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Why Gwen Put Her Life in a Fishbowl
In Her Own Words...

Gwen recently set-up her own dorm Webcam. When she contacted us, we asked her to tell us why she does it.

Gwen on her WebcamI get asked a lot why I'm doing this. The fact is I've been fascinated by the web for about six years now. I've had several different types of pages, beginning with personal and expanding to topics of my interest. I didn't just want to have a site that would sit there and gather cobwebs, I wanted to be visited, and I wanted people to know me. A webcam just became the next natural step. I don't think my life is any more exciting than anyone elses, but I think it's a world people want to look into. The dorm room of a college co-ed. In the little over a month that I've had my webcam running, I've met a lot of great people through email and my chat room. I love when people contact me to tell me that they've enjoyed my site, that's what makes it worthwhile to me. But I'm not satisfied yet, my education in graphics and programming websites is just beginning.

on the phoneI'm a senior in college. I have a Bachelor's degree already in Biology, but that didn't pan out the way I'd hoped, and so I've returned to school to study Computer Science. I'm also a Resident Assistant (RA), which puts an interesting spin on my webcam. Part of the idea to start the cam also stemmed from a quote I heard when I received the position, "An RA lives her/his life in a fishbowl". One of the roles of an RA is as an administrator. I make sure that other students are following the rules of the Residence Hall, as a result, everyone has their eye on me and whether I am following the very thing I am asking them to do. They know what I'm doing all the time. I don't find following the rules a problem, so that doesn't really inconvenience me, but I thought, what if I took this a step farther? on the moveOne of the things I have to be careful with the webcam involves my role as a counselor. Residents can also come to me with problems or concerns that they may have. From the beginning it was obvious to me that at no point would any of these students be seen on cam when they cam to me for help. So I really don't feel that the cam comprimises the importance of confidentiality in my job.

I also protect my own identity, as I feel everyone should online, even if they don't have a webcam. I don't give out my real name or the name of my college anywhere on my site. I love getting email, but I don't want a knock at my door. Something that surprises me endlessly, is all of the compliments I get online.Funny conversation Many people tell me that I'm pretty on my site, but I've never really thought of myself as exceptionally so. It's definately an ego booster. I'll do just about anything, rated G that is, upon request in my chat room. I've waved, written notes, and even done dance numbers for my visitors. I hadn't realized what a ham I am! I think my visitors would be surprised though, if they knew how shy I am around people I don't know. Among friends, I can be very outgoing, and somehow the cam takes me straight to that point. I think that's what makes the web such a great stage for me.

I'd encourage anyone that's interested in setting up a webcam to do so. I was very surprised at how easy it was to get started. The software with my cam uploaded the image for me automatically every 15 seconds, and all I had to do was build the website. And there are a lot of sites out there to help you out as well.

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** Andy Warhol once said, "In the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes." Warhol later said "I’m bored with that line. I never use it anymore. My new line is “In 15 minutes everybody will be famous."

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