Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle of the online D&D community

Well, I’ve gone and ruined things now, haven’t I?

On Wednesday, I put up a post musing about the online D&D community and the fact that I didn’t exactly feel like I was a part of it. This was partly because I got to meet several well-known D&D bloggers and podcasters at GenCon, and they had no idea who I was.

I concluded that I needed to do a better job of reaching out to the community.

Apparently this topic touched a nerve with other people like me – bloggers and online community members on the fringes of the group. Adam Page (@blindgeekuk on Twitter) asked if he could put up a guest post here on Online Dungeon Master on the same topic (my first ever guest post), which went up on Friday. More commentary followed, including on Twitter (where Adam is much more active than I am, and he did a great job of drawing attention to the post).

Now here’s where the uncertainty principle comes in. One way Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle is sometimes phrased is that you can’t observe something without changing it. In this case, I observed that I felt that I was a bit on the outside of the online D&D community looking in. In the process of discussing this phenomenon, I inadvertently changed it.

By the end of the day Friday, I had a guest post on my blog, lots of blog comments, and some new Twitter followers. This started with @NewbieDM, whom I’d exchanged messages with before on Twitter but who hadn’t actually followed me back. Then Adam’s tweets ended up getting @ThadeousC to both follow me on Twitter and comment here on the blog. Finally, I got a message telling me that @SarahDarkmagic herself was now following me on Twitter.

What is the world coming to? 🙂

Honestly, I didn’t put up my original post as a way to fish for attention or to convince people to follow me; I was just trying to share my thoughts. Apparently I’m not alone in feeling like an outsider, and after all of the discussion in the last few days I actually feel like less of an outsider.

In any case, if there any podcasters out there who want to talk about this as a future topic, I’m happy to join the conversation – and clearly lots of others are as well.

As always, you can find me on Twitter as @OnlineDM1 or on Skype as OnlineDM. And I’m certainly open to the idea of more guest posts here on Online Dungeon Master in the future.

Thank you for reading!

2 thoughts on “Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle of the online D&D community

  1. I am more than a little behind and trying to get caught up on twitter and blog topics. Worst yet I am going backwards from most recent so I haven’t even had a chance to read the guest post you speak of here.

    But I just want to say that you were one of the first fellow bloggers to actually interact with me from comments on your blog posts here. I didn’t originally realize you were on twitter until just a couple of weeks ago and began to follow you. Of course I was delighted when you returned the follow. Honestly I never expect anyone else to follow me just because I follow them. If I talk or cover topics someone is interested by all means I hope they follow either my blog or my twitter feed. If not, I certainly don’t want to fill up their feeds with things they may not be interested in either.

    We are all a part of this community but we also have various views and interests within the community. I hope your work continues to grow in popularity because you really do put our quality topics my friend!

    Keep up the great work!

    • Thank you, Chad – that’s really nice to hear! And as I mentioned in this post, I actually do feel more like a part of the community now. It’s odd that talking about feeling like an outsider ended up making me feel like less of an outsider, but life’s funny like that sometimes.

      And naturally, when someone says something kind to me, I’m going to follow them on Twitter! There’s a tip for folks: If you want people to follow you, say nice things to them. It worked for @cfallsgamer!

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