October 2017
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me on LJ vs me on FB: beginning work to correct perceptions of me by being more open on FB


icon: "revolutionary (a gif flipping through four of my nude self-portraits in dancy poses lit by natural light, showing my soft rounded body)"

I had a conversation with Cass the other day about the way people perceive me through facebook. She told me that I come across as very judgemental and hasty to dismiss people as unworthy; that she in the past and others who she has talked to have this perception. At first I found this really baffling, because I am used to people who know me through the internet thinking of me as really accepting and emotionally warm, and anyone who has known me for a while knows that I always want to work shit out rather than throw people away. But it has been a long time since I took a 'fresh read' of people's opinions of me and even so, the last time I did I think people only responded if they had something nice to say (which wasn't my goal, but was nice to read). So maybe people's perceptions of me have changed in general and I just don't know it.

Anyway, there is a huge difference in my LJ presence versus my FB presence. Livejournal gets the best of me. Things I am sure I want to read again, I put on my LJ. Random comments go on twitter which cross-posts to facebook; those posts are automatically less nuanced just because they're 140 characters or less most of the time. I don't share my more warm-fuzzy or introspective stuff on FB because nobody responds so I expect that that means nobody is reading them. My tweet-sized comments usually get about a dozen likes/reactions, whereas my cross-posted LJ entries are lucky to get 3 likes/reactions.

But this means that people are never reading about how I am working out difficult friendships or how I am dealing with personal struggles, so they really don't get a good feel for who I am. And I don't want people to get the wrong impression of me, so I have decided to try and be more open on facebook, even if I get no feedback. Then at least it is not my fault if people have the wrong impression. I'm going to try to cross-post even the 'unimportant' 'too personal' stuff for a while and see if that helps.

There is also the fact that livejournal allows me to give responses to people's experiences rather than just dealing with the more surface stuff. On facebook most people do not bare their soul, so there isn't a lot of valuable reflection I can give; an "I read this and I care" means a lot more in response to a soul-baring than it does in response to a post that isn't very personal. So I can't show my caring so easily there, even with the same amount of effort. That, I do not think there is a remedy to. There are simply too many people and too many posts for me to be able to find the emotionally-deep posts that would be best for thoughtful responses.

ETA: Just realized that the fact that my comments on LJ have mood-appropriate icons (often of my face which makes me more relatable) and the fact that I am much more affectionate in my speech on LJ must also contribute to the difference in perception. The latter I can be conscious of and shift somewhat on facebook. I don't necessarily feel less affectionate toward people I know through FB, but I tend to be more reserved with affection there, not sure why. Perhaps because it does feel much more public. People can happen across my facebook pretty easily, whereas when people come to my LJ, it is a much more deliberate act of connection.

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Comments
wantedonvoyage ══╣Lokie╠══
I'm kind of doing the opposite right now... I decided to scale way back on Facebook posts because I was afraid--in the face of two friends' lives publicly unraveling on there--that my constant chirping about this night out or that concert could be seen as hurtful (especially as one of them had taken to basically begging for money on there).

To me the tighter list of LJ readers are people who are invested and want to get to know each other at a higher level of detail. The fact that (most of) my LJ friends list are not people whom I know in real life gives me a (maybe false) sense of security that I can be more candid. The few people who "cross over" into the "real world" have also done some soul-baring on here so I feel like we have that bond.
kiwi ══╣╠══
I honestly feel like this could have been my exact response. FB, despite me being "hidden" on it, is more public. LJ is much more private, with a smaller group of people.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
I can understand that reasoning. My goal with facebook is similar to my goal with LJ; openness and connection first, social justice a close second.
mr_sadhead ══╣╠══
I've got my LJ set up so it mirrors my posts to FB. I tend to look at FB more often, and I update my FB about as much as I always used to, so it works out. I am a little circumspect about what I throw out for mass consumption as opposed to sharing with my LJ constituency, so I have three levels of sharing: full (open to FB), guarded (not mirrored to FB), closed (LJ friends only).
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
I do a similar thing, but with probably more extreme differences in proportion. I'd say at least 70% of what I put on LJ I also put on FB, at least 90% of what I post is public, and probably less than 10% is locked to LJ-friends only.
sabr ══╣canine : zella'nar╠══
There have been moments that I have been taken aback by your perceived demeanor on Facebook, it seems so incongruous to your personality in real life. At the time, I felt like it was either my own interpretation, affected by my own emotions and state at the time, or that it was something that I lacked the context to know the entire story. I cant even remember what it was now - but I know that I commented my own opinion, though it seemed to differ, and I remember feeling a little afraid that you would think of me less fondly because we differed, even though I know that is not true! You are very fierce on Facebook, and I feel that here you are more inquisitive and open for discussion. At the same time though, Facebook is less protective - any asshat can just walk right in and attack, whereas Livejournal is much more protective.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
That is true. The fact that LJ has a smaller group of people now seems to mean it has fewer people just trollin. I hope that as I work to be more open on FB people will get less afraid of me. I don't want anyone I like to fear me at all (except maybe in negotiated consensual kink situations lolz).
kmiotutsie ══╣╠══
I've always thought of social media platforms as very different environments. lj was always like hanging out in an intimate coffeeshop, where people came to have in-depth conversations; sit and stay for a while and get to know you. facebook is more like a crowded warehouse where everyone is talking loudly; sometimes it's friendly and sometimes it's intense but mostly it's just loud and a little overwhelming. When someone posts a status it's like getting up on a soapbox with a megaphone-- you might still be drowned out, but you're trying. On the same token, it's not an environment where the people present are often in a space to have that same kind of intimate connection, you know what I mean? Also, a lack of feedback might or might not accurately reflect who is observing; I frequently read the lj posts you link to fb without leaving feedback, often because I'll open the link in a new tab on my phone or something and it will be quite some time before I have the time and mental space to read it, by which point I'm not longer on facebook. I can't speak for everyone, but I get similar feedback from my facebook friends list: people will PM me to tell me that they LOOOVE the links I post and they read them all the time, but they'll refer to things I posted that got nary a like/share/comment. Hard to ever tell, so I just post what I wanna. But yes. your internet personalities are definitely different, but it's also two (plus) very different environments!
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
it is so odd to me! I dunno, maybe it's old-fashioned to expect some kind of response if people are reading? Maybe that was the olden days and people have gotten less participatory and more spectator-y.
ragnarok_08 ══╣Original ★ night divine╠══
There is also the fact that livejournal allows me to give responses to people's experiences rather than just dealing with the more surface stuff. On facebook most people do not bare their soul, so there isn't a lot of valuable reflection I can give; an "I read this and I care" means a lot more in response to a soul-baring than it does in response to a post that isn't very personal.

I'm the same way with LJ and Facebook - Livejournal is more personal to me, as I can be more open and I can build connections here, while on Facebook I can keep in contact with some old friends and pop in every now and then, watching what I post there.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
I never intentionally decided to be less open on facebook, it just kind of grew that way without me noticing. But now that I have noticed I can redirect it!
sabraka ══╣♪♫╠══
That's really brave forwarding your personal journaling to FB with the possibility of no feedback. I remember trying that once a long time ago, & had a similar experience of people not reacting, possibly not even seeing my posts. I know FB is all about everyone sharing everything with everybody, but rarely is anyone very "soul-baring" though. It probably is that it's just too public there, with much too much else always going on. It wasn't long before I gave it up. Funny how we can be defined, or perceived differently, depending on differences in social media platforms.
belenen ══╣honesty╠══
Thank you for the affirmation on that -- it certainly feels brave and vulnerable to share the personal stuff there.
b00kl0ver ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣confused╠══
I don't consider myself quick to dismiss people -- though I am quick to dismiss arguments that I have already heard over and over, and people often attach identity to their ideas I guess, so they feel dismissed? I dunno. I don't feel dismissed if people dismiss my argument. I feel baffled by neurotypical perceptions more than any other aspect of 'normality.'
b00kl0ver ══╣╠══
re_vised ══╣╠══
I feel LJ is a much better place to delve deeper into self-exploration or other personal/friend issues. Facebook seems to impersonal to me most of the time. I'm happy to use it and connect with friends or family I might not otherwise have a lot of contact with, but that's about it. Unfortunately, at the moment my Facebook feed is inundated with political posts and I have taken a step away to keep my wits about me.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
I totally agree that LJ is a better place in pretty much every way except for organizing events! I can't imagine what FB would even be like if people were really open and honest there. I do have a few friends who use FB like I use LJ though, which is interesting.
re_vised ══╣╠══
Hmm. Using FB like LJ would be very hard for me. I suppose if you had a very selective friends list in FB it might work well. Though, with so much of FB searchable I wouldn't be comfortable!
on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.