I’ve spent so much time communicating with people in locations with internet restrictions and online security issues, it’s caused me to develop a personal insecurity, so that I panic a little when online conversations end unexpectedly. For a moment, I forget that most of the time there is a perfectly rational explanation.. a technical issue, a personal emergency, a mundane interruption. In those moments, an array of increasingly dire circumstances flashes through my mind: arrest, injury, having to flee the scene. Worse.
Our strict protocol of using aliases deprives us of certainty. The uncertainty fuels us with urgency. We are stronger, more resilient, and we get things done, because we have learned to work in virtual isolation. Reunions, re-connections, are often joyful occasions, but the never-knowing permeates everything, framing snapshots of snatched conversations with shadowed corners.
At other times, I am viewing gruesome videos of bloodshed and brutality, carnage and casualties, many…
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