`Who are you?’ asks the log-in screen of another website.
In the wonderland of the web, I am offered a choice. I can tie my online self closer and more solidly to my offline one, use my real name, photo, marital status, career, etc. Or I can put on a veil of anonymity, a character or other version of myself, distanced from the offline me.
I think you already know which I prefer. Average Joey isn’t my real name, but it is my blogging name and I don’t feel this diminishes my capacity to be true to myself.
We all have different personas we express in different parts of our lives, sometimes they overlap, but sibling, boss, friend, lover, they are all different and a version of me. Joey @startmyquest feels as real as any offline face I present to the world. Each day to the next, the world expects me to wear the assumptions of race, gender, age and history. I cannot shake them from my face and name.
So here on the web, I cherish my identity because it offers me a chance to define myself in other ways. When all those other faces can be hidden, then I feel like the characters across this digital wonderland can ask me with genuine wonder, who are you?
So, do you have an online persona that’s different to your offline life, or do you throw it all together and just put it out there as simply you?