IM Cultural Divide

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IM Cultural Divide

To most of my friends, i appear always-on. If i’m not on the computer, my IMs usually go to my Sidekick. I have a round-the-clock presence on AIM, even if frequently idle. I share this round-the-clockness with some of my buddies – people who always appear to be on, although sometimes idle. There are other buddies who pop up whenever they’re on their computer (often 9-5). Then, there are those who pop up very occasionally.

The thing about members of this latter category is that they *always* want to talk when they come online. This makes sense – they’re appearing online only to talk, not to share presence. They are seeing IM as a communication tool first and foremost.

Now, let’s go back to the people who come online just to talk. The problem with this group is that they’re unintentionally exerting power. They are declaring their free time by logging on and they’re assuming that i am signaling the same thing. But i’m not. This is simply cultural cluelessness. But when they then get upset with me, that’s the exertion of power. And this is what has prompted me to change IM accounts or block people in the past. Now, i’m just rude.

cultural divide in IM: presence vs. communication

I used to be an always online guy, but had to give it up, when I just couldn’t get any work done. runs on the Genesis Framework

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