Saturday, January 2, 2010

Chatrooms aka Social Wastelands

In my continued attempts to "put myself out there" in ways most suitable to my introverted personality, I decided to start going into chatrooms again. When I was circa 14 years old, I was a regular in a few chatrooms. I talked to people from all over the world, mostly about our favorite music. I had joined chatrooms relating to my favorite bands and TV shows. Now, I know that there are perverts, pedophiles and sexophiles in chatrooms. Occasionally, I'd get messages asking for A/S/L and if I wanted to "cyber." However, chatting was overall positive, friendly and fun. Also, I have a couple friends who actually met their spouses in chatrooms. So I figured, why not check these out again after about a decade hiatus?

Wow. What has happened? I downloaded ICQ again and perused some Yahoo chatrooms and was appalled by the caliber of people in those particular rooms! Everyone was just asking "A/S/L?" and looking for a good time, to put it politely.

I decided to go into a "Christianity" chatroom in hopes of doing some faith sharing. I ended up in a "debate" with some Atheists and was trying to defend my beliefs and faith at 11:00 at night. Needless to say, I was not in the mood for a fight, I mean debate :-P. I basically asked why these Atheists were in a Christian chatroom, and they answered that it was a public chatroom and therefore it was okay to debate about Christianity there, a somewhat adolescent "it's a free country, there's no rule AGAINST it," response. True, it was a public chatroom and it would actually be very un-Christian to make a chatroom where non-Christians weren't welcomed. But come on. It might be "legal" for a non-Christian to be in the room, but is it really moral to go into a Christian chatroom with the intent of proving the silly, illogical, blind-believing Christians wrong, of picking a fight? If I went to an Islam chatroom, it would be to ask a question, without agenda, i.e. "What's the criteria for meat to be halal?" or "Is it law for Muslim women to wear burkas, or just an optional practice?" I wouldn't be trying to look for holes in their answer and pick a fight! That's disrespectful.

Anyway, after the cybersex requests and attacks from Atheists, I decided to abandon the chatroom idea as a means for meeting new people, at least for the time being. I wonder if the #Jamiroquai or #SailorMoon rooms still exist, and if any of my old online buddies still go?

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