Doppelgänger Neighborhoods

Digital   says digital means programmed. In the world of fake news and bots, perhaps that’s true for some of us.

More Than That

I see it differently. No, I live it differently.

I began the journey in 2009, and by 2013 I understood that I could visit many different neighborhoods, online and off. In my blog post back then, “Best Connectedness Video,” I shared a presentation and video of Seven Degrees of Connectedness by Rodd Lucier @thecleversheep  

Time and space no longer hold us back from connecting with people.

At this time many people became friends in #etmooc [Ed Tech Massive Open Online Course by Alec Couros], and we just had our fifth reunion where many of us visited in a Google Hangout or tweeted good wishes. Friends across time and space. We’ll be meeting again in March to plan for future projects.

That summer, more people would connect in #clmooc then hosted by Educator Innovator and powered by the National Writing Project. Many of these people also remain connected, and in 2016, volunteers continued the summer “Make Cycle” tradition by planning and implementing Make Cycles, open to any one. An ongoing favorite is the Postcard Project [you’re welcome to join].

Both groups share in hashtags on Twitter and have ongoing conversations and sharing as friends… across the universe.


Another friend who is always refining and developing online learning and pedagogy is Ben Wilkoff. In our #etmooc conversations, we developed the idea of neighborhoods, and Ben gathered us into the Fellowship of the Open Spokes vlogging educators,where we connected through video blogging [oh that was scary] for three years.

Doppelganger Neighborhoods

Consider this: in your real life, you visit the gym, for yourself or to watch or participate in a game. You see and visit other people in that part of your life.

You go to work — and there, another neighborhood of sorts — you see and visit and work with others, who may see you in a different way.

And then you meet friends for lunch — and these people know you in another way.

And family.

And strangers.

Each neighborhood allows you access to the sharing and friendship and actions of your choice, in your way, and that way may be slightly different in each venue.

And online we also visit neighborhoods where we interact, connect, and befriend others in reciprocal connections. Each bit of sharing stays; each bit of caring shows; each bit of helping shines in an online path of your story. Each bit is part of you, not all of you. Each bit, each interaction, a small chapter of an ongoing life story.

Online or offline, we leave traces of ourselves, our doppleganger in many neighborhoods of our lives– our journey; our story.

That’s what digital means to me.

Back in 2013 in that “Best Connectedness Video post,” I created a Thinglink — an image with links included of my personal learning neighborhood, with links to ways for others to start building their own. I include it here, with all links working.

The image I painted on my computer in a drawing app, painting dots or spots to emphasize the idea that in each of our neighborhoods, we have friends that connect to parts of ourselves:

Friendship is almost always the union of a part of one mind with the part of another; people are friends in spots. ~ George Santayana

Keep your spirit kind; save the internet in your neighborhoods

No matter how many bots and fakes try to grab our world — try to program us — online or offline– we must keep our spirits safe and kind.


How will you build and manage and protect your personal learning neighborhood [PLN] ?

Images by Sheri

screenshot from

screenshot of ETmooc hangout


Doppleganger Neighborhood on Flickr

Connect Kindly on Flickr