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FRIENDSHIPS ON THE INTERNET-How Do You Treat The People You'll Never Meet?

Updated on January 1, 2010

 How do we treat the internet friends we make who are so far away that we will never meet? Do they qualify for the same treatment and consideration as our "real" friends? This last question brings me to the heart of this article......

I Am A Real Person!  I Am Not Just A Voice! I Am More Than Words On A Screen!   Whether it be friends we made on a social site or a dating site we all have friends we communicate with either by phone, email, or instant messaging. These are people, and I do stress people, who we will most likely never see face to face. Nontheless they still deserve the same courtesy as any one else. They have feelings! They are real! I AM REAL! So why is it so hard for some to remember this? Do we think since we can't see their face or maybe will never hear their voice we don't have to be accountable for how we treat them?  Has the Wonderful, Wicked, World Wide Web turned us into heartless, inconsiderate, selfish, shallow, self centered jack a**es who only care about me, me, me?   I don't know about you but I have always tried to treat all people as I would have them treat me. Sound familiar, wait, could it be the long forgotten...... "Golden Rule"?  Believe it or not it's still a very popular thing to be kind and considerate to others. Yeah, I can hear it now, you're probably thinking right now, so what, what's the big deal? The big deal is our society has become so lax in common courtesy towards others face to face on a daily basis that now it seems the internet has given us a reason to be even less kind to those we meet there. The general attitude that I have had the misfortune to experience a time or two has been...."Who cares, it's not like I'll actually ever see that person.) Doesn't it occur to anybody how hurtful and hateful that can be? If it hasn't let me remind you, It does hurt to be treated like a nobody, treated and made to feel like you're just a voice, or just an accumulation of words on a screen.  Everybody  IS a SOMEBODY, a real live somebody with a real heart, a soul, feelings that can be hurt, a spirit that can be broken with meaness and a life that can be affected by YOUR actions. That internet person is supposed to be your friend. Treat them the way you would like to be treated..... and that includes if you decide to end the friendship. Give them the courtesy of telling them. Don't leave them hanging. Send an email and if possible give them a call, tell them why. Be kind. It's always hard to end any relationship but doing it right makes all the difference, even to an internet friend. 


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