A long time ago in an Internet culture far, far from where we are now, it was normal to use a handle online. As the founder of a Macintosh enthusiast webzine (remember those?), I was known as MacDiva. People liked the name: It was catchy, meaningful and easy to remember.
In 2007, like many of you, I discovered Twitter. That same year, I joined the Online News Association conference planning committee with the intention of sharing what was happening with as many people as possible, even if they couldn’t be there in person.
At the time, I couldn’t post to the conference website; that was reserved as the showcase for the student newsroom. I couldn’t post to the ONA website; that would have presented problems of its own. So I turned to Twitter, created @MacDivaONA and began recording what I saw.
I’ve been involved with the ONA conference planning board ever since, experimenting with different ways of bringing a virtual version of the annual event to anyone who wants to be a part of it.
The conference isn’t the only time I use Twitter, though, and ONA isn’t the only organization I’m actively involved with. And as Jennifer 8. Lee recently pointed out, people who don’t know my IRL name often do know me as MacDiva — though they don’t always remember the ONA ending.
So now that there’s a brief lull between journalism and technical events, I’m simplifying — for all of our sakes: On Twitter, I’m now @MacDiva.