Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Geek Awkwardness - It's All in the Context

Here are some definitions I found of the word geek from the magically wise Intertubes:

"part of what makes someone a geek/nerd is having poor social skills..."*

"It's kind of the defining characteristic - being into a particular thing to the exclusion of social intercourse."*

"a peculiar or otherwise dislikable person, especially one who is perceived to be overly intellectual."**

"The people you pick on in high school and wind up working for as an adult"***

The cliche of the socially awkward gamer is well known and old by now. In my own experiences with geeks (which is quite a bit) some of the stereotypes are truer than others for some people and not so for others. In my experiences with "normal" people or non-geeks, however, it is the same. Some people are just socially awkward and others are not. Is there a higher proportion of this phenomenon with geeks? Maybe, but maybe not. The issue is really about context.