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Thread: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

  1. #1
    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Gatorade, is it in you?
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    Default Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Get ready for people here to start changing their avatar pics as soon as they read this thread.

    Firstly, this thread is NOT ABOUT DISCUSSING OTHER SPECIFIC MEMBERS ON TWC. That would violate the Terms of Service. You can of course talk about yourself all the live long day if that's what floats your boat.

    Phew! Now that that's out of the way, let's get to the rub of the matter! Do you guys think that avatar pictures (in general, not just on TWC, but on any given online forum) are psychological projections of one's true inner self? Does the avatar picture people choose in some way or another reflect an overriding aspect or chief characteristic of their true personalities in real life? Or are their avatar pictures simply idealized depictions of what they aspire to be or desire but cannot achieve in the real world?

    Why do people choose certain avatar pictures over others? What does it say when people choose avatar pictures of famous people, living, dead, or even historical? What does it say about their personal values and ethos? Are they sometimes used as pictoral messages to convey these ideas to their reading audience, prepping the reader for what he or she can expect in the content of their post? For example, does someone with a silly or goofy avatar come to various websites with the intent of providing comic relief in their posting habits? Does someone with a stern-looking well-known military figure come to various websites to engage in serious-headed discussion about concrete historical issues or current affairs? Does someone with an avatar of a renowned or infamous politician subconcsiously or consciously choose this picture as a means to unnerve debating opponents or to let readers know what sort of political ideas they favor without even saying a word?

    I'd love to hear your opinions!

  2. #2
    HannibalExMachina's Avatar Just a sausage
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    i chose ramsay because he waves a sausage and its funny, i damn well hope this doesnt tell anything profound about me

  3. #3
    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Gatorade, is it in you?
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Quote Originally Posted by HannibalExMachina View Post
    i chose ramsay because he waves a sausage and its funny, i damn well hope this doesnt tell anything profound about me
    I'll refrain entirely from speaking about you personally, but I think people generally choose scary or intimidating figures (like, for instance, Geoffrey from Game of Thrones) for their avatars in the same sort of manner that we choose scary Halloween costumes. It trivializes, lessens, and makes light of the fearsome nature of the thing or person being depicted. Choosing humorous gif avatars could also simply be a reflection of someone's desire to entertain others.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    I find it on this forum a bit less the case. But you can do it for many profile pictures.
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    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    In my case, yes. I am god's vice-regent on Earth
    Your surname doesn't have to be Komnenos, Doukas or Palaiologos, so as to join
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    Cahoma's Avatar Tribunus
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Well, my nose actually doesn't blink irl.

  7. #7
    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Gatorade, is it in you?
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyriakos View Post
    In my case, yes. I am god's vice-regent on Earth
    Orthodox God to be exact.

    I won't go into it, though, Kyriakos, but I'll just say you are quite a special case, considering the nature of your avatar.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    i categorically deny the thread's premise

  9. #9

    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cahoma View Post
    Well, my nose actually doesn't blink irl.
    That aside, everything else is just like RL Cahoma, of course.

    i would be very disapointed otherwise.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Well when you think about it, the whole point of choosing an avatar is to have something that represents you or something about you in some way, regardless of what that way may be.

    "But wait!" you say. "My avatar is just something funny/satirical/nonsensical/any adjective ever. It's not a reflection of my personality! I'm nothing like what's depicted in what I choose as my avatar!"

    Fair point - but the avatar itself is a statement about you. Having a sausage-waving psychopath may not be who you are in reality (I sincerely hope it's not) but it'd be safe to say that you know of and probably like/are amused by the character or the work that the character originates from.

    I'd actually agree that our avatars are subtle clues as to who we are behind the screen.

    I chose my own avatar because I'm a self-aware cynic who's somewhat full of himself and regularly described as arrogant (in a friendly way I swear) but humorous. A friend of mine from TWC whom I've met in real life also once called me a mix of Putin and RDJ so there's that. Also I fancy myself an adept TW player so why not look like General Downey Jr.

    I think its cool and it's totally me. I'm actually Robert Downey Jr.

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    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Gatorade, is it in you?
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Quote Originally Posted by snuggans View Post
    i categorically deny the thread's premise
    You might very well be right to do so (perhaps we do just choose random pictures), but I'd like to see you elaborate on that assertion, if you can.

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    Riverknight's Avatar Last of the Romans
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    I think its cool and it's totally me. I'm actually Robert Downey Jr.
    Have met Guy, can confirm he's RDJ.

    As for me I love to fish, so my original Bass picture I guess kinda fits me. My current picture is basically just due to me finding PC principal absolutely hilarious.

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    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Gatorade, is it in you?
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Quote Originally Posted by Riverknight View Post
    Have met Guy, can confirm he's RDJ.

    As for me I love to fish, so my original Bass picture I guess kinda fits me. My current picture is basically just due to me finding PC principal absolutely hilarious.
    Avatar pictures of authority figures, even obnoxious ones from animated shows like South Park, are to be preferred by forum moderators and for good reason: there are those who lurk on various websites who need to know that moderation staff won't take any of their gruff.

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    Niles Crane's Avatar Dux Limitis
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    I've had avatars of Livia, Dorian Gray, the Marquis de Sade, Bertie Wooster and Niles Crane. I wouldn't think there was any connection between any of them or any revealing aspect of my personality.

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    Frunk's Avatar The Duke Returns
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    I just changed my avatar, because I read this thread and felt like changing it. I've been listening to a lot of Beastie Boys lately.

    There is a story behind why I was using that black Layne Staley avatar. Truth be told, I didn't know who he was when I started using the avatar, but the admin of the first forum I ever joined (and moderated) used it, and I had this love-hate relationship with both him and that site over several years. It was a sort-of weird homage to a time in my life where I developed immensely, I guess, and I'll probably change back to it sometime.
    Last edited by Frunk; November 03, 2015 at 07:04 AM.
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    Copperknickers II's Avatar quaeri, si sapis
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    I certainly think mine is a projection of my inner William Wallace. But given that I spend very little time these days decapitating Englishmen, I don't think it tells the whole story.
    A new mobile phone tower went up in a town in the USA, and the local newspaper asked a number of people what they thought of it. Some said they noticed their cellphone reception was better. Some said they noticed the tower was affecting their health.

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    Aru's Avatar Protector Domesticus
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Quote Originally Posted by HannibalExMachina View Post
    i chose ramsay because he waves a sausage and its funny, i damn well hope this doesnt tell anything profound about me
    It does. I would never chose an avatar because he waves a sausage and it's funny. That speaks about me. Everything we say and do speaks about us in most profound ways.

    It's almost as if we're individuals shaped by what we are and do which shapes what we change into and are going to do and it all shapes others around us who also shape us and everything is connected into sticky web of shaping and influences interconnecting person to person profoundly so that even the simplest "I don't care, I just do it" ends up being a deep message about one's self even if they think they're doing exactly the opposite which makes lying one of truest statements you can make about yourself, but only so far as the lie is true because we're constantly changing and in the end everything we can say about ourselves ends up being a lie except the fact that we are constantly changing and are never what we seem to be to both ourselves and to others. That simple.


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    Iskar's Avatar Insanity with Dignity
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    I would definitely say that an avatar says something, thought usually not everything, about the person behind it. After all, internet communities are mainly about very elaborate, sometimes subtly disguised self-presentation and seeking for affirmation from others who in turn seek our own affirmation of their own representation.

    Or what Aru said.

    Considering that my avatar is Machiavelli with a party hat and horn and that I am probably a renaissance thinker gone mad that is certainly most fitting.
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    Comrade_Rory's Avatar Protector Domesticus
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    I wish my inner self was Michael Collins!

    On pretty much every other forum type thing (and Youtube and Instagram) I use Oddball as my avatar. I'd like to think Oddball was my inner self but I think it's more likely the opposite.

  20. #20
    Comes Domesticorum
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    Default Re: Psychologically speaking, is one's avatar picture a true, subconscious reflection of their inner self?

    Mine shows all the countries I've lived in...so I'd say it reflects me quite well.

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