I've always been pretty interested in the fact that people feel the need to tell people about events in their real lives/their real emotions/their real thoughts and feelings about things on the internet, particularly on message boards full of strangers... (an urge I usually resist, except for right now of course, or when I'm hating on hollywood_freak)
So I was drawn to this passage in an article on the Guardian about the new Adam Curtis series:
'He quotes Carmen Hermosillo, a West Coast geek and early adopter of online chatrooms who in 1994 argued that, although the internet is a wonderful thing, your emotions become commodified. 'It is fashionable to suggest that cyberspace is some island of the blessed where people are free to indulge and express their individuality,' she wrote. 'This is not true. I have seen many people spill out their emotions – their guts – online and I did so myself until I began to see that I had commodified myself.' Says Curtis, 'On Facebook and Twitter, you are performing to attract people – you are dancing emotionally, on a platform created by a large corporation. People's feelings bounce back and forth – happy Stakhanovites, ignoring and denying the system of power. It's like Stalin's socialist realism. Both Twitter and socialist realism are innocent expressions of the ideology of the time, which don't pull back and show the wider thing they are part of. We look back on socialist realism not as innocent but as a dramatic expression of power; it expresses the superiority of the state, which was the guiding belief at the time. I think sometime in the future people will look back at the millions and millions of descriptions of personal feelings on the internet and see them in similar ways. This is the driving belief of our time: that 'me' and what I feel minute by minute is the natural centre of the world. Far from revealing that this is an ideology – and that there are other ways of looking at human society – what Twitter and Facebook do is reinforce the feeling that this is the natural way to be.'
So... what do you people think about this? Why do YOU feel the need to confess details about your life to strangers on the internet? Do you dislike users who don't do this, and if so why?