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In which I ponder the nature of livejournal, and online personas in general. [Sep. 15th, 2003|12:32 pm]
Miss Von Trapp
[Mood |contemplativecontemplative]
[Music |Suede : The Next Life]

At what point does my livejournal (addictive as it is) cease to be my online diary and, instead, become some ravenous monster of 'vanity publishing'?

Indeed, writing this now I am painfully aware that there will be an audience for my diary entry - which entirely negates its usefulness as a diary - originally meant to be a private place in which you wrote your thoughts upon the day that had passed. It is a certainty, therefore, that this will be read...what matters to me at this moment, as author of my own 'online representation' of my life, is HOW MUCH of my real life goes into this - what aspects of my life do I wish my audience to discover today?

I may choose to talk about, or (as I do) keep quiet about the hidden details of my life such as relationships (or lack of) or family issues...I may withhold personal information like my real name or my exact location in the UK for example...things which are necessary (considering I have an audience) to keep private to myself...and are only shared between select friends, perhaps in a friends-only post...but more likely by email/messenger only.

Is this, then, a true representation of myself? Aspects of myself maybe...well, yes! But it is not the whole picture - and that is where 'online persona' rears its ugly head...

I could be anything I choose!! By careful manipulation of words, and removal of mundanities, I could become a famous actor (I sooo wish!), local celebrity, sexy model (with EXTREME photoshop abuse anyway), an incredibly gifted artist...why should you ever see the pics I screw up and hurl at the bin in a hissy fit?! I could re-invent/re-word myself to be anything/anybody that tickles my fancy at any given moment in time...

But I'm honest to a fault. Transparently so. So I don't do that. (Well...only with photos...)

I, personally, write about what makes me excited...what captures my limited imagination (it's why you think I'm always so happy and bouncy)...and what I consider to be highlights of my day that I wish to remember for myself later on in life...or next week...

That doesn't stop ME being horrendously gullible and believing anyone else's possible 'Hollywood Lifestyle' as penned anywhere else on the net though. Hopefully it's not going to be the case...but there's always the possibility of fiction as the media keeps reminding us..."He was pretending to be a 15 yr old girl" etc etc...

So what am I trying to say?

Don't believe EVERYTHING you read? No, I wouldn't be such a miserable skeptic as to try to follow that maxim...especially with my random scribblings here...but do try more to read between the lines - to look for the bigger picture...

...and remember (she said, feeling a little like Springer)...everyone here is human - even if some of us do our damndest to appear otherwise...


I found this quote whilst reading through a REALLY ANCIENT (printed in 1916) pocketbook of quotes by Robert Louis Stevenson and its rather appropriate (I SO identify lol)... :

(I pilfered the book in question from my father a long long time ago...I think it belonged to Granny...so apologies Dad!!)

"All natural talk is a festival of ostentation; and by the laws of the game each accepts and fans the vanity of the other. It is from that reason that we venture to lay ourselves so open, that we dare to be so warmly eloquent, and that we swell in each other's eyes to such a vast proportion. For talkers, once launched, begin to overflow the limits of their secret pretensions, and give themselves out for heroes, brave, pious, musical, and wise, that in their most shining moments they aspire to be.
So they weave for themselves with words and for a while inhabit a palace of delights, temple at once and theatre, where they fill the round of the world's dignities, and feast with the gods, exulting in Kudos. And when the talk is over, each goes his way, still flushed with vanity and admiration, still trailing clouds of glory; each declines from the height of his ideal orgie, not in a moment, but by slow declension."
- Robert Louis Stevenson
"Memories and Portraits"
(extract from The Pocket R.L.S, Chatto & Windus, pg 140, 1916)

Which lj user are you?
quiz made by bijouriel

/rant off

[User Picture]From: vimster
2003-09-15 06:22 am (UTC)
Anything you write ever is a reflection of you, and I think most people will consider how people will receive it, even if it's just a thought towards grammar.

When it comes to LJ, I suppose we all have different motives. There are people out there who just want to talk about music, or others who have very active social lives and just document those. Why they feel the need to do it, that's hard to say: to show off? because it might strike a chord with the like-minded?

As for Robert Louis Stevenson's quote, it makes me think about radio phone-ins, why do people feel the need to ring up and give out their opinion? When you stop to think about it, it's hard to say, but it's certainly not just a comment, it's literally expressing yourself, for what end, I don't know.

For me, I don't talk about everything I do ever, as it would bore people daft, if nothing else. I've met some superb people via comments, but I don't write in order to get tons of commentry, well sometimes ;).

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[User Picture]From: missvontrapp
2003-09-15 06:31 am (UTC)
Yes, LJ is sort of a social commentary on my life lol

I've always kept a diary (albeit far more enthusiastically during January)...and since I'm never off the net it makes more sense to do it here...I type faster than I write these days anyway...

And I get immense pleasure in re-reading my own writing style...I've improved so much since A-level hehe. I'm really rather proud of this one tho...

Oh, radio phone-ins...particularly local...always funny...and the perfect opportunity for winning lie-anecdotes/windups...done a few myself lol!
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[User Picture]From: missvontrapp
2003-09-15 07:02 am (UTC)
You must understand tho...

None of this is about particular ppl...it's simply about the possibilities of creating your own fake persona online...sorta like going to uni in a diff city from your friends and family and reinventing yourself in the first week...

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[User Picture]From: wyldkyss
2003-09-15 06:53 am (UTC)
I got the same result, but I'm not sure how.
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