INTERWEBZ FRIENDS: DEBUNKING THE STIGMA

by Steve Clem on May 23, 2010

“So how do you know so and so?”

What a friggin’ tough question that is when you are a bad liar.

“Through a social group.”

“We have common friends.”

“We met at a work thing.”

Lies. Lies. Lies.

Truth be told, people, I met them on the interwebz. Get over it.

I’ve met girlfriends on the interwebz. I’ve met probably near hundreds of Hawkeye fan friends through the interwebz. I’ve even been in the wedding of someone I met off the interwebz.

So sue me.

Despite what you read (on the interwebz of all places) and hear and see, the interwebz is not all creeps and pedophiles and con artists.

Despite what you hear:

  • Craigslist is not completely made up of ax murderers.
  • Match.com is not entirely full of registered sex offenders.
  • Facebook.com is not 99 percent men pretending to be women.

The stigma surrounding the interwebz is really a tired cliche at this point. After all, you’re reading this blog because somehow you are connected to me via the interwebz.

Yes, dear reader, there are people who I originally met on the interwebz who I would go to hell and back for. And 99.9 percent of them I’ve met in real life, long after first meeting them on the interwebz, and they have enriched my life immensely.

Think about it…we use the interwebz to be more efficient in every other facet of life – paying bills, keeping track of our finances, ordering groceries, planning vacations – why wouldn’t it make sense for us to use it to more efficiently make new friends with whom we have much in common?

Who are these people, these strangers from the interwebz?

There’s my bestest interwebz friend ever. She knows more about me probably than my ex-wife…and is always entrusted with said privileged information. Even if she spells things in that funny Canadian/Queen’s English way.

There’s my former girlfriend, who has remained a great friend throughout the last 3 years.

There’s my buddy from Des Moines, who I usually try and tailgate at least once or twice at Hawkeye games each year. Typically we’ll talk on the phone at least once a week to catch up on how things are going.

There’s my many high school and college classmates, who, while I may have known them in the past, I was hardly friends with them. But now, through the powerful magic of the interwebz, I’m fortunate to have them all as people who I can vent to, help out with their problems, or just make each other laugh for a little while.

So the next time you meet someone new at a party, or the grocery store, or a bar, or at the park while walking your dog…

Remember that they could be a pedophile. Or a scam artist. Or a convicted sex offender.

And in the meantime, please stop making me feel weird for having interwebz frenz. lol. omg. ttyl.

* * * *

Steve Clem originally published this piece on the blog A Prisoner in the Tundra.

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