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I am a girl on the internet. Yes, I said it. A girl on the internet. There really are quite a few of us. I can type. I can play games with the best of you. And you, my friend, are about to get owned by a girl.
I've been watching and observing the internet for quite some time now. It's like a science project with the usual control and variables. The control is: I am a girl. The variables are the medium through which this fact is expressed. The results all point to the same paradoxical conclusion: I am a girl, but girls do not exist on the internet.
Case 1: Adventures in IRC
[boy1] Teleios is a girl.
[boy2] omg, r u serious?
[boy1] yup, i heard her on vent.
[boy2] omg pics, now.
[boy1] c'mon. you're not a girl if u don't show us pics.
[Teleios] I am a girl.
[boy2] then show us a pic.
[boy1] teleios is probably a guy using a voice thing cuz she won't show a pic.
[boy2] ya, there are no girls on the intarweb.
The above is an actual log from an IRC channel I frequent. This isn't just a regular run of the mill IRC channel, this is the channel where a large number of the players from my World of Warcraft server spend their time when at work, or during weekly maintenance, or just to complain to the other faction when they are dealing with gankage.
This is the story of my internet life. (I'm not quite sure if it's a good or bad thing that I have an internet life, but internet life it is.) I'm a girl, I play games and I exist on the internet. Or so you think. Time after time, I get told I'm not a girl and that I don't exist. It's happened so much that I'm beginning to think that it's true.
So, I spend some time getting to know them. Who are these mysterious creatures called girls if they don't exist on the internet? What does this mean for the men of the internet?
[boy3] teleios you gurl, pix plz?
[boy3] kthxxb ai
It becomes more apparent to me that this is a real issue. Why is it I cannot be a girl if I don't show my picture? As time goes on, I get more confused. The idea of having guys obsess over the fact that a girl will not show her picture means one thing for men of the internet: They are desperate.
Case 2: In-Game Meanderings
I come home from work one night and I log into my drug of choice, World of Warcraft. It's late, and I want to kill. I try to maintain a low profile because sometimes being a girl on the internet gets a bit troublesome. The immature comments from the kids ("will u go out with me") and the "omg, she's an internet whore" from everyone else gets to be a bit too much. But having too many friends makes it impossible to keep the secret.
I receive an in-game tell. "Hey Teleios, would you like to run Stratholme with us, we need a priest." I reread it, scrutinizing every last detail. I'm a priest; I get a lot of group invites. Most of them get turned down. This guy, however, has proper grammar and asks nicely - well, he asked, period. It wasn't just a random group invite. I'm poor and could use a bit more coin, so I decided to give it a go. I respond to him, "Sure, why not?" We head to Stratholme.