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wundayatta's avatar

What psychological or practical role does fluther play in your life?

Asked by wundayatta (58357 points ) August 14th, 2009

I’m not asking why you like or dislike fluther. I’m not asking if you are addicted to the place.

I want to know how fluther changes your life, both psychologically, and practically. For example, for me, fluther gives me a chance to think things through. It also serves as a place for me to practice writing the kinds of things I write. It helps me make connections to others, and to get to know people, at least, at a somewhat superficial level.

What about you? Is it a time waster? A place where you go to learn things? Do you have practical questions you need answered? Does it serve as a place to socialize? Whatever it is, why do you need to use fluther to further that function instead of doing something else that might be more traditional?

I.e, if you use it to make friends, why do you go to fluther instead of making friends in person?

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22 Answers

mrentropy's avatar

It keeps me entertained.

erichw1504's avatar

I’m not really addicted, I just find it fun to be able to help people. So psychologically I’m satisfied. It’s good for socializing, getting to know people, and it’s not too much of a time waster.

Rant's avatar

I’d like to think that it’s a time waster but I think my subconsious wants me to help people

markyy's avatar

It helps me with my English writing skills. Practical and philosophical questions that I never really thought of before or are out of my comfort zone. It’s very easy to participate (thank god for javascript!) and in that sense I do feel more connected to fluther than other sites.

Also I find that there are a lot of Q&A sites out there that are very anonymous. I like that fluther has a small but tight knitted community where you can learn about users by their answer, and sometimes even predict what they will say. Even though I do not know these users and I didn’t join to meet some of them, I can imagine you start feeling closer to some of them.

whatthefluther's avatar

Getting @sccrowell’s full and undivided attention is not an easy matter, especially when she is engrossed on fluther. So, when I decided to propose marriage to her, I opted for the most practical method that would ensure her attention: fluther, which proved to be not only an appropriate medium for proposing marriage, but also a very successful one.
See ya….Gary aka wtf

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

It’s someplace where most people speak honestly most of the time. That doesn’t always happen offline.

ShanEnri's avatar

I do learn new things from the collective. I enjoy being able to speak my opinion whether everyone likes it/agrees with it or not. It gives me the chance to read what others think about some of the same things I think about. It makes me broaden my mind to think about why others think/feel the way they do.

marinelife's avatar

Fluther makes me think about issues.

Fluther offers me access to different viewpoints.

Fluther keeps me learning and discovering new things.

Fluther is a source of warm human connection, which is not a minor thing when you work at home and you just moved to a new city.

Fluther makes me laugh or smile every time I am on it.

Fluther reinforces my belief in the basic goodness of most people.

casheroo's avatar

@Marina GA!

I like that Fluther challenges me. It makes me look at things from a different perspective. I learn a lot on here, not just from the quetions alone, but from the experiences of others. I know if I don’t understand something, simply asking is all I have to do. I don’t feel silly, because I want to learn.
It also makes me laugh, and entertains me so it’s my connection to people when I’m waiting up at night for my husband to get home.

Dog's avatar

I third @Marina.
Fluther also keeps me company on all night studio painting sessions. When I take a break there is always something interesting to read.

hearkat's avatar

Fluther helps me learn and share different perspectives on a vast array of topics; and to practice to develop my skills social discourse, especially in expressing my thoughts clearly and respectfully – as well as learning from the examples of others.

Fluther gives me an opportunity to share my ideas and experiences with others; and when someone else finds my answer beneficial, it helps me feel good about myself (which, as many of you know, has been a lifelong struggle).

DominicX's avatar

The reason why I have been going to these Q&A sites is that I find I am interested in a wide variety of topics and am interested in discussing them (I also happen to be very opinionated) and most people I talk to on a day-to-day basis (other than my parents) are not interested in discussing them (for the most part; I’ve had some pretty meaningful discussions about issues with my friends before). I can do that here anytime and it allows me to talk about things that I really want to talk about. It also allows me to talk about some more private things as relating to my friends’ behavior or my boyfriend or something—stuff that I wouldn’t want them to know about. Not to mention, I get a much wider variety of people here, including those from other countries and those of different ages. Hence part of the reason why I cannot stand when people on these sites judge me because of my age, as that defeats one of the benefits of these sites that I feel I receive. I am constantly learning new things from these sites and I consider that a great benefit. Sometimes I feel like I’m more “in tune” than most of my friends since they don’t spend time on sites like these.

Of course, it’s not all perfect and when I find this site is making me really angry, I question whether or not I need to be here and often take a break from it.

Keep in mind that “these sites” refers to AIROW, wis.dm, and Fluther, two of which are gone. I was just referring to all the ones I had been to in the past as they are all very similar.

cbloom8's avatar

It answer my questions and makes me think. It overall helps me with other parts of my life.

kruger_d's avatar

It’s cheap entertainment. Kind of a conversation grab bag. I like the practical info and the generally supportive atmosphere.

Quagmire's avatar

With me it’s just a break from the computer work I have to do. It’s not the only web site I go to for these breaks, either.

rooeytoo's avatar

I am living in a very lonely place and although I have never been what would be called a “people person” I do miss having friends to talk to. So Fluther fills a need for me. I wonder if I will be as faithful to it when we move to an area where I have access to more outside interests. Only time will tell. In the meantime, I enjoy the variety and diversity of ideas and opinions found here.

I do find it daunting though when I give my own opinion and am challenged and have to defend it. Over and over and over again. I believe all are entitled to their opinion whether it agrees with mine or not. I do not look for arguments here and rarely respond directly AT a person and am always taken aback when someone does that to me. But that is probably another topic!

It is also an excellent arena to practice communication skills, to use “I” statements instead of “you, you, you.” Often it is like a meeting online.

nebule's avatar

at worst: it’s a luxury that fuels the yearning inside me for acceptance
at best: it makes me realise that I do belong somewhere, sometimes, even if it’s not in reality and even if I don’t hear what I want to hear all the time

tiffyandthewall's avatar

sometimes it’s hard to find good conversation and ideas in ‘real life’.
i am 17. my friends don’t usually want to discuss the psychology behind things, religious absurdities and truths, or theorize about random and confusing hypothetical situations. jellies do.
fluther is a ‘time waster’ for me, but a productive time waster. even though i put off my homework to fluther, i’m learning more fluthering than i would googling answers for my classes.
i’m not quite an open book in real life, even with people i know. but on fluther, i am a lot more open.
also, i’m a night owl. at 3am, i am ready to communicate. i don’t know anyone awake at this time who wants to talk, especially about the things i want to talk about. i come to fluther, and it doesn’t matter who’s awake and who’s in bed fighting for pillow space with their cat. there is always something to read about or respond to.
also, i love talking about abstract things, and i can’t think of a better place to do so than here. the lurve doesn’t hurt my ego, either! sometimes when i’m having a face to face conversation, i can’t quite tell if i’m communicating my point well enough. when i say something on fluther, GAs are like a thumbs up, which is always nice. or a virtual high five, which is even better!

Jenniehowell's avatar

I love fluther – I do have a level of addiction to it – it gives me an outlet for debating & questioning that would be viewed by many family & friend as me being dis-satisfied & confrontational which is actually not the case. It is simply that I learn thru debate & therefore by learning i grow & in turn improve myself & become stronger on both an independent level & in unity with others around the globe. I believe that candor us one of the biggest forms of respect & honor you can give to another & I appreciate the fluther community for that candor (even though there are some less mature out there who use it as a forum for distributing insults & strengthening their weaknesses) all in all it’s a good place, good experience & honest environment where no one has an excuse not to learn, grow, better themselves therefore bettering the global community overall. Yay for fluther!!

Resonantscythe's avatar

It give me a chance to have, or at least witness, real conversations with people. I’ve had little chance to have such conversations until very lately.(Was more or less socially dead for a few years)

kitszu's avatar

I’m a fairly private person. I’m social with most of the people I work with, and I socialize with a select few occassionally outside of work but the only “social vehicals” in the area are bars. No one here is interested in thinking about or debating any of the things I think about. My brain is fucking bored! That was one thing I did have back in OH, a super diverse group of people to talk and argue and debate with in person.

nebule's avatar

Recently, it is helping me get back to myself a little bit and giving me the courage to say what I feel in a safe place.

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