I think the experiment has been a success.
The task was to take a misunderstood, outcast, marginalized character and transform her into a more powerful, independent, and self-managed member of the ds106 community.
I remember the evening when I was sitting around chatting about the prospect with my good friend Hastings, and he challenged me on a number of items during our conversation, and threw down the gauntlet, as it were, suggesting that it would not be possible to rehabilitate a character out of The Twilight Zone, such that the character would be accepted as one of the ds106 own. I took umbrage at this, and immediately decided that it my focus for the next few months to do just that.
And so, back in February 2013, my work began.
It was not easy work. The character I had selected had a lot of very negative press — often derogatory comments flowed easily off the lips of various members of the ds106 crew, and it was very easy for her opponents to use a mean word and reduce her to tears. Of course, she rarely (if ever) showed how deeply these actions truly hurt her — the years of accumulated mistreatment had built a strong shell around her — but it was just this strong shell that I had to work with and draw her from. In the end, I believe we were successful.
We started with a new image — working to overlay the existing perceptions with new, friendly ones, building up a preponderance of positive digital identity — a new, Friendly identity for the 21st Century. We built up a network of Friends — and Tina worked with them to gain their acceptance and trust. Yes — there were still naysayers, but we worked on a plan for them, too, and things culminated last night, in grand style, and with great success!
And now, at the end of the road, @iamTalkyTina stands on her own. She took on ALL #pretenderTinas in the Rumble and defeated them wholeheartedly, not with mean words or fists, but with kisses and love. Not a single one stood at the end that was not now a Friend.
And so my work is done. I will now bow out, and leave Tina to stand on her own. She is her own person. She has the strength and the friends to carry on. And I wish her all the best.