Have you ever looked at a meme or post while scrolling on facebook or instagram or whatever it is that cool kids use these days and thought “OMG, I’m not the only one!!” or “I relate to that so much!!!”. It has happened with me more than I can count. Whenever I look at these posts, I feel a sense of a community with people I don’t know. Benedict Anderson aptly describes this feeling of community by his concept of “Imagined Communities” which is basically when you share a sense of community with people through shared experiences, but it is imagined because you don’t know the people in the community.
One such community has blossomed on Facebook, through a group called “Subtle Curry Traits” on Facebook. It is a movement that was started as a desire to see a global thriving curry community where they wanted to unite and inspire subcultures through humour. So, in the group, what is mostly shared are funny memes or videos that perfectly define the experience of being a “curry”. Before going any further, curry person is basically a person who belongs to the south asian, Indian subcontinent and first/second generation curry immigrants.
This week in class we were talking about online, virtual communities and I think even online groups like this are also a part of that because they also promote and share the same feeling of community that one may get from hanging out in a ‘dungeon’ or playing ‘animal crossing’. While Subtle Curry Traits has given me a community to be a part of as an Indian but studying abroad now, as a child, my online community was ‘Club Penguin’. It was amazing to be able to hang out and play games with people from all around the world. It had different servers but you could see which servers were your friends online on. You could play games, chat with them and even visit each other’s igloos. It was a whole world of its own complete with a cafe, pizza store, arcade, ice-fishing spot, a forest, a beach and a lot more. You even had your very own igloo that you could decorate and even have pets of your own, mine were two puffles called Jimmy and Kimmy.
So yeah, this blogpost was about online communities and two of my favourite communities that I have been part of. One as a child, and one now.
Let me know in the comments which are your favourite online communities and how was your experience if you have ever been a part of one.