I have some friends online that I have known for about 15 years now. They reside in a private forum run by my friend, Peter, who I met online that many years ago, in an interesting, but now defunct, website called The Waking World. It was a metaphysical playground of sorts, with many smart and interesting people. It was there that I also met Jorma, whom I knew for about 9 years before going to Finland to share my life with him. Goes to show you how intense an online relationship can grow to be.
And then there are those of you who leave ocmments on my blog, and vice versa. I feel a certain closeness to you all.
Back in the late 90's early 2000's, I met a few men online who I ended up dating in real life. It used to be easier on AOL to connect with people-- everyone had a profile, and you could perue them and just instant message a person out of the blue. Now there are hardly any profiles, and no way to take a look to see who's online, so it's much harder to meet someone, or be met by someone.