Who is old enough to remember when we all used nicknames online for (ha!) anonymity (that’s when I chose azahar) and seriously thought our opinions were of any importance? My first foray into the early days of internet chat forums was after purchasing a copy of the Salmon of Doubt by Douglas Adams. In the book it mentions a website started by Adams called H2G2 (Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy), but by the time I discovered it the BBC had taken it over and had been running it since Douglas’s death in 2001. These days it’s being run by some of the orginal editors who have refused to let it die.
I met a lot of lovely people on h2g2, many of whom I’ve ended up meeting in person, and some who remain good friends today. Okay, I also met a lot of asshole windbags, several weirdos and a couple of scary people who made me happy they couldn’t find my real name (this was before I was on Facebook, and Twitter was yet to be born). It’s funny to think back now about how it seemed SO IMPORTANT to express an opinion, especially when you knew it was RIGHT, and then use all kinds of effort to try and convince some idiot that they were WRONG. All being done on fucking DIAL-UP… took forever sometimes. And then half-way through an amazing reply to someone the connection would die and you’d have to start over again. I mean, I think I enjoyed those days, though they were also quite stressful at times.
Then wordpress blogs came along, and then twitter, and I eventually drifted away from h2g2. And frankly, these days on social media, I just go there to have a good time, promote my businesses, show off my cats and – now and then – I meet new friends. So it’s funny to see when Twitter Storms erupt, and everybody gets their knickers in a twist. I am so been-there-done-that. Because if there’s one thing I’ve learned these past almost 20 years of being online… there really is no point arguing with strangers.