IRL, do we introduce other MeFites as friends, acquaintances, or what? April 9, 2005 3:10 PM   Subscribe

I was out at Jillian's in Boston yesterday, and I saw another MeFite there who I recognized from a previous MeFi meetup. Thing is, I didn't remember her real name, and I'm not sure that she'd remember mine. Should I have said hi, and if so, what would be the rules on having friends of MeFites meet each other? Do we introduce other MeFites as friends, acquaintances, or what?
posted by sachinag to Etiquette/Policy at 3:10 PM (45 comments total)

Creepy.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 3:19 PM on April 9, 2005


If any mefites run into me with my Real Friends, please avoid all signs of recognition. I wouldn't want people to think I associate with you rabble.
posted by CunningLinguist at 3:29 PM on April 9, 2005


Creepy.

Very creepy.
posted by Kwantsar at 3:34 PM on April 9, 2005


There is no such thing as girls on the internet: It was a guy in drag.
posted by naxosaxur at 3:37 PM on April 9, 2005


"Stalkee" is the preferred nomenclature.
posted by IshmaelGraves at 3:39 PM on April 9, 2005


why is this creepy? you meet someone once (at a meetup, or wherever) and then again later, but can't remember their name. happens to me a lot (being useless with names). i just say "hi, i met you at blah blah. how's things?" and, if the conversation continues, "sorry, i'm useless, what was your name again?".

and if you've already met them, and you like them, they're a friend. if you didn't like them, ignore them.

this seems too simple. am i missing something?
posted by andrew cooke at 3:41 PM on April 9, 2005


it's not creepy at all. why not just do like andrew says?
posted by amberglow at 4:00 PM on April 9, 2005


I concur, knowing someone from a meetup IS knowing them in real life, it's just that you mostly know them online. I usually will say "Hey, we met at the meetup, my name is jessamyn, you might know me better as jessamyn" [well, try this with your actual handle/name combo]. My only problem in these situations is that the person will often say "Oh hey my name is Bob" or whatever and I'll make myself nuts trying to remember what their Mefi name is. Unless the person you saw seemed like she was on some sort of a one-on-one hot date, I think saying hi is totally fine.
posted by jessamyn at 4:10 PM on April 9, 2005


I'll fourth andrew cooke. And back in the days when I was still uncomfortable admitting I met most of my friends online, I'd say we had mutual friends. Which is true, if not exactly forthcoming.
posted by cali at 4:14 PM on April 9, 2005


What is this, Lain?
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 4:50 PM on April 9, 2005


What is this, Lain?
we are on the wired.
posted by juv3nal at 5:06 PM on April 9, 2005


Best answer goes to andrew cooke. cali, the "mutual friends" line is good - I just thought of "met at a party". I think I'll use that going forward - MeFi is fun!
And, to defend myself, because I do think some people were genuinely weirded out, I was out with a group of friends, she was out with a group of friends, and in the end I didn't say squat. No clue how you get from there to creepy/stalker boy.

posted by sachinag at 5:16 PM on April 9, 2005


At the last meetup I attended, when fellow MeFites failed to recall my RL name after having met at a previous gathering, they just chose to re-name me Beatrice. Therefore, I think all MeFites in similar situations should do the same & call each other Beatrice until corrected with a preferred appellation.

In terms of the etiquette, you would have been correct to re-introduce yourself or not, as you pleased-- unless you entered into a furtive-staring contest from across the room at each other, in which case it would be more polite to just approach instead of letting her wonder where she knows you from. Then, if she re-introduces herself as Beatrice, don't attempt further introductions among present acquaintances, as this will be code between the two of you to keep RL names within the MeFite family, as it were.
posted by obloquy at 5:48 PM on April 9, 2005


I still don't remember your RL name, Beatrice. You can call me that, too, if it makes you feel any better.

I'm Spartacus, and so is my wife!
posted by DaShiv at 6:22 PM on April 9, 2005


There is no such thing as girls on the internet: It was a guy in drag.

sachinag - as a fellow Bostonian - and a gay one at that - I can assure you it wasn't me in drag!

I was at Loews Boston Common watching "Fever Pitch"

Oh - the coincidence of Jillian's standing in the shadow of Fenway Park - featured so prominently in the movie!
posted by ericb at 6:35 PM on April 9, 2005


Creepy?! Well, then, call me a creep because I'd have done as andrew and jessamyn suggested.
posted by deborah at 6:43 PM on April 9, 2005


Jillian's

Oh, so close, but so far away!
posted by ericb at 6:49 PM on April 9, 2005


A fellow mefite occasionally drinks at my local bar. I called out his user name, and he froze for a moment until he turned and saw me. Perhaps he was wondering if he should click something. I've been greeted by fellow mefites the same way on the street. Think of it like a secret handshake.
posted by jonmc at 7:11 PM on April 9, 2005


metafilter anonymous.
posted by quonsar at 7:47 PM on April 9, 2005


I've been greeted by fellow mefites the same way on the street.

metafilter celebrity.
posted by mlis at 8:27 PM on April 9, 2005


you want my autograph?

quite frankly I'm surprised that when I wear my jonmc MeFi baseball jersey, that no passerby has ever hauled off and hit me.
posted by jonmc at 8:43 PM on April 9, 2005


I have to say I would be strangely pleased to hear someone call me by my handle in a public place, emphasis on strangely. Though it is a bit of a tongue-stumbler there in the middle.
posted by odinsdream at 8:59 PM on April 9, 2005


I've been greeted by my handle by people who never heard of mefi. I have no idea why.
posted by NickDouglas at 9:16 PM on April 9, 2005


I just ordered a MeFi T-shirt the other day, and although I was tempted to get the jersey with my name and number on the back, I decided I would be quite freaked out in the (admittedly unlikely) event that I got approached by a stranger who knows who Orange Swan is. Whereas I would be fine with being approached by someone familiar with MeFi, and I wouldn't have to identify myself unless I wanted to.
posted by orange swan at 10:24 PM on April 9, 2005


I prefer people who know me from the web to greet me by my handle the first time we meet else I'll be searching my brain for when we might know each other from IRL and that just gets akward. This usually works.
So sachinag, since you didn't remember her name you could have said "Hi [mefiname], we met at X meetup. I'm [mefiname] also known as [real name]." like jessamyn said.
posted by dabitch at 1:13 AM on April 10, 2005


The first rule of MetaFilter is never talk about MetaFilter.
posted by squirrel at 1:16 AM on April 10, 2005


Some people offline do call me by my online name. I happen to like it, but hearing it for the first time out loud was a strange sensation!

I think the only reason this is any kind of issue at all is because some people want to be very anonymous, while others are fully integrated in terms of online/offine personae. For example, if you knew someone only by phone conversations because you spoke with them regularly as a part of your work, then finally met them at a Christmas party, you wouldn't feel at all odd about saying hello if you ran into them somewhere else at a later date (I'm assuming). But the whole "no one knows you're a dog" and "screen handle" aspect of the internet introduces doubt about proper real life etiquette.

I figure if someone attends a meetup, it means they don't mind being connected to their site identity, or if they publish a picture of themselves on their site or profile page, it means they won't mind being recognized. If they do, then they are just silly, in which case you put on your wizard hat and robe and zap them.
posted by taz at 1:53 AM on April 10, 2005


I find it almost impossible to remember peoples RL names after MeFi meetups. It's like the name field for that individual has already been filled in, and as its a Primary Key I'm not allowed to change it. Deeply weird.

However, my UN is both a RL nickname and contains my real name. So I'm unlikely to forget what I'm called.
posted by seanyboy at 1:58 AM on April 10, 2005


Seeing pictures from meetups helps me bridge the gap between pure BBS anonymity and knowing someone in the real world. When I read jonmc, for example, I see him in my head the same way that I would if I were reading an e-mail from a co-worker. Yet, if I were to see him on the street, we might both be surprised at how strange it is to be relating in person. That would last about three scotches, I reckon.
posted by squirrel at 2:53 AM on April 10, 2005


If anyone approaches me on the streets of Boston and says "Hey, Mayor Curley!" I will play dumb and you will look like you have a bad grasp of history.
posted by Mayor Curley at 6:02 AM on April 10, 2005


You mean... you're not the mayor of Boston?

*world crumbles*
posted by languagehat at 6:32 AM on April 10, 2005



No, you must have me mistaken for someone, ah, else.
posted by sachinag at 9:50 AM on April 10, 2005


you want my autograph?

No, no - your playlist was good enough! :)
posted by mlis at 10:36 AM on April 10, 2005


I just ordered a MeFi T-shirt the other day, and although I was tempted to get the jersey with my name and number on the back, I decided I would be quite freaked out in the (admittedly unlikely) event that I got approached by a stranger who knows who Orange Swan is. Whereas I would be fine with being approached by someone familiar with MeFi, and I wouldn't have to identify myself unless I wanted to.

That's one of the reasons I bought the sweatshirt instead. I've worn it several times and have yet to have anyone ask me (Ha! I kill myself!) about MetaFilter.
posted by deborah at 1:20 PM on April 10, 2005


Some time ago I was sent, as a very generous and wonderful gift, two nifty metafilter pins by someone on the other coast (I regret greatly that I've forgotten who). I wear them on my coat all winter long, but although many people ask about them, no one has ever said "hey! Metafilter!"

*sigh*
posted by anastasiav at 2:38 PM on April 10, 2005


That might have been me at Jillians. I was there with robocop is bleeding and a bunch of friends Friday night. By the time we were at Jillians, we had drank enough that we could barely remember our own names.

For the record, I'd be totally fine for someone from the Internets to talk to me, if they didn't mind a blank stare of unrecognition when they first say hi. I barely recognize my own friends when I pass them on the street.

*sniff* My first MeTa callout!
posted by banjo_and_the_pork at 4:26 PM on April 10, 2005


nanosaxur: There is no such thing as girls on the internet: It was a guy in drag.

Welcome to our horrible, horrible secret.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 4:29 PM on April 10, 2005


I've been recognized many, many times in real life, by members of another online community.

Same disclaimer as banjo and the pork... feel free to say hello, but don't be surprised if I confusedly ask who you are.
posted by mosch at 7:24 PM on April 10, 2005


There is no spoon.
posted by shoepal at 10:17 PM on April 10, 2005


"Hi... Excuse me. Do you by chance know Matt Haughey?"
posted by chicobangs at 10:20 PM on April 10, 2005


What is this, Lain?

They're only cereal experiments if you catch them at a breakfast bar.
posted by Ryvar at 12:28 AM on April 11, 2005


"Hi... Excuse me. Do you by chance know Matt Haughey?" - chicobangs

This is a clever introduction line. It'd be interesting to see if we could all pronounce it correctly (hint: read his userpage).

Of course, the chance of me ever getting to use this line is slim to none, as I've only discovered one other MeFite who lives in my city, and I've never seen a pic of him. The funny thing is, though, he might be someone I've already met or would recognize from a completley different place and I'd never know it.

Along those lines, wasn't there some from the SF Bay area, that met somebody at a IIRC Berkley meetup that was actually a friend of their roomate? Or something like that, the details escape me, and I can't figure how to search that one without the pertinent details. It struck me as a really neat bit of synchronicity when I read it.
posted by raedyn at 10:24 AM on April 11, 2005


I went to a meetup to find another mefite had brought along one of my coworkers...
All sing: It's a small world after all....
posted by CunningLinguist at 1:16 PM on April 11, 2005


"I went to a meetup to find another mefite had brought along one of my coworkers..."

And there's my story about the couple that are longtime aquaintances of mine, more FsOAF really, that I knew were pregnant but not when she was due and read a FPP here where later in the comments the father said was due in couple of days and I look at the username and it's the name of the guy I know and then a couple of days later my friend (referenced in the OAF) mentioned the couple and I said, yeah, their baby is due in two weeks, I read it on MeFi.

How come I can't tell that story in a brief, non-awkward manner? And how come it isn't as amusing to anyone else as it is to me? I mean, c'mon, what are the odds?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:24 PM on April 11, 2005


Oh, so close, but so far away!

Good grief, tell me Boston has more greenery than that.
posted by small_ruminant at 11:20 PM on April 11, 2005


« Older Best answer undo   |   Frasermoo wedding on BBC. Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments