I meet a lot of people online, mostly via twitter. I thoroughly enjoy it as a medium and I’ve met some of my best friends online. It’s a fun and easy way to discover common interests or discuss contentious issues.
I recently took a brief break from twitter and for the most part was heartened by the efforts these people made to check in on me and ensure I was ok.
I’ve long been mindful that when pursuing online interactions, we naturally fill in the blanks in the parts of the character we can’t see. 140 characters can’t even begin to reveal a 3-dimensional personality.
What I’ve only recently begun to pay attention to is that this is often equally likely in the real world. Regular people that you’ll meet up with for a coffee or a drink are so often hiding a larger and uglier part of themselves. We tend to take for granted that there exists a warmth in people that we show to them.
Sadly this is often not the case. People sometimes will argue purely for the rush of an argument. Others may put you down without even realising they’re doing it. More often than not I don’t know the reason behind this kind of behaviour and to be perfectly honest, I don’t care. It is simply unacceptable.
We must give our time only to those who value us as we are today. I find it preferable to be alone than to be lonely in company.
I’ve long stated that the only requirement to become a part of my world is that you never ever lie to me. I’ve amended this to include respect for me, my time and my company.
This is not negotiable, these are my criteria, period.