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Stop the Secrecy

The Change Blog: Why you should never be afraid to participate in Internet conversations.

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 15:27 -- Eva Prkachin

Are you a dedicated Internet lurker? Here's why you should make 2015 your year to start participating online. Why not start now - let us know what you think in the comments.

Article by Peter Clemens for The Change Blog

Ok I admit it… I was an Internet lurker. By this, I mean that I was one of those people who read discussions on forums and message boards but never participated. As someone who now enjoys making a contribution on the Internet, I thought I would take a look at some lessons I have learnt.

Firstly, was there anything wrong with being a lurker? My former lurking could best be described as benign (see the Wikipedia lurker page). That is, my lack of motivation to contribute can probably be explained by feeling uncomfortable expressing my thoughts online accompanied with a touch of laziness. I was certainly never a smart-ass or perverted lurker. So in this sense, my lurking never impacted negatively upon anyone else. That said, I have learnt the following:

Lesson 1: Lurking Reflects an Mindset of Taking Without Giving

I have come to see though that lurking is reflective of a certain mindset. This is a mindset of taking without giving anything in return. Just imagine if everyone on the Internet had this attitude. There would be no content as no one would be contributing anything! The Internet is what it is today because many people feel the desire to contribute, whether it be a big way (creating a popular site) or a small way (simply leaving a comment of appreciation after an informative or enjoyable post).

- Read more at The Change Blog