Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Net-a-holicism

I am a self-confessed net-a-holic now but I wasn’t so once upon a time. So much so that I would only have a very selective list of individuals on my list, the ones I interacted with personally everyday. There would be the plain ‘wassup’ messages and the same old ‘nm’ replies. If you meet someone everyday and talk to them at least thrice over the phone when you are not with them, there’s barely stuff left to discuss online.

I moved to India. I was all alone at least during the first few months. Having nothing better to do, I started experimenting by talking to people who I didn’t know personally. Not the ones you meet in chat rooms but friends of friends of friends or some long lost person whose name I heard in school. We started of as strangers but soon, I would know them so well that they would get a new status in my social hierarchy - that of net pals.

It was not that the bond lasted forever, but yes there were a few precious ones who I held on to and am still friends with even now. It was good to have someone I could talk to, someone who didn’t share anything in common with you except the willingness to make a friend, someone who listened to you without any preconceived notions, some one who both empathized with you and advised you when needed. Discretion was needed but don’t we need it in real life too?!

In the meanwhile, my dad had got me a digital camera then and I soon caught the photography bug. The likes of Flickr, Picassa, Snapfish allowed me to put up my pictures on the web. These photo-sharing tools helped me exhibit work among many others like me and keep improving on it based on their suggestions. (Pity, I am not clicking that many pictures these days. Exams make you very dull.)

The whole Orkut phenomenon happened and there your circle went public. It was a place where everyone could know everyone else. Scrapping became a rage and then an addiction and then just faded away. But it was a revolutionary platform in contrast to Hi5 and Zorpia, taking social networking to the next level. I could know people and yet maintain distance when needed. I would find old friends, people who I had shared a conversation with at parties, my teachers; everyone seemed to be Orkutting. And the good news was Orkut (and Facebook) were only getting safer and better with time.

If that wasn’t enough, I thought I needed a blog – my own space. It gave me the freedom of expression and kept the writer in me alive. Over the past 2 years, I have come to realize that no other online tool tells me more about a person than his or her blog!

This seems to be the beginning of the journey. And with time, I know I will find more reasons to be online.

4 comments:

astrodominie said...

I love it when people I know have blogs. They reveal a completely different side.

And over the past year or so, the Internet has grown to become my one true love. Orkut was a crazy addiction which is now a thing of the past, Facebook having kicked it out on its bum. And yeah, netaholacism - nice word! - isn't going to leave us be.

Silent Screamer said...

I totally agree with miss.astrodominie.I can't imagine my world without the net!!Orkut..Facebook..an so many more total time pass social networking sites.Very well expressed Mr.Dawda.

P.S.You still havent mentioned anything about your net friends in particular.Do that next time:P

The Illuminator said...

@Astrodomine
I am yet to catch the facebook fever. I have intentionally kept it at bay because once I am on it, I tend to get completely hooked. Thank god orkut has begun to get boring.

@SS
No. I rather write a testimonial. ;)

Pallavi said...

Hmmm..Every youngster with an access to the internet will vouch for "Net-a-holicism".Well written.