinks your writing is hysterical. Win. Seriously, though, I try to be the ‘best’ me I can when commenting, always give more than two pennies worth.

Are you a different person when commenting on a blog or just your best you? Does the anonymity of online conversation and the ability to “hide” behind your avatar distort or improve who you are, or are you the same online as you are offline?

photo credit: Tim Dobbelaere

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