Golly gosh. So soon already? This is not going to be yet another summary of what Stardoll life was back four years ago and what not. You can easily find out about that from last year’s anniversary post. No, I would like this celebratory post as a chance to reflect. I wouldn’t necessarily call it celebratory, I think it’s actually quite sad. The show must go on.
It seemed like it was just yesterday (cliché much?) that I was writing an anniversary post before popping off to see the second last instalment of the Harry Potter franchise. Time flies by so fast, and before you know it the last HP film has been done and dusted and now I find myself attempting to reflect of half a decade’s worth of clicking my mouse button on the worldwide web.
So a little recap, I joined Stardoll on the 21st of November 2006. I had just about turned ten years old and was still being educated in Primary School. I’m not about to dish out some irrelevant facts, but you get the picture. I still think about that day where I entered in my first password and a terrible choice for a nickname. What does that song go like again? “If I could turn back time” . . Being honest here, I was lonely and shy on Stardoll. I know that sounds very strange coming from someone who regularly posts online, but it’s true. In real life I am not the most confident of people, although I can deliver an English solo talk to my entire year if need be. I’m not that shy. I found it difficult to approach anybody on Stardoll because I thought they simply did not exist! If you log into Bebo (the social networking site), I’m sure you find it a ghost town while in comparison to Facebook or Twitter. Well that’s exactly what Stardoll was like. No clubs or commenting sections and you could only find other members (who you did not know) from visiting the Covergirl of the day. Thus, I did not know how to generally approach people and to build online friendships with strangers. I did not have the best spelling and I did not honestly care about my account. I was in it for the dress-up dolls. Sadly, nowadays, I do not find this appealing.
A handful of my real life friends have owned Stardoll accounts down the line, but they still see it as a site for juveniles who love Barbies and all things pink and fluffy. I think one or two know what I do, but they don’t care and I’m thankful for that. In fact they seem supportive and sympathise with me. I don’t see Stardoll as a bad influence or something to look down upon, but when you’re attending secondary school, rumours spread like wildfire. I learn something new about someone in our yeareveryday – and let me tell you, it’s not anything good. It’s difficult enough having to deal with their baboon-like antics and broken glass Buckfast bottles at the back of the school, they lightly tease everyone, but we all know deep inside they’re humans too – underneath all that polyester Adidas tracksuit.
My family has been very generous in funding my endeavours on this site – that being membership. I don’t even want to look at my transactions over the years and calculate the amount of pennies I have accumulated through text messages and Paypal transfers. Hopefully when I am older and have a job I can pay them back. It maybe likely to go into triple figures. All those years I have been active on this site, I haven’t spent a large amount of time without being given the Superstar privileges. I think this has largely shaped my view on Stardoll today, if not I think you’d see a very angry and unsympathetic side of Lel. In fact, I think she wouldn’t be here writing this today.
Blogging has really helped me build up my language skills in ways that you cannot imagine. I read a lot before I ventured into Stardoll, but reading does not test your writing or spelling abilities. My spelling was absolutely atrocious when I arrived on WordPress. I did not know features like spell check existed and wrote constantly in shorthand. I do not see the need of writing short hand unless you’re texting or typing in a place where there is a character limit, for example; Twitter, Stardoll Guestboook, Youtube commenting etc. Even then, if you’re nowhere near reaching the limit then there’s no need for writing lyk dis. What’s another “i”, “e” and “th” going to do? I have nothing against those who write in shorthand, but it does give the aura of an illiterate being in the real world. Blogging constantly pushes and demands writers. If it weren’t for this blog I wouldn’t have a place to vent or express my views which just need to be said. Not only has Stardoll shaped the person I am today, but this blog has a significant part of my life. It has not chronicled everything I done these past few years, but I can see my twelve year old self in that post and my fifteen year old self in this. I can read how I used to process everything and how I constantly used Stardoll themselves as a scapegoat for absolutely everything. I was blind to see what was right in front of me and significantly immature for my age.
WHENEVER I WAS ANGRY ON THIS BLOG I WOULD TYPE IN CAPITAL LETTERS FOLLOWED BY A SEQUENCE OF EXPLANATION MARKS!!!!!!!!!!! OCCASIONALLY A FEW 1’S!!!!1!1 I would blame everyone but myself for negative occurrences and constantly rattle about statistics and how things were going well, but in reality there was nothing to brag about. I was determined to make something out of this, trying far too hard, and instead of focussing on the actual content of the blog I literally spammed Animal-lovers begging members to visit my blog – which was half empty and filled with one-minute posts and a freakishly large snapshot. Nowadays view are not the end of the world and this is one of the particular reasons why I do not agree with vigorous advertising. It never got me anywhere and instead it just deterred me away from doing something with my blog. “Oh nobody is going to visit, I’m going to give up” – that was my attitude to everything because no-one paid attention to my ads or my messages. How are you supposed to take something like that, into a positive energy source? It took me literally two years to figure out that I needed to start working on my content rather than boosting the viewcount meter. Advice for anyone who owns a blog out there: Don’t look at statistics or follower count – it means nothing, to me at least.
I couldn’t be any more thankful for everything that has ever happened to me on this site – good and bad. It makes you who you are and the negatives only teach you what to be aware of in the future. That’s what life is all about. I have received some dreadful messages from the past (and present) and been involved in cyberbullying (victim and bully) and I have nothing bad about to say for those who victimised myself and others, and only good things to say about those who I intentionally victimised myself. I perhaps did not see this a month ago, but reflecting on my past, I do now.
Blogs are lethal weapons. You can use them in any way shape or form. They can be used to praise people and can be used to breakdown others. I have received possibly a sac full of death threats and suicide notes, from people who have never seen my face calling me “obese” to “ugly” and how I do not deserve a life or I should go hang myself from my garden shed to I should end my life in a dark hole – wherever that may be. I can put my hands up and say I would never say anything like this to anybody, especially online. You may not see someone’s face through that screen, but I can assure in that the person over the other side is still human. Words hurt. A lot. How can you tell I am writing this in a cynical tone or in a sympathetic one without hearing my voice? A sentence can be interpreted in two ways. Sarcasm is something that is not automatically learnt or acknowledged – trust me, it’s caused a few mistaken arguments in the past. That is one the disadvantages of “socialising” online. Also the fact the de-individualisation process in which one goes through on the internet, when we abuse the use of anonymity (Watch Derren Brown’s The Game). You believe you can say anything online and everyone will believe you, you can be whoever you want to be, say anything you want to say – but in reality it’s not true. If I say I live in Sichaun with two pandas called Jojo and Mimi – would you believe me? Of course not. IP tracing is all the rage now – if you want to lie or hurt others you need to tread carefully or else you will pay the price for your misdeeds. Best not to even think about it. I believe manners should exist online. Yes, it’s a very naive thing to say, but it won’t stop me treating others as I would to do everyone else. At least I can try.
I am even thankful for all the scammers and hacker. If it weren’t for them I’d probably would have been scammed out of more stardollars in the long term, which would have meant more of my parent’s money wasted on my addiction of virtual rares. Although the eleven year old inside of me would still like to see my Scuba and original Patchwork bag, it was for the best using hindsight. They gave me no amount of first season DKNY ever could, experience and literally stopped my addition to Stardoll. I would spend hours at a time just sitting clicking through different Starbazaars – not doing anything productive whatsoever. Losing my precious collection made me come to my senses that I could be doing something more worthwhile than constant bazaar hopping. In a sense I suppose blogging and Youtube have filled the space, in which rares were once placed in. I read into gossip blogs and really idolised those who were written about frequently – I thought that was the ideal “life” on Stardoll. Rare hunting isn’t for everybody, especially not me. It lost it sense of excitement of finding a good bargain and items have just inflated dramatically, not to mention the amount of money that is lost through scams and trading. It’s far too much pressure. I actually did not even like the design of half the items I purchased, they were only seen valuable in my eyes as they were so heavily sought after. I find it acceptable to collect brands, but not if you’re just looking for an amount of respect or a high “elite” status.
Rest will be written at a later date as I split it up into two parts, but this single post will be updated and added onto. Pictures too. Plus it is a day late. Thanks for reading, as always, it’s truly appreciated. I hope you have a lovely day/afternoon/night!