Friday, 18 April 2008

Janus? For Real?

A little while ago a friend of mine wrote a piece about who he was offline compared to his personality on sites like YouTube. According to him, he was much quieter at school but in other situations, such as amongst friends or online, he was loud and outgoing.

The question of identity and whether you're being true to yourself is something that confronts all vloggers at some stage. I don't care who you are. I see it happen on YouTube all the time. It's usually the stage where people get disillusioned and think about leaving.

Online I am loud, (hopefully) funny, silly, 'random' - essentially I'm what they call an extrovert. Offline I can be really quiet, particularly in large groups, but on my own I'm an absolute insane asylum. People on the internet say that a lot, but I'm dead serious. I talk to myself in voices and giggle incoherently. I catch myself at it and it's absolutely bizarre. Besides the bits of that babble that find their way into my videos, I think the only people who ever see that part of me in action are my parents.

Even though there are these 'sides' to me, I don' t feel like a Janus. That's just who I am. The quiet, awkward Rohan at church who sits on the edge of other people's conversations is the same as RoboFillet on YouTube or at a gathering.

I had a guy in Darwin discover my videos and he said "I didn't even know you were like that!" At first I didn't know what he was talking about. I hadn't been checking myself when I was hanging around him or anything. It's all me, but I guess some people can't see past their initial reaction towards someone.

My personality doesn't have faces - it is a spectrum; and I think this is true for everybody. Random Chicken and Black Duck aren't just for laughs you know. People are too complicated to be boxed as 'this kind of person' or 'that kind of person' and I don't think that they're being dishonest when they don't always act the same all the time in every situation. Sure there are some people who intentionally act differently and do the faces thing. That sucks. Totally sucks. But that's not what I'm talking about here.

People shouldn't be made to feel bad if it turns out they're different amongst different people. To be honest, I know this happens to everyone anyway; one way of acting for our close friends, another for our acquaintances. Society demands it! This is just a flow-on from that, so don't worry. Just be comfortable.

Be yourself


  1. This was a really good blog rohan, i haven't been reading many vlogs while in the BH unless people specifically demand i read them, but I saw the name and had to come look, i think your right about the whole spectrum thing, atleast for some people anyway.

    I'm sure your friend feels better after reading this blog post. :)

  2. Ah, Janus strikes again.

    You make valid points. I think if human beings were completely congruent all of the time, we'd all be two dimensional parodies of ourselves.

    Who I am in one situation isn't the same as who I am in another... but that's true of a lot of things. I don't feel like the same person I was even a month ago. I like to think we're all evolving and changing and morphing.

  3. Umm. I know that feeling. Good read. Really enjoyed it. Should be a video.