At 3 years of age, you have yet to understand the extent of the online presence you may have.
3 days after you were born, I saw fit to provide you with the Holy Trinity of the Web 2.0 world of my time; I decided to register a Google account under your name, create a Facebook profile and even a Twitter account for you.
When you turned 3, I decided to register a domain name for your birthday present, and xander.sg was booked in your honour (as is xndr.sg, in case you wanted to be lazy). That is also essentially how Dear Xander came to be.
Recently, I went one step further to do up a Facebook page for Dear Xander, so as to properly differentiate the network of readers with your own social network of people you’ve met and know.
But why would I do all this?
Some people may wonder if this is merely an act of parental vanity, or a father’s means of commoditizing your life. But I did all this for a few very practical reasons.
While the Google account was primarily set up to reserve a proper e-mail account for your mother and I to receive information directly related to you, just about everything else was created to ensure .
Your Facebook profile was created so you may have a reference point for listing and looking up the people you’ve met and got to know pretty much your entire life.
Your Twitter account, though rarely used, may provide you with a more efficient way to keep you updated with – as well as for you to update – the world.
Your domain name was in large part to provide you with a more traditional (Web 1.0) online identity for you to use as you wished when you grow up; create an online portfolio if you decide on pursuing a creative career, provide information on yourself or what you do on the public domain if you so wish, or just put up anything you want for personal interest. As far as the world wide web is concerned, the possibilities are quite endless.
This blog was set up to make sure both you and I remember how we grew up together as father and son. It was meant for you to remember how much I love you, and for me to remember how proud and happy you made me.
And the Facebook page tied to this blog is for you to hopefully see one day that you are not alone, that you have not only the love of your parents, but the love of a whole community of people spread all around you – some whom you know, and some whom you don’t – all brought together by reading about you and the things you learned, did and achieved.
As well-intentioned as all this may be, however, I do realise that as with all things, the permanence of these online entities is not assured by any means. Twitter may go offline, Facebook may fail as an outdated business model and Google might shut down, and then this letter may not even make sense 10, or even 5 years down the road.
But if the status quo may be sustained for the duration of your entry into adolescence or adulthood, I am going to try and keep all this online stuff of yours alive and running until you find out about it (which I have no doubt you will very quickly, looking at the amount of attention your name has been drawing online).
I’ve hopefully set you up well for you to begin living your life. Soon, I will need your help to set me up for the end of mine; I’m planning out my will to be placed in one of these letters to you.