Virtual Interaction

In 2005 I had a Facebook account for three days. (I tried to delete it, but was told I could not delete it, only suspend it!) I joined MySpace. Then I read an article about Second Life in The New York Times, curious, I joined Second Life. Shortly there after I started my first out of three WordPress blogs. When in Second Life, I joined with my avatar Facebook again for a brief time, but soon discontinued. (I now have two suspended Facebook accounts.) Virtual interactions allow us to establish a new way of being with a virtual representation. This representation functions as a creative outlet of sorts, allowing us to display parts of ourselves we would perhaps hesitate showing others in real life. This is a good thing, activating fantasy and playfulness. But people also get consumed by virtual interactions; be it Second Life, Facebook, MySpace or any other virtual experience. For instance, when I was in Second Life, I got into the habit of being online for hours everyday and it eventually got to the point when I asked myself why this was so. I realized I needed more of a virtual life/real life balance and I quit. There is a danger in being absorbed by the virtual world that I think many people are in denial about. More time spent online means less time spent offline. Less time offline means a loss of real life experience.

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