Online interactions and the illusion of rapport | NESHEAHOLIC

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Online interactions and the illusion of rapport

I accidentally offended a blogger by asking what they did for a living. It made me think about online interactions and the illusion of rapport.

If you read a blog frequently, watch associated videos, follow on facebook/twitter, leave comments, get comments back, etc. it can give you an illusion of some type or rapport, depending on the blogger, even an illusion of friendship. I think it's natural to develop that effect after investing time into someone's blog for a period of time. For a blogger, I think this is a good thing in most cases. If a person feels connected to you and your blog you are likely doing a good job at reaching your audience.

I guess the caution or pause is this, as a blog reader you should be sensitive to your approach with a blogger as they might not feel as familiar with you as you do with them. As a blogger you should be understanding in that as a person consumes you through a blog, facebook, YouTube, etc they may begin to feel more connected to you than you are with them and ask or do something that you feel has crosses the line.

For me personally, I am greatly appreciative of all those who interact with me here on my blog or on Twitter. I've even got some pretty cool "e friends" over the years. <3 I feel that because I voluntarily but myself out here on the internet through my blog/twitter/tumblr, etc. I have to accept that people will develop opinions (right or wrong) about me, and will approach me with an air of familiarity that may or may not be there on my part.

What has been your experience, if any, with online interactions and mismatched rapport?
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6 comments

  1. I'm one of your fangirls! LOL.

    If you asked me a few years ago what I thought about making friendships from online...I'd say it was a strange and crazy idea. Now, all I have to say is that after meeting some people in person and building a real friendship with them, it's not a bad way to network and such.

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  2. Years ago I found myself in a bit of a weird situation with a guy who grew feelings for me based on a message board I moderated at the time. This guy never actually posted on the message board so I didn't know him, yet, he pretty much read anything I ever posted. Very creepy. Luckily with blogging I haven't had any similar experiences...nor do I ever have anyone digging too far into my personal life.

    But I do find myself holding back sometimes with other people regarding their blog. Sometimes they'll post something that makes me want to dig in deeper to find out what's really going on...and I have to remind myself that they are essentially strangers and if they want ME to know their business, they'd probably be a bit more clear on their blog.

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  3. This is interesting! I have yet to experience mismatch rapport, but then again I try not to get too personal online when I visit other blogs.

    When I feel curious, like SilverNeurotic mentioned, sometimes I figure if they wanted to share, they would have. Other times, I begin my question with, "If you don't mind my asking...". Then there are these rare times, when someone else will ask the question in the comments. LOL

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  4. @Thu - <3 I agree
    @SilverNeurotic & MerelyMarie - thanks for sharing!

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  5. I have found people can be very sensitive especially poets about comments, remarks etc.
    I usually feed ppl online with a long handle spoon as I do in the real world. Nice observation LaNeshe...

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