18 Comments

Love this.

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Aw hey thank you! You play this game like it's almost second nature, in my eyes!

And thanks for restacking, Paul! I appreciate it.

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Loved this, Malavika! I 100% relate. Let the games begin :)

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Thank you Rachael! I had a sense you'd relate, because your essays always speak to themes that are so human, which one can only access if they're in touch with their full selves. And online feels kind of non-human when there's bad reply game. <3

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This was a delight to read, Malavika! Especially seeing some WoP friends curated :) Louie and Michelle are both very good internet citizens as well as nice people, and I've recently started following Visa as well. His threads are so dense with ideas. Since you've read his books, I'd love to see you do a curation post on him at some point as well, as it can be hard to know where to get started.

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Thank you Chris! And ditto, I'd love to see the Visa curation.

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May 25, 2023Liked by Malavika Mudit

A delightful curation! And the "key ideas" drawing just shows how much time, effort, and care went into the crafting. On top of that it's even more delightful to see Visa, Michelle, and Louie mentioned! I'm very much an IRL person but now I'm more convinced that good reply game is good life game, thanks to your essay. Maybe we should all write a reply essay to this? ;)

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May 25, 2023·edited May 25, 2023Author

Ayyeeoo Helen, what a lovely thing to say. Thank you for noticing the mindmap - there were so many amazing interlinked ideas there, that I just couldn't get into in this one! Haha, I do love mindmapping core ideas that tie up the things I think about. I have way too many of them lying around these days.

I hear you on being an IRL person having to reckon with living IVV (in virtual voids lol). I've begun to think of it as trying to be just an extension of my offline self online, just as much as I can, and with just that much energy as needed to be my offline self.

PS: I'm here for that reply essay! Now that cohort's over, I'm looking forward to also catching up with all your essays that I've missed in the past weeks!

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This is such a well-crafted & delightful essay that puts words to a lot of what I've been learning lately too. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I want to write a whole essay in reply to this essay...

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I find that everyone who's on a journey to live an embodied life always has a great approach to navigating being in the head for the online world. So I really look forward to seeing that essay! Also, wouldn't that be grand? A whole chain of reply essays playing the reply game life sized, on Substack. <3

Thanks for stopping by to read Bianca. I'm happy that some of these ideas resonated from you. For my part, I just watched and learned but I can't say the practice of it is going as well as my theoretical understanding of it!

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May 25, 2023Liked by Malavika Mudit

God damn! I haven't head an internet analysis quite this good in sometime now! Made me smile, feel inspired, a little guilty and a whole lot of wooooow!

But I do wonder what of all this says about people who have bad repy game tho? Are we selfish, introverted, scared?

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May 25, 2023·edited May 25, 2023Author

Sri! This is the essay! Hahaha as you may have gathered. :D

Thank you for reading, thank you for stopping by to comment, and for being so supportive! It means so much to me. Let's chat more in person about how you navigate the online world - I think there's a special way in which those of us who came out of Indian school are navigating something quite foreign to us in the online, caring, good reply game world. I'd love to hear your thoughts on that.

For me, I think the only way out of bad reply game is through it. It's so iterative to crack the right way to read cues, to notice one's own baggage, to leap across cultural contexts accurately, to see that your Twitter bubble and another person's Twitter bubble function differently, and that what goes around does come around but only in yours. It took me shutting down my professional avatar Twitter account to even exit some of the bad reply game play I was so conditioned by earlier! I find it unnecessary or at least somewhat useless to characterise the kind of bad some of us are. I think it's plenty if we have a desire to get good? Y'know what I mean? I'd noodle on this with you all day if I could, because I have really had all these same questions and same feelings and (my guess is) same self-doubts.

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Awesome piece, Malavika. I don’t know Visa. I know Louie from WOP and agree with all you said about his way of “playing the game”. But I know Michelle well, and she’s one of my favorite human beings. Her authenticity pours out of every single word she writes, and this is a gift that’s been given to her, but also one that she’s been giving us everyday. So, 100% (or even more) on your thoughts.

And I loved this: “Reading the room supportively has been a gamechanger for me. It’s carried me through difficult hearings, impatient courtrooms, distressed clients, coaching roadblocks, some semi-dark childhood stuff, and earned me the understanding and trust of many dogs, cats, and human-beings.”

Thank you for writing this extraordinary essay. :)

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🥹🥹🥹🥹 thank you Silvio! I'm very lucky to count you and Malavika as friends!

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Can't say anything more that hasn't been said in all these comments. Great job Malavika :)

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Excellent piece, Malavika!

Great hook, loved the mind map, the Moroccan visa story, the pick of authors you curated and what I felt was the main takeaway for me (give give give). The topic is so relatable (I just can't get myself to focus on Twitter).

Well well done on publishing!

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I love this so much 🥹 such a great synthesis of something I do but don't fully understand myself haha. It's funny because all my Twitter learnings are from Louie's mentor sessions in Write of Passage, so no surprise there's no overlap! More than anything though, I'm so happy we became friends! Whether because of Twitter, WoP, Substack or something else, I think our friendship is a testament that you can connect and build relationships with cool people on the internet.

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oh shoot I didn't even say the mind map is out of this world!!!

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