Normally, when I’m on the Internet, I am in the realm of America Online. I first started posting on message boards at AOL and then discovered all the other forums to express my opinions at out on the Web.
At the MLM Discussion Board on AOL, we have a resident critic of MLM named Sitemistic. He’s a smart intelligent guy who just happens to hate the concept of Multi-level Marketing. He’s often criticized not for his MLM stance, but for his seeming lack of acknowledgement that there are real people on the other side of his monitor. He refers to the other posters as mere “pixels on the screen”. I guess this is his way of not being affected personally by whatever is said about him or whatever he may say about someone else. Although he rarely makes personal attacks. He’s more than likely attacking a newly “sold” person’s particular company.
I’m also a frequent visitor to the AOL chat room, Entrepreneur under the News,Sports, and Finance category. In the “E” room, I have come to know many of the regulars and even grieved over the passing of one the regulars, PARfour72 in April.
PAR and I had emailed a few times and he was great guy, from what I knew of him. Always quick with a joke or a kind word to a budding business person. I included a short tribute to Parfour72 in my AOL profile.
The chats aren’t always about business there, and there are some bitter rivalries in the room, and an ample amount of sex talk and innuendo as well( Most chat rooms thrive on this), but occasionally a serious business discussion will erupt, and most regulars are quick to answer a new person’s question or offer advice.
I even met my current best friend and business partner of late, in the room. The idea of actually meeting someone from online was strange for the both of us, but it worked out well. Not only did I find a new friend, and decided to work with her and her husband, she initially joined with me in my Quixtar business on the shear merits of our online conversations.
Some would say that people on the Internet are just mere pixels, but I guess there are some REAL people out there too, as I am definitely not remodeling a house with a pixel.
I’m a firm believer that the Internet, is just a collection of communities. You move into a community, you make friends, you conduct business, you share heartache, laughter (or an LOL!)and you learn something about another human. You just do it via a keyboard and an instant messaging program or email service rather than talking over the fence with your neighbor or having lunch with a co-worker.
Blogging is also like a community. By reading the day-to-day exploits of fellow bloggers, you come to learn who they are, what affects them on a personal level. Some you like; some you don’t.
Has anyone else met anyone in person from their message boards or chat room talks? Do any of you go to any chat rooms on a regular basis. If so, which ones? Maybe I could stop by and talk to you when you are there.