A few nights ago someone suggested that Second Life Profiles were akin to Tinder profiles. Actually, suggested isn’t really the correct word here because this person didn’t really suggest at all, they delivered more of an unyielding statement.
I didn’t save the conversation, I was too tired and in the end it all sort of fizzled out with no real conclusion following a bit of a half hearted back and forth in entirely the wrong setting. People were doing that polite thing they do, trying to deflect the awkwardness and change the subject with humour. I noticed it however it was entirely too late, I was all in. In truth I’m a little frustrated at myself for reacting, especially in a place where I care about what the folk think (which is in itself an unusual state of affairs). I’m usually more controlled. Occasionally however I’ll experience a little flare of annoyance which will overcome my better judgement and propel me head long into a discussion (okay, okay an argument). This tends to happen when someone says something that I feel affects me personally or when someone lumps me in with the general populous, or when a person presumes to tell me about me (and gets it wholly wrong in the process) or when folk refuse to acknowledge that their viewpoint, although completely valid, is possibly not the only viewpoint in the entire metaverse. And sometimes, like the night in question, when they pull the rabbit out of the hat and manage tick off them all I can’t help but respond.
So what was it which ignited this little outpouring? Hmm, well, it was, of all things, Tinder. You know, the dating app? Of course you do. Tinder…tinder also means something else doesn’t it? The noun predates that horrible little application and the irony of it’s definition isn’t lost on me.
I guess you want to know what was actually said about Tinder though? I mean, I don’t love the thing however I’m not so metal that just the mere mention of the app will illicit such a response. So let me fill you in; it was asserted that everyone’s profile on SL (and therefore my profile) was akin to a Tinder profile. That our words and pictures were little more than advertisements, that by creating a profile, by filling in our little boxes we were effectively marketing ourselves to all and sundry. Putting ourselves out there, as people do on Tinder, creating a dating profile as it were. Tinder… where people are trying desperately to sell themselves in the hope of snaring a …a what exactly? A partner? A quick shag ? Something involving someone else certainly.
Now I get that point of view, really I do. In fact I largely agree with it. A lot of SL profiles are exactly that after all. A way of reaching out, of connecting. However that isn’t the case for everyone and it certainly isn’t the case for me. I don’t want randoms perusing my profile, I certainly don’t want them to contact me. I can’t be bothered with it. I mostly can’t be bothered with anything. When I do jot stuff down in my profile I’m not fishing for …someone. The things I write tend to be little musing I make up, or things I’ve seen that I felt I wanted to keep around a bit … or sometimes, just sometimes a personal message to a dear friend someone I’ve likely known years and years and years, someone important to me. Occasionally it’s a heart felt message to someone who has affected me in some way. The key thing is, I never do it to sell myself to people. That’s the last thing I’d want to do. It’s never marketing, never advertising (as was suggested). I don’t even think I’m worth buying truth be told so the thought would never enter my head.
I was trying to explain this all but … it’s difficult to discuss something with someone who, for whatever reason isn’t willing to absorb any other viewpoint bar their own. To realise that there is never a one size fits all…
I ended up calling the person a despotic. A bit harsh maybe. Childish even. I do like to deride those who have to resort to insults and yet ..sometimes I still revert to name calling myself. I like to think I’m a little more enlightened, a little better these days but I guess old habits die hard.
The person took it well, messaging me later to say ‘Here’s why I’m not despotic:CAUSE I SAY SO!’
I don’t think they really give a shit. I dunno why I do.