Pretty much all of my research for this fic has pointed towards that definitely not being the case! Certainly amongst such users that were online in the early 90s, America had the biggest demographic by far. In true online forums fashion, I chimed in on a discussion in progress having only heard the most recent comment. “But there were quite a few people on BBSes.”
My contribution was met by general silence, blank looks and a couple of “What?”s. I looked from one person to the next, wondering if I hadn’t spoken clearly enough. It was only when one guy in the corner explained, “Bulletin Board Systems” that I realised most people just didn’t know what a BBS was. I gave a brief and flustered explanation of how dialling into a BBS worked and how people used them to communicate in the early days of Internet.
“Huh,” said someone else.
After that we concluded that maybe BBSes had been popular amongst computer hobbyists but not so much the general public at large, and the conversation changed topic. I was a bit disappointed not to be able to share more of my findings about the early Internet, but to be fair, we probably would have been there all night otherwise.
Anyone else ever had this experience? Forgotten that not everyone has spent hours trawling academic articles for information about synaesthesia – or waxed lyrical about the properties of gemstones only to trail off and find your friends looking at you funny?
If so, I feel your pain. x3