Perception Series: “IRL vs RL” What’s Your Perception?

 Perception, it seems very easy to understand. I perceive it as truth therefore? It is truth. I read it online, I read it in a paper, I saw it on YouTube, I saw the Tweet, I saw the FaceBook post and so it must be truth. I’ve been reading about a perceptual phenomenon. A lot of it is spurred by the increase in live streaming. It’s about the perception of “IRL” (in real life) vs day to day life, or ‘real life’. Online goings on are not like Vegas, they don’t stay in Vegas. If it’s online it must be the reality of the person’s life because ‘everyone’ saw it happen. You see porn revenge, it means that ‘nice girl’ you know must be a slut because you saw her have sex or being sexual when she believed it wouldn’t be seen by anyone else. You see snuff porn or murder porn and wait..hold up..that’s make believe, it’s NOT real, nope, no way.

 Because you perceive it as ‘not real’? You watch it over and over again. Because the other is ‘what you always suspected about the girl you were watching’ is the ‘real truth’ you also watch it over and over. Then when you see them in person you hold it up and heckle them therefore shaming them for what is a crime called porn revenge. I could speak to this idea of when we ‘virginize’ those women (and men) who we hold up as an ideal but I won’t.

 See the perception here is that online isn’t ‘real life’ except when it suits the viewers’ purpose. They want to watch a crime in action and so they tell themselves it’s not real so they won’t feel so bad for having watched it, therefore participating in the crime.

 So really what am I trying to say here, right?

 It’s all about the perception of the viewer. Their perception skewed by their personal beliefs. It also enters into the realm of what constitutes ‘cheating’ in this day and age. With so many taking a stand about not being ‘owned’ by another person it does beg to be discussed. At least a bit. Way back in the day, okay I’m a bit older here so I can use this term. So I’m talking about the 90’s and 2000-? Present day? Well, really it’s more like 2000-2010.

 The whole term IRL meant just that, in real life. Everyone had friends online who they’d never met in person, had relationships with, some quite serious and some even had mutual masturbatory relationships. Yet the partners to those involved didn’t see this as ‘real’. “It’s just talk” after all. What’s known today though is a relationship IS a relationship. Online or in person the relationship is as real as any other relationship.

 However, stepping into the fray, therefore sealing this fantastical idea of online relationships as not real, came the mental health professionals. They’d seen an influx of therapy patients who had been in online relationships and all the stuff which comes with them was talked about. However those patients were labeled as ..well..delusional. They were all upset about something…not real. Because online life isn’t real after all.

 To add insult to injury more and more moments are being shared with the world. People, men and women, get online to live stream their thoughts, ideas, opinions and more. They cry, eat, drink, dance and are being as real as possible. Some live stream when they meet up with another person they’d met online or a fellow live streamer.

 The world’s view, or it’s perception is changing. People are becoming more ‘real’ and are determined to show the world how real they are. Men cry and talk about their marriages, parenting, cheating and are..well..being real. They support each other emotionally and provide a support for one another which was unheard of before.

 Women, well they’ve always sought out each other to support one another, most of the time in a positive way. Yet, even here women are treated differently and seen as ‘needing attention’. They are the targets of people determined to shame women for having the gall to get online and talk about the harsher realities of life or what they’ve overcome.

 In the end our reality is changing and along with it? Our perception is changing in a way we finally began to question if what we see online is truth or not. My personal thought had always been if I didn’t know them in person I didn’t really know them and they didn’t really know me. People can put forth a very different personality online live streaming and until you meet them in person? You really don’t know them. Too many would argue how this isn’t true. Yet my last response to this is a reminder.

 Live streamers are a majority of introverts who excel online via live streaming. They create communities of friends they’d never have met otherwise. They are what is normally called the ‘loners’. Day to day they are loners who don’t excel in the ‘normal’ social arenas.

 Our society has become a mixture of online and day to day life. We have dear friends, long time friend online and offline. Some we keep in touch with via FaceBook or email.

 So when it’s said and done our perceptions are a changing thing. They’re pretty fluid anymore. So who’s to say if you really know someone or not? Strip away all the pretty, lovely trappings, pictures of smiling times and who’s really underneath?

 Well, isn’t this really the question after all? Is your perception on the mark or not?


One thought on “Perception Series: “IRL vs RL” What’s Your Perception?

  1. This is really fantastic. I really am amazed at your keen insights on this. Indeed, from someone who does find it to be easier to “spill my guts” on my blog than to people in “real” life, your post is profound to me. I think online is a trap of sorts of people are not 1,000% authentic and honest. Online does not afford us the opportunities regular life affords us: to be angry, to be bitchy, to be wanting and just be our natural selves in natures truest habitat. To be sure, the online world is a carnival mirror, at best showing how great we can be, at worst, hiding out truer natures from ourselves and our audience. However, I do believe if we are completely honest, completely willing to be truly our genuine selves, online life can show us how to live better and more real lives offline. Fabulous contribution today!

    Liked by 1 person

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