I don’t recall where I heard it but it was said that if you really want to find out about someone you don't ask their friends or their family, instead you look at their online activity. I wonder if the anonymity factor plays a part. You can really be yourself online because no one knows it is 'you'. However in real life you are expected to act in a certain way and do certain things that are prescribed depending on your career, religion, family life, etc. Is the online world an escape whether you are playing video games, creating avatars, chatting or simply surfing?
de Castell, S. “Mirror Images: Avatar Aesthetics & Self-Representation in Digital Games.” DIY Citizenship. Pp 213-221.