Monday, 22 February 2016

Avatars, @gravatar & me

It has been a funny few days.

I have been busy -  I am getting ready for StAnza starting next week preparing my readings. There has been a seedbed of poetry going on and obsessive reading about farming. And of course the day job and then something that seemed unrelated to all of the above, entering an orienteering competition.

Oentries the orienteering entry system allows you to personalise your entry using a Gravatar - the universal avatar creation utility available online. But something that makes avatar creation so simple still doesn't help with one thing. How do I want to present myself?

A lot of people don't bother at all. Does this say they don't care? Didn't bother? Are more interested in orienteering than self-presentation? Or are avatars the online equal of personal grooming? And coming out without one is like coming to work without clean hair and tidy clothes?

Of course this is a sports entry board. There is a part of me that feels an avatar is much more a gaming concept. A better self. An aspirational self. A self equipped to take on virtual challenges. And possibly as in books like William Gibson's Neuromancer leading virtual lives that can get a little out of control at times.

And all of the above complicated by the simple female feeling that I should look presentable and well, OK.

So what did I come up with? Me in a hoodie looking curious...

You can find Gravatar here and make your own investigations And of course if you just want to go orienteering after reading this

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