Dear Ms. Baym,
Before I read your chapter 5, I read the title "New relationships, new selves" and I already predicted the chapter was going to be interesting because I know that people change themselves to fit the ideal self so that a potential partner would find them interesting and attractive. You said "the internet has brought to all of its users the possibility of forming relationships that transcend space," meaning that users online have the ability to form relationships with so many different people because a lot of people use the internet. There are billions of people in the world that people can connect to which gives users the option to make up their identity and self presentation online. I would like to include that your theme coincides with Ellison et. al when they said "research suggests that when individuals
expect to meet a potential dating partner for the first time, they
will alter their self-presentational behavior in accordance with the
values desired by the prospective date." Like I said earlier, people will change themselves to meet an expectation of a person they meet if they see a potential in the future. People changing themselves to fit an expectation goes against what you mentioned saying that people like to reduce uncertainty when they meet a person online. If people are changing themselves, then there really isn't a reduced uncertainty because it is false information being presented. With reduced uncertainty, intimate relationships are likely to form because there will be a reciprocity of information being exchanged. Like Ellison et. al said, "through a dynamic process whereby an individual
discloses personal information, thoughts, and feelings to a partner;
receives a response from the partner; and interprets that response
as understanding, validating, and caring" it is concluded that when individuals exchange information with one another, they are reducing uncertainty which gives them the option to paint a picture of the other person's self presentation. Both your information and Ellison et. al went hand in hand and I learned a great deal of information in your chapters.