inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #26 of 57: beneath the blue suburban skies (aud) Sun 8 Jul 12 12:35
    
andreas, if you are still filming you should come to the east coast! there
are Well members scattered all over the country, like my husband and i for
one, outside of Philly (we met here on the Well in the 80's). members like
me have been meeting others f2f but just not normally at the big bay area
events. Dead tours and the like helped...

f2f is like a formality in some ways. i've met dozens of Wellfolk over the
years and we were like old friends already.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #27 of 57: roll in confectioner's sugar (reva) Sun 8 Jul 12 12:36
    
(Hi again, Andreas. Nice to see you actually ON the WELL, weird
circumstances aside.)
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #28 of 57: Ted Newcomb (tcn) Sun 8 Jul 12 17:20
    
Hmmm...actually I'd like to meet almost everyone face to face; it
would be like a homecoming of sorts. Now, with Google+ Hangouts, that's
starting to occur, still not in the same physical space tho. I think
the asynchronicity of the conversations is what provides the right
'distance'; moreso than the lack of being in the same physical space.

Like Andreas says above, it's reinforced by f2f.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #29 of 57: Lisa Harris (lrph) Mon 9 Jul 12 13:44
    
Once I realized that most thrashes that made me uncomfortable were par
for the course, I settled in.  Although I distinctly remember trying
to get people to a concensus, and that failing miserably and with the
thrash then turning on ME!  

MYOB, is not a bad idea, even in open forums.  Sometimes it pays to
stay out of it.  Sometimes it is fun to jump right in.  Depends upon e
thrash and the players. 

I've been aware of the bozo filter for most of my time here.  I've
only used it once or twice.  I know I've been bozoed, and I think it's
for the best.  If what I write bothers someone to the point of bozoing,
I'd much prefer they bozo me than mess with me.  
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #30 of 57: a plaid pajama ninja (cynsa) Mon 9 Jul 12 15:46
    
>it would be great if you could try to
>discribe it a little more and maybe your experiences as a musician
>performing in front of an audience

definitely I initially (and for many years, actually) 
perceived my online persona as a creation, an ongoing
performance art piece. you have to understand how completely 
brilliant and humorous and a little overwhelming the company was.
I treated every word like gold tender of admittance to some
exclusive avant garde club of humorists.  the algonquins meet
the Simpsons or something.  g weird for deeper understanding.
bring a box of condoms and a spare lemur.  

then I was granted a hostship and I had to start being a little
more accessible.  

but in between I made real life friends who would finger 
me (how's that for an intimate unix command) and send me sends
and somewhere in there I had my first cybersex online with 
(xxxxx name elided to protect the departed) who taught me
how to type one-handed, and also, I joined the motorcycle conf
(g ride) and when my scooter got stolen, flash and vision came
over with a copy of the local motorcycle rag and helped me pick
out my first motorcycle, and dlee came over with his truck and
drove me to Stockton to pick it up.  so, I guess what I'm saying
is, when my carbs got fouled and I would login and see vision 
listed I would get this warm, fuzzy feeling knowing help was 
right here!

send vision 
halp!  I keep getting rust in my pilot jet! 

and sure, he would mock me but he'd also tell me how to patch in 
a filter. logging in and doing u and seeing who is around to 
chat with, while meantime going to see what's  up around the WELL
and around the world...all in one window.

they say the book versions are always better than the movies 
because our imagination does the work. I guess that's why the WELL
works for me.  I don't really need pictures of people's faces.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #31 of 57: Julie Sherman (julieswn) Mon 9 Jul 12 18:26
    
Andreas, have you explored any other online communitees here or in
Germany? If so, how do they compare?
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #32 of 57: those Andropovian bongs (rik) Mon 9 Jul 12 18:40
    
Hi Andreas.  I loved the Well from the time I signed on in 1990, and never 
really experienced any flaming that actually bothered me, although my 
sense of humor and lack of political correctness did set a few sets of 
teeth on edge.  But I found the bozofilter an excellent tool for my 
purposes.  It's not that I didn't want to see what certain other people 
wrote, but there were people who, how shall I say it, didn't bring out the 
best in me.  So putting them in the filter meant that I had to take an 
extra step to read them, which was a breathing space that made me much 
less apt to spend 20 minutes, like Scott, furiously typing ripostes that 
embarassed me when I read them the next day.

I still keep a few people in there for that very purpose.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #33 of 57: Susan Sarandon, tractors, etc. (rocket) Tue 10 Jul 12 07:29
    
The bozofilter is a blood pressure moderator. There are a few people who 
almost invariably make me smack my head in frustration -- and a few is not 
too bad out of many hundreds, if you think about it -- so why read them at 
all?
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #34 of 57: David Gans (tnf) Tue 10 Jul 12 09:01
    
I can't tell you how much I love <cynsa>'s post <30>.
Writing was a performing art in many WELL venues.  The <mind.> conference and
<weird.> in particular were amazing venue for wit and play, while in other
conferences we would have serious conversations about technology, politics,
media, books, movies, etc.

I think one of the WELL's greatest attractions is that it is a forum for a
great cariety of discussions rather than a specialized or purpose-driven
forum.  In a given discussion we may have experts from fields that are
directly involved with an issue and perspectives from other disciplines, plus
input fmor people who are wise and accomplished in other areas.

I sometimes describe the WELL as a collective blog: people bring news stories
here for everyone to read and comment on, and we all benefit from the wisdom
of scholars, professionals, intellectuals, and wiseasses of all stripes.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #35 of 57: a plaid pajama ninja (cynsa) Tue 10 Jul 12 18:00
    
yeah!  I think that's why I never used my bozofilter very much: even
the worst jackass offender is a little like looking at a trainwreck. 
you kinda want to see the damage up close.  although if there's a 
particular someone who pushes your buttons and you can't help 
responding to and you know you'll end up engaging in a fruitless 
debate, I suppose it's helpful...but I found my experience in the 
Well trenches (oh God, in Unclear, e.g.) really toughened me up 
for the greater Internet.  I mean after you've dragged axon down 
into the dirt with your teeth fastened in his jugular and realized, 
even then, he wasn't going to 'fess up?  Engaging in wank with some 
no-name on a mailing list or a livejournal anonmeme or 
HuffingtonPost.com is pretty effing pointless.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #36 of 57: Gail Williams (gail) Tue 10 Jul 12 20:06
    
It's not (mostly) the tools, it's the talent.  Cynsa, you've certainly
got it.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #37 of 57: Gail Williams (gail) Tue 10 Jul 12 20:08
    
Seriously, the success of this place is about the people here, and how
expressive, interesting and involved everybody is.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #38 of 57: a plaid pajama ninja (cynsa) Tue 10 Jul 12 22:30
    
Gail! oh, heart and soul of this place. who also happened to rescue me
from my precariously high Well bill in my early days by encouraging me
to co-found the GenX conference. Otherwise I wouldn't have been able to
afford sticking around.  Not to mention it was Gail who hired me on at
the Well evenually and started me on my career in tech. So much love,
babe.

The Well quite literally changed my life. For the better, if that 
wasn't clear. ~
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #39 of 57: David Gans (tnf) Wed 11 Jul 12 10:04
    
What did you do before you worked at the WELL, Cynsa?
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #40 of 57: a plaid pajama ninja (cynsa) Wed 11 Jul 12 17:47
    
I was teaching math and English for the Princeton Review, but the available
classes dried up, so I ended up working as an admin for some insurance
company (miserable) while I went back to school for my MA to become a 
fulltime teacher.  but then I got distracted (read: obsessed) by the 
WELL and someone (I think dgault?) taught me bash scripting, and 
nharkins (and someone else in systems...can't remember who) taught me 
perl, and that was pretty much all she wrote. Gail, who else was our 
sysadmin back then?  I don't think it was Pete. I'm really gonna punch 
myself in the face when you remind me...it wasn't tpesce because I think 
he came onboard a little later and rescued us when neil left.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #41 of 57: Lena M. Diethelm (lendie) Wed 11 Jul 12 18:12
    

yibing?
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #42 of 57: David Gans (tnf) Wed 11 Jul 12 18:30
    

Wow, I didn't realize your entire career emerged from your weird life here.
Everybody wins!
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #43 of 57: Andreas Schneider (andreasschn) Thu 12 Jul 12 02:18
    
the idea/concept of "writing as a performing art" seems one way to
discribe an relation between an audience and a user. Would be great if
there is some thoughts on that and how it evolved over the course of
years?
 
And I just imagined that it might even happen, that one doesn´t feel
comfortable any longer with the online persona that was created? (...
if you consider that an online persona is something created between an
audience an individual)

And, who/what is involved in creating an/the online persona? 
I mean in how far is it created by an individual, by the "software
defined place" (=surroundings), by it´s audience?
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #44 of 57: David Gans (tnf) Thu 12 Jul 12 10:58
    

"Writing as a performing art" had its upside and its downside.  In the early
days of the <mind.> conference - I'm thinking in particular of a topic called
"Laundromania" that I believe was started by <bulbhead> - we were all
performing for each other.  It was like improv theater - lots of people
contributing, building on previous posts.  You'd go through the conference,
laugh your ass off at what you read, add a post here and there, and then hit
"see new" and go through a whole new batch of hilarious posts.

There were others who came here with an agenda.  The rock dust guy comes to
mind.  The slution to all the world's problems, exounded on at great length
and in many inappropriate forums.  We couldn't get the guy to shut up, and
the bozo filter had not yet been invented.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #45 of 57: With catlike tread (sumac) Thu 12 Jul 12 23:03
    
I'm still worried about (bathleen).
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #46 of 57: a plaid pajama ninja (cynsa) Thu 12 Jul 12 23:20
    
I think for some (I'm thinking in particular of one friend of mine that I
sorely miss) his persona became a constraint he couldn't break out of very
easily to make real human contact.  Almost like breaking character for
someone like Stephen Colbert.  He was always on stage. heh.
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #47 of 57: Ted Newcomb (tcn) Fri 13 Jul 12 06:17
    
All interesting. We wear many hats and personas. I'd never thought
about how, in a community like this, that might be re-inforcing. Great
questions in <43> Andreas. 

There may be another dynamic at work here as WELL. For those folk
who've been here almost since Day One, they have certain established
'online presences' that have been established over the years. But as
new folk join and meet them for the first time, there are opportunities
to reinvent themselves. 
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #48 of 57: Julie Sherman (julieswn) Fri 13 Jul 12 06:39
    
I joined the WELL pretty late, in 2004. I had heard about it for years
but somehow thought that it was a closed community and that you could
not join it in present time. Then Salon had their "try the well for 2
cents for a month" deal and I got excited and joined.  And stayed. 

For me the WELL definitley felt like a party I was joining late. But
at the same time I felt very comfortable here. I had been on BBSes in
the 90s, so was used to the linear format. I had learned enough from
that experience to know to keep quiet for a while and just explore and
"listen." I have a lot of regrets for not being here in my wild 30s. I
think of all the Grateful Dead concert inside info I missed out on and
sigh. 

The psued thing was really confusing to me in the beginning. <divinea>
has a psued that mentioned Santa Cruz, where I was living at the time,
and I thought that meant she lived there too. I was so surprised to
find out that she actually lived in a different state, entirely. 
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #49 of 57: Gail Williams (gail) Sat 14 Jul 12 18:06
    
Yeah, the culture of pseuds, which means changing your name field for
a post or for all posts, is curious and can be daunting.  The username
or userID is permanent, but the name field can be adjusted.

I assume the original idea was that if you signed up as Dr. Jennifer
Smith you might wish to be Dr. Smith in some discussions and Jenny in
others, so why not let that part of the tool be configurable by the
user.  

So, there was a time of fanciful nicknames. Some of that still goes
on.  Then at some point the capture of snippets of conversation from
other posters became the thing to do.  

For example,
  
inkwell.vue.446 : Andreas Schneider and the WELL Documentary Project
permalink #50 of 57: being here in my wild 30s (gail) Sat 14 Jul 12 18:11
    
... in this post, you see I snagged a pseudonym from Julie's post #48
above.  I probably won't let it stick for future posts, since that is
more confusing here in Inkwell where the Wide Web can read, but I
could.  

My identity and the authorship of the post are still clear, though.

It can clearly be confusing, as well as funny or surreal.  

This is an example of something that arose not from rules, nor from
rules encoded intentionally into tools, but more from the human impulse
to play with everything.  I can make a nickname in this field? What
else can I do...

The creative adaptation around here is simply incredible.
  

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