I recently discovered that there are over 750 authors here on Groupthink. No, not 750 authors ever, I mean 750-plus authors now. That, my giant hivemind, is a lot of friends.

And lurkers, hi lurkers!

That new information, plus some comments I recently observed, got me thinking: do we actually know each other on here?

I think we do, and I consider us friends... of a sort. Probably in part because I don't use Groupthink the way I use other parts of the internet. I don't come here for news, or for stories, or for DIY crafts or recipes or any thing in particular — though I get all those things here. I come to Groupthink for the people. I think that, that pattern of connections, is what makes me consider you my internet friends.

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Which is not to say I assume if I met any of you in meatland we'd hit it right off. We might not, I know that — I'm a realist. I've been on the intertubes long enough to have learned not to trust the dudes I met in chat rooms or the online BFFs I met via webrings, and those lessons have stuck with me. Even still, I assume most of you are like me on here, which is honest. I am really, really honest. Probably too honest (it's part of why I treasure Kinja's almost-anonymity).

I know this isn't the first time this subject has been brought up on Groupthink — we've had the discussions about "what do we call each other?" before. But what I'm talking about is a little different: how do you feel about the people on here? You know how I feel, I feel like I know you. Maybe not all of you, or each of you, but come on, do any of us know anyone that well? We all have our secrets. There are varying and fluid degrees of trust in all relationships.

I feel like there are parts of me — and I'm not even an especially prolific author in our little world — that Groupthink knows much better than my "real life" friends. I feel that there are parts of me that no one knows except that one friend from 8th grade, for that matter. I think it's all valid... but I'm curious what you all think. Do we know each other, and if so, why?

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ETA: Slay just corrected me that it's now 723 authors, 750 is rounding up pretty significantly. But you get the idea!

*photo ripped from the Jennsylvania blog, after being discovered in a google search for "internet clique."