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wundayatta's avatar

Do you picture your fellow flutherers?

Asked by wundayatta (58599points) October 6th, 2009

An avatar may not be much of a clue if it doesn’t have a picture (or maybe-picture) of the flutherer. If there are only words, I suppose it’s like a character in a book that the author neglected to describe. Although, with books, I don’t pay much attention to descriptions. I just have my own idea of what the character looks like.

We’re all characters on fluther, speaking in our own written words. Sometimes I look at how the writer writes, and I think that English is not their native language. Sometimes their story suggests a nationality to me—like if someone has overbearing and controlling parents, I think Asian, because I’ve heard and read so many stories by various Asians where that is a theme.

I have no clue about race from the words that are written. It is often a surprise when someone mentions their race. Similarly, avatars give me no clue about sexuality. It is only when that becomes a topic, that I picture someone. I think I also have images of people based on religious or political points of view. Sometimes people mention how tall they are or how much they weigh, or the color of their hair.

I can rarely remember these details, but I do create an image of a person based on how they write. When someone is from England, I picture a council estate, and, well, someone who looks English, as my mind seems to perceive it.

What do you do? Do you create a picture in your mind, or does it remain hazy until you see a picture in an avatar? Do avatar pictures ever surprise you? How do you think your picture of others (if you have one) is developed?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

142 Answers

eponymoushipster's avatar

I’m on facebook with a lot of them, so i already know what a lot of them look like.
and the Fluther photobucket helps as well.

really, when it’s someone i don’t know outside of fluther, it’s just text and words to me.

Grisaille's avatar

For those that don’t have personal pictures as their avatars (and those that I know what they look like through Facebook or a similar service), not necessarily. I imagine them as their avatar, not as a person.

I’ve mentioned this somewhere before, but I generally do not see anyone on the internet as a physical, living, breathing person unless I know what they look like. To me, you are all just problems for me to solve. Your words are my playthings, just words to play with.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

I’ve seen the pictures at the Fluther photobucket, which ruins it for me, as I was sure that @eponymoushipster really was a monkey with his face trapped in a shirtsleeve.

I try to remember that every Jelly is a real living, breathing, feeling person, but sometimes, the clever quips are just too hard not to type out.

Fluther isn’t like other web sites, as these people will come back and let you know that your words can bite you in the ass. I am probably that way because I am of the older generation, where computers are something novel. To younger people, they can’t or don’t remember a world without computers. So perceptions are going to vary.

IBERnineD's avatar

I actually have pictures of some of my Fluther buddies…which makes me sound creepy….

Besides that I do picture what users look like, and I am generally surprised when I find out what they do look like. I am apparently very bad at creating images from questions and responses. Although when I read books I am usually spot on when imaging what the author was thinking when they were creating their characters. So maybe I just need a book on every Flutherite to image them correctly…which is creepy again… :)

fireinthepriory's avatar

The answer is… yes. I imagine you as a giant, colorful bum. :)

No, really.

eponymoushipster's avatar

just for the record, @IBERnineD is just as pretty as her avatar

Aethelwine's avatar

I’m on Facebook as well with many other flutherites and it is nice to know what the person looks like behind the avatar. For those that I don’t know, I just picture the avatar. It really is hard to imagine what someone looks like just by what they write.

Jude's avatar

Same as some of the others have said; I get to see some of the jelly’s lovely mugs on Facebook (they’re all rather lurvely.). As far as the rest, yes, I do form a mental image of what I think that they look like. And, I’m usually surprised when I do finally get see a picture of them.

Axemusica's avatar

I’d like write a little more, but I’m on my iPhone.

I wonder what people think of me, since avatar is kind of creepy looking, lol.

mattbrowne's avatar

Yes, a little. When trying to picture you I’m ignoring your avatar, @daloon . You’re way too nice…

markyy's avatar

I can’t help it, but I do. I don’t know anyone of you inside or outside Fluther, but in some weird way I do form mental images of you.

Not that it is helpful at all, because I have a feeling that those who want to be anonymous are very careful about releasing information that can be used in a mental picture. The mental pictures I do form are mostly stimulated by avatars, which is also quite misleading as a lot of people have their boy/girl friend or kid as an avatar. It already happened to me a couple of times where I have to go: Wait weren’t you a dude/girl? Oh, the avatar must have gotten me again.

To be honest @daloon, you’re one of the few flutherites I have formed an image of. I always picture you as a friendly Dick Cheney. Hope you’re not offended by it, but you’re advice always sounds like it comes from someone with a lot of experience.

markyy's avatar

Oh, and sometimes I read the_compassionate_heretic’s posts in the voice of Jemaine (disturbing, right?).

Saturated_Brain's avatar

Actually, I do picture Flutherites, even if they don’t have pictures of themselves. I imagine what they look like and sometimes when they give aids it helps. For example, I see Dr_C as a towering guy in his 30s (6’7 [or was it 8 or 9?]? That’s just crazy) with some Italian features (dark hair features prominently in my mental image).

I have never seen him before but if I ever do, I know I’ll either be a very smug person or a very shocked one.

Generally speaking, how one answers questions gives me clues about what they look like, although I’m usually dead wrong. Another example: I was very surprised by augustlan (she looks like a librarian!) and cak (she looked just beautiful on her facebook photo I saw). Hmm.. And @eponymoushipster also surprised me (the photobucket page has your human mug). He looks… Way more normal than I would’ve expected a guy with such an eccentric edge to look.. I can list so many more examples right here right now with glee but I think that it isn’t exactly the time to do so.. (But @daloon, I have on occasion wondered what the face behind the giant colourful butt is like).

Generally, the nicer and more mature your answers are, the older I feel you are, which is also why the stinging style of certain Flutherites surprise me when I see what they look like.

Conclusion? Looks ain’t got nothing on your personality.

But that doesn’t mean it isn’t fun to think it does

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

On a different note, I’m actually cool with not knowing what people look like behind their avatars. I’m happy living with my mental image of them and besides, it adds an element of ambiguity and mysteriousness to them. Giving them a real tangible face bums it for me a bit, especially when this whole mental image I’ve built up comes crashing down back to reality.

Then again, this is probably a good thing. My head floats around in Skycastleland way too much.

J0E's avatar

I think there was a thread where a bunch of people posted pictures, but I can’t find it.

J0E's avatar

@jmah I meant an actual Fluther thread.

Jude's avatar

@J0E Oh, sorry. I’ve never seen that thread.

casheroo's avatar

I tend to picture who I’m talking to, like how I picture characters from a book. It just happens.
I do know what quite a few jellies look like, sometimes I’m a little shocked because they look so different than I expected…but in a good way!

J0E's avatar

I thread I’m thinking of is only graduation photos I guess, here it is anyway.

FutureMemory's avatar

daloon, is that your ass? always wondered…

Grisaille's avatar

@jmah You know, looking through that photobucket account… Fluther really is an attractive conglomeration of individuals.

Harp's avatar

@Grisaille True, but you’d have to consider that the homelier the flutherer, the less likely they are to post their picture. Something tells me that if you ask for pictures from any group, the good-looking ones will be over-represented. Notice that my picture’s not up there, for instance.

Grisaille's avatar

self-depreciating comments make me sad in my pants

attractiveness isn’t so much about being good-looking or homely, it’s about quirkiness and style.

personality in a picture reigns supreme over physical beauty, forever and always.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

@markyy I have daloon’s REAL picture, & believe me, he’s no Dick Chaney. MUCH better looking. He has a great smile. :-)

I also see many of us here on Facebook & I have emailed pics of many from here, too. I love to put a face with the ‘voice’.

Jude's avatar

I’ve always pictured @Gailcalled to look Dame Judi Dench-ish.

Zaku's avatar

Bad news, Daloon. I picture other Flutherers (when I do) as their avatars…

jbfletcherfan's avatar

@Zaku I can assure you…I am NOT really a squirrel! LOLLLLLL

Grisaille's avatar

And I’m not a chain-smoking Oriental-looking dude with a wonky mustache!

…oh, wait.

Zaku's avatar

@jbfletcherfan All right. I don’t think you are one. But I am still picturing you as one. :-)

P.S. I’m not a statue of a lion, either. ;-)

jbfletcherfan's avatar

@Zaku If you want to see the real me, go to fluther’s photo bucket site…...

J0E's avatar

And I don’t walk around with clown paint 24/7.

Maybe 12/7, but definitely not 24/7.

Aethelwine's avatar

I promise I do not look like this.

wundayatta's avatar

I’m with @Harp about posting my picture. When someone does send a picture to someone privately, I would like to point out that that may not really be a picture of me. Or it could have been photoshopped. You never know. The internet is full of people who are not who they purport to be.

eponymoushipster's avatar

@daloon you’re totally right. to my flutherites, i apologize. how you see me on facebook/photobucket – that’s not the real me.

this is

i’m so ashamed.

IBERnineD's avatar

@Grisaille I could have sworn you looked like an Asian Robert Downey Jr. or was that just me? ;)

I actually live with one Fluther lady so I get to see her gorgeous mug everyday! And another I also see everyday, hence the “I have pictures of some of my Fluther buddies”

patg7590's avatar

everyone is their avatar to me.
@eponymoushipster is a sarcastic monkey
@daloon is a talking ass crack
@Harp is actually a harp
@casheroo is a 60’s swimsuit model
@J0E is a creepy clown that murders people and roots for Michigan

I can’t help it. Sometimes, people change thier avatar, and then all my associations of how I perceive them are completely ruined.
sorry if you weren’t mentioned here, I just don’t know you that well yet

wundayatta's avatar

@patg7590 Yeah. When I blow smoke, you can also smell it! Oddly, that has the opposite of the intended effect. People aren’t supposed to pay attention to me, but when I make smells, it’s hard for people not to pay attention—you know, so they can know which way to run away. ;-)

Allie's avatar

I’m a bunch of orange squares.

Anyway, I know what a lot of the Jellies look like. Even though I know what they look like, though, I don’t always picture that when I read their answers. Pretty much everyone on the site, to me, is whatever they write. Since I rarely picture the faces of the ones whose faces I know, and I don’t know what the rest of you look like, I just read what you write and take that in. I don’t make up images of you in my head or anything. It’s all words on a screen.

Sorry, if that’s really confusing. I tried my best to explain it.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

I’m constantly wondering what people really look like. A lot of times I’ve even assumed the wrong sex of a person and when it is later mentioned in a post I’m left feeling surprised.

Response moderated
Jude's avatar

Someone’s ass needs to be banned.

fireinthepriory's avatar

@jmah You got that right! I’ve been flagging my little (ok, medium-to-large) butt off.

holden's avatar

My avatar’s my dad.

Axemusica's avatar

My avatar is me & it is photoshopped, but only the hoodie was altered. It’s originally brown.

Dr_C's avatar

I do tend to picture jellies in my mind. The ones i have on facebook and tumblr and so on i tend to imagine in motion. What i mean to say is that i can imagine them reacting pysically to certain quips, smiling or shaking their head or doing SOMETHING. The rest i tend to give them generic nationality etc.

I can tell you @IBERnineD is SUPER pretty… and when i imagine @Grisaille reacting to a question (even though i know he doesn’t look much like this) i see him as a slightly older version of that “Short round” kid from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.

ShanEnri's avatar

I tried the facebook thing, but no one accepted my requests! But no I don’t picture them at all.

patg7590's avatar

@ShanEnri what is the facebook thing? How do jellies find each other on facebook?

ShanEnri's avatar

I went through the group.

patg7590's avatar

cause that helps

Zen's avatar

That’s a good question @daloon. I’m not a visual person anyway, and even if I were, I don’t think I’d pay too much attention to the avatars, as they can change. I am aware that most people are, though, and for that purpose I try to keep the same avatar.

I read what people write, and “envision” hearing them say it. I assign a male or female voice, sometimes erroneously if I don’t even know the person. Not sure why I do this.

:-)

Blondesjon's avatar

Only when I’m in the shower.

Allie's avatar

@patg7590: @ShanEnri is talking about the Fluther group on Facebook. (S)he looked through the members.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

Well, since I know what people look like because of the Fluther photobucket page, I ca picture them when reading their answers. The only one that surprised me was @Blondsjon. I pictured him much different than what I saw on the podcast over at Ustream. I was so disappointed. no offense, @Blondesjon, I’m not saying you are ugly, just not what I expected.

casheroo's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra So I was what you expected? I’ve never been disappointed, but definitely surprised when I see a face sometimes.

Blondesjon's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra . . .My ego is big enough to ask you what you did expect.

uh, so, what did you expect?

Saturated_Brain's avatar

Again I’m wondering whether I should join the Facebook group….

Saturated_Brain's avatar

But it’ll ruin the suspense by showing my ‘orrible mug =(

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@casheroo—I expected you to be the girl with the unbrella, yeah, so you were a bit of a shock.

@Blondesjon I expected you to be thinner, taller, and with much more hair, that was blond.

It’s all okay, though, people rarely picture me as the dorky looking bald guy they see in my picture, or maybe they do, everyone has been really kind not to tell me what they really think. }:^P

Saturated_Brain's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra I’ve pictured you as somebody around 5’11, at the very least 5’10. You’re rather well-progressed in years and you may or may not be bald. The bald woman in your avatar in no way can be you. I do remember that avatar of the banana flasher though, that one might be you. =P

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@Saturated_Brain if you go to the Fluther Photobucket you’ll see exactly what I look like, eyeball tattoo and everything, and as for height, I’m 6’ 2”, and yes, I am well progressed in age, having been rode hard and put away wet too many times.

Blondesjon's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra . . .we never used apostrophes in our usernames. . .

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@Blondesjon yeah, well there ya go. }:^)

Jude's avatar

Casheroo, you looked just as I expected – gorgeous. And, @evelyns_pet_zebra, I love your pics. I wasn’t surprised, at all. And, because of you, I am now a little more tolerant of the creepy crawlies. :)

My picture was taken a month ago. Thing is, I’m 37, but, I find that I look a lot younger in my pic.

rooeytoo's avatar

I just looked at the facebook list and there are a lot of people there whose names & faces I don’t recognize from the photobucket pics. Are there a lot of people who are not actually in Fluther ? Or are their names totally different from their usernames in here?

casheroo's avatar

@jmah I saw your booty picture the other day. Nice, just like I expected ;) That was you on twitter, right? i can’t find the link lol

Jude's avatar

lol, no, it was my g/f’s. I took it down.

casheroo's avatar

haha, well it was very nice

wundayatta's avatar

I was looking for a picture to put on photobucket—not my picture, mind you—but still, a picture. It was to be a picture that looks like how I think I look, or maybe how I want to be thought of, but there wasn’t anything just right. Then I realized, I was working too hard for something that was pretty stupid, anyway. So I’ll just leave things as they are.

patg7590's avatar

feels like the dumbest little kid ever
where is the photobucket

eponymoushipster's avatar

sexy sarcastic monkey

DrasticDreamer's avatar

For those that don’t have pictures up already, I always wonder what they look like. Some have surprised me, others havent. Generally the surprise comes when I had them pegged as the opposite sex. :D The stronger the Fluther personality, the more curious I tend to be. I have always wondered what you look like @daloon, probably partly because you’re the first Flutherer I actually talked to. I see you as tall, wise and serene looking.

Aethelwine's avatar

@DrasticDreamer I also picture @daloon with rosy cheeks.

Saturated_Brain's avatar

I’ve looked through the photobucket group, and so many preconceptions have been destroyed.

<sob>

But you’re all beautiful people still

patg7590's avatar

@astrochuck had me fooled.
@casheroo I thought you were at least 40 haha no idea why
@eponymoushipster- I had no idea.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Saturated_Brain Where is your photo?

casheroo's avatar

@patg7590 Um, okay. I’m definitely not 40, I’m only 23.

Saturated_Brain's avatar

@jonsblond It ain’t on. And I don’t think I’ll have it on for some time.

Let’s just say that I’m not ready yet. =)

patg7590's avatar

@casheroo yeah I don’t know why I thought that. I was just so surprised when I saw your picture. Your avatar makes me think you grew up in the 50’s or 60’s I guess.

wundayatta's avatar

@DrasticDreamer If only. Try the opposite image—you’ll be a lot closer to the reality.

Saturated_Brain's avatar

Fireside is a guy?!

Grisaille's avatar

this thread is hilarious

“wait… what?! YOU’RE A WOMAN?!

jbfletcherfan's avatar

@Grisaille I agree. That’s always been a big complaint with this site with me. I sometimes can’t tell if you’re a man or a woman. There should be a place where you have to put your gender.

Aethelwine's avatar

I’ve been mistaken for a man many times because of my username. My Broncos avatar didn’t help either.

IBERnineD's avatar

I’m not sure I have ever been confused as a guy. I will admit though that I thought @Grisaille was a girl the first time I encountered him and I confuse @jonsblond and @Blondesjon all the time. And @Dr_C you are sweet, thank you!

Allie's avatar

<—Has never been mistaken for a guy. =]

Jude's avatar

I have.

Jude's avatar

heh heh. :)

Saturated_Brain's avatar

Somebody kill me please..

OpryLeigh's avatar

Funnily enough I was just thinking this the other day because I found myself wondering (if they hadn’t made it obvious in previous posts or from their picture) what race or ethnicity some Fluther users were.

Dog's avatar

I missed this thread somehow. I love breezing through the Fluther photos- and yes I am surprised by some but not that surprised.

@Grisaille Love that 1940’s vintage look!

Looking through does make me miss some folk- like @3or4monsters who ran off, got married and never returned.

Grisaille's avatar

:D

Thank you kindly. You’re quite the looker, you know. And that woman next to you ain’t bad either.

That was a joke. Applaud and laugh.

IBERnineD's avatar

@Grisaille oh, I know you are a man now, it’s not my fault you had ambiguous avatar for a while!

Grisaille's avatar

That makes two times that I’ve been mistaken for a woman. First time was @Saturated_Brain, the bastard.

IBERnineD's avatar

@Grisaille loooovvveee you! :)

Grisaille's avatar

You’re lucky I like you.

rooeytoo's avatar

@Grisaille – you should be flattered someone thought you were a woman, it is a compliment!

Grisaille's avatar

Considering the intelligent, strong, and successful women I’ve known and the women here on Fluther, you may be on to something.

Dr_C's avatar

I don’t see how anyone could confuse @casheroo for a woman in her 40’s! she’s a hottie!
Plus her clone is on House every week… and was just in GQ

Dr_C's avatar

@Grisaille i still picture you as the “short round” kid from Temple of Doom… not sure why

Grisaille's avatar

…Okie dokie Dr. Jones…! Hold on to your potatoes!

Saturated_Brain's avatar

@Grisaille I don’t know why I’m mistaking so many peoples’ genders. It ain’t my fault! It’s the drugs the doc gave me!

Also, when did I mistake you for a woman? I’m trying so hard to remember but my mind’s all fuzzy

patg7590's avatar

@Dr_C I only though @casheroo was 40 because I was judging solely based on the avatar.
at least I knew she was a girl

Saturated_Brain's avatar

@patg7590 HEY. Was that a snipe at me?! Hmph.

Aethelwine's avatar

sigh…I’ll be 40 in two years. You guys are making me feel old.

eponymoushipster's avatar

i got mistaken for a tripod once.

Dr_C's avatar

@jonsblond if it’s any consolation I’ll be 29 on the 17th!

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dr_C I’ve been 29 for almost 10 years now. ;)

Zen's avatar

I’m often mistaken for a guy.

Dr_C's avatar

@Zen Having Patrick Stewart as your avatar can have that effect…

rooeytoo's avatar

@Zen – you are a guy, check it out!

casheroo's avatar

@jonsblond Just so you know, I didn’t take it as an offense…maybe if he said I looked 40 when I’m only 23…but otherwise, it’s a compliment ;)

Aethelwine's avatar

@casheroo I know. just joking. =)

Axemusica's avatar

@Zen “I’m often mistaken for a guy.” whoaahh?

Jude's avatar

Yup, I thought Zen was a guy, as well.

Grisaille's avatar

@Zen You’re a woman? OH SHI-

casheroo's avatar

Zen IS a guy. I thought he was a she for the longest time lol

Grisaille's avatar

Someone shoot me.

Jude's avatar

Shoot me, as well.

eponymoushipster's avatar

SPANK ME! NO SPANK ME!

don’t worry, there’ll be spankings for everyone!

Allie's avatar

One time I thought Nimis was a man… and that (s)he was married to Judi. Starts here. That confused me for a while.

irocktheworld's avatar

I do try to picture the people I talk to and all the flutherers! I may be wrong and I may be right.But I know how Maura looks like! :)

Jude's avatar

<—Another who thought that Fireside was a lady.

Grisaille's avatar

seriously, fuck you people and your gender ambiguity, I’m going home

Blondesjon's avatar

@eponymoushipster . . .and then the oral sex. . .

eponymoushipster's avatar

@Blondesjon you take the guys, ill handle the girls, mmkay?

Saturated_Brain's avatar

Wait, so is Zen is guy or not?

Harp's avatar

From his profile : “Trying to be a better father than the one I had.”

Saturated_Brain's avatar

@Harp Thanks for that
@Zen You tried to mislead us! DIEE!

markyy's avatar

Of course Zen is a guy. Although a lot can happen in a month…

Axemusica's avatar

Ok just had to put this cuz it amuses me, but @filmfann I often picture speaking just like Butters, lol.

prasad's avatar

Yes, I do.
If avatar has a photo (of their own or someone other) showing face, it’s easy.
Other times, I have to imagine.
My guesses on gender and age have been, however, quite wild.

Zen's avatar

Trying to be a better cross-dresser than my father…

Zen_Again's avatar

Nope.

I don’t even look at the avatar – I know who I am talking to after a while just from their style of writing – and the nickname, of couse to back it up.

Avatars change, and so do people’s faces. But their voice (here) doesn’t.

MeinTeil's avatar

Seated at a computer.

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