I think using avatar does not necessarily mean to conceal the identity. Rather it could be a way to select an image or pictogram that reflects the best of you. It could be a flower or a cartoon or a caricature. Furthermore, One thing I have noticed that almost every member have his/her actual picture in the profile and only some selected avatar.
This is the best possible logic that comes into my mind
Nasiraa - What a great question. I know that I change my avatar. Currently it is a picture of me - but before this it was a pop-art treatment of a picture of me and before that I had a number of different avatars that I created from the various sites shared in the - Avatar sites discussion. For me I was trying to make avatars - from those that you can choose how you want to look - to those that allow you to create an avatar from an actual image. I do know that my avatar's are much easier to see than my image- and that is because they are created to display in the small space.
I also have used avatar's that represent things that I like - such as a soccer ball or flower - because I am sharing a bit about myself without saying anything.
So for me my avatar is who I am and what I feel like sharing - so for some users I do think an avatar has a meaning as it is somthing that represents them. I also know that there are other uses that just choose a random item - or leave it as the system default and for those users- although the avatar is throughout the community it doesn't have any meaning to them, or it just isn't a priority.
I think having an avatar is a "fun" way of expressing yourself. Really, who doesn't want to see how they'd look as a cartoon. I guess for some who do not like to have their real photos showing, it is an alternative but for most its entertainment or another way of portrating themselves.
I like to mix it up and use both photos and avatars like Julia but I think sometimes we learn about avatars and then create them in sites and then what do we do with them...there not much else to do but use them in forums. I also know that my students google me ALL the time so I like the avatars on very public sites cause then they are less likely to do something "crazy" to an avatar than a pic of me. You never know what can get reposted.
Dear Madam Nasira,
What a great question indeed.
I also like to use different avatars. but on this educational site i have not used any avatar uptill now, and now I will upload one.
I think avatars are a form of identification.often people uses their pics and often they use other images. The use of other images as avatars can have some reasons, at times it is to depict one's mood or style.
Madam I would like to thank you for being a mentor and a guide for all the participant trainers and master trainers. we all learn alot from you.