Community Spotlight: Lilani

Community Spotlight: Lilani

20ha3kj

It takes a special something to keep a cool head when debating with people on the internet. It doesn't matter who you are - the situation will come up where something is said that angers you, and you will feel the urge to yell or curse at the individual who said it. Just look at Facebook or YouTube comments if you want some examples.

Lilani is someone who has become relatively well-known on The Escapist's forums for doing just this. She is someone whom you can debate and walk away feeling like you learned something. While her opinions can sometimes enrage others, they're presented in detail and without insulting others, a skill from which many people could learn a thing or two. The Religion and Politics section is where Escapist users go to debate, and while it was a section once thought to harbor some nasty conversations, users like Lilani have helped rejuvenate it and turned it into a friendlier place.

But it wasn't always this way. Lilani doesn't have a clean record, something she addresses later on, and if one wanted to, her on-forums story could be framed as one of redemption, or at least of learning - perhaps even as a testament to moderation, or just of empathy. How one shows themselves on the forum doesn't always correlate to how they actual feel; it's all about presentation, and taking a step back before clicking "post."

Lilani was nominated by several Escapist users for these reasons. You wanted to know more about her, so here we go.

How long have you been a member of The Escapist, and what about the site brought you here?

I became a member of the Escapist forums in 2009 which was just as I was graduating high school, but I'd been a longtime lurker before then brought to the site by Zero Punctuation. I stayed around because I became addicted to the community. I also enjoyed Extra Credits and MovieBob while they were here, but after a while my attachment to the community and forums became separate from my attachment to the content the site produces. I still enjoy the content, but I don't think there's any contributor that could come or go which would make me abandon the community at this point.

We really don't know a whole lot about you. Apart from The Escapist and video games, what are some of your hobbies?

I went to college for computer animation and now have a job in motion graphics, and I've always had a great attachment to Disney stuff. My dad was a part of the Disney Vacation Club so we were able to go to Disney World in Florida many times. And in 2010 I actually worked there as a part of the Disney College Program.

I enjoy animating, not a lot of 3D stuff at this point but I'm working on that. I took a graphic design class in high school so a lot of my stuff has to do with logos or typography. I've kind of become the go-to person for my family and friends when they need a logo or business card, lol.

What do you do for a living?

I work in the video department of a sporting goods retail chain here in the US. I do motion graphics and some special effects for them. I was really lucky to get the job straight out of college, but I don't have the complete skill set they desire so it's sort of a temporary thing if they find the ideal person before I can develop the skills they want. But I've been there over a year now, so even if they tell me tomorrow I've got to be gone in four weeks I've gotten a lot out of it.

You were nominated for the Community Spotlight at least in part because of your ability to maintain your cool during discussions and disagreements on the forums. Given how difficult that seems for some people, how do you maintain such a cool and calm demeanor?

I'm not sure how I feel answering this question, because in many ways I feel like I don't maintain my cool. I get a bit spiteful and snippy at times, or at least I feel I do, which I really don't like to see come out in me. It has taken a few warnings and probations for me to learn exactly where the line is between attacking an opinion and attacking a person. To be perfectly honest, this is still something I struggle with to this day.

What tips would you give for those who might not be able to do the same?

If I feel I'm getting too personally invested in an argument, I try to step back and remember that's a person too. A few times I've tried to back out of an intense conversation with levity, making a friendly joke or adding some emoticons to show I'm not completely serious. This has lead to me making a few strong friends here who, in spite of our disagreements, still greatly respect one another.

That doesn't mean you can always make friends with everybody you disagree with on the Internet, but I think in general the best way to approach someone you disagree with is with curiosity and a desire to understand, rather than hostility and a desire to change. Nobody responds well to someone trying to change them, but many will respond to a different point of view being put before them for them to explore in their own way.

Where do you see yourself in five years' time? Do you have any goals that need fulfilling?

The goal that's been weighing the most on my mind is building my animation skill set so I can get a more secure job. 3D animation is becoming more and more ubiquitous and expected, but I'm lazy and have a habit of avoiding responsibility when I'm scared about the future, so it's a struggle against my nature as much as it's a struggle to learn something new. I hope in 5 years I have better begun this journey, and have either taken the full position at my current job, or found another which they aren't looking for another person.

I also hope to be married to my boyfriend of two years. It's something we've mutually decided to wait on until he's at least finished his bachelors degree, which he'll have done next spring, but then he's going onto grad school to eventually get a doctorate. So that will also greatly affect where I am, both professionally and personally, especially if he has to move some distance to go to school.

Do you have a favorite game/movie/band/painting/etc. that you'd like more people to be aware of?

I don't really play many games which are too obscure, but I don't hear a lot of people talking about Thomas Was Alone. I think Extra Credits once listed it as one of those "Games Everybody Should Try" or whatever, but it's a really interesting take on a platformer both as far as story and gameplay.

Enter the Haggis is a great celtic rock band everybody should be aware of, especially if you like Floggy Molly or the Dropkick Murphys. Also Loreena McKennitt for more traditional celtic music, and a pianist named Ludovico Einaudi if you're looking for some beautiful piano instrumentals for relaxation or background music for work.

And I have one movie I think everybody in the world should see--Persepolis. It's an animated film based on graphic novels written by a woman who grew up in Iran during the Iranian Revolution. It's a very personal story from her perspective, filled with both hyperbole and stark truth. But it still feels very human and isn't the kind of story you see being told about someone from Iran. My favorite scene is when she illustrates her struggle to get ahold of western media when she was in gradeschool, passing shady people on the street who have their wares hidden under dark coats like they're selling crack, only it's music albums, comic books, and t-shirts. I think she ends up buying an Iron Maiden t-shirt and album.

Do you have any pets? What are they and what are their names? (And if you don't, do you want any? Which ones?)

Sadly I have no pets. I would love a cat, and would have gotten one or two or five ages ago if my boyfriend weren't allergic. I'm not much of a dog person, to me they smell and are kind of dumb and are way too high-maintenance, but if I started living with my boyfriend I think I could handle getting one. I think I could go for a German shepherd, a corgi, or an Alaskan Eskimo. The sheps his family owns are smart and well-behaved, corgis are cute enough that I could deal with their silliness, and I hear Eskimos groom themselves and don't have that dog smell.

If you would like to nominate someone for an upcoming Community Spotlight, feel free to let me, Marter, know by PM, or use this thread. When nominating, please tell me why this user deserves to be in the next Community Spotlight, and provide links if possible.

Permalink

Congrats, Lilani!

Can't think of many users who deserved this as much as you. Btw, you really should get a cat. Cat's are the best. Your boyfriend can deal :P

First! (Hopefully) Goddamn it Fappy!

Anyways, great Lilani is definitely up there with "people who are genuinely awesome I've found on this site".

I also have to admire how she seems to always be the one responding immediately to necros before mods can even respond.

I do wonder where the name comes from though. Does it happen to just be her first name or is it something else entirely?

Jesus it is a bit spooky to be browsing the site on the toilet at work and seeing your username pop up in the latest content feed XD

Corruption! Collusion! Conspiration! What am I talking about!

Anyway, welcome to the big leagues, Lilani. Have a YouTube account where you upload animations at? I really want to see them.

Congrats, Lilani! You certainly deserve the spotlight!

Lilani:
Jesus it is a bit spooky to be browsing the site on the toilet at work and seeing your username pop up in the latest content feed XD

That brings a whole new meaning to "shitposting".

huehuehuehue

Lilani, I don't recognize you anymore without your Belle avatar.

You've changed. I thought you were about reading books in a meadow somewhere, now your avatar stares at me like a South Park Canadian.

Get a kimodo dragon! They're like cats, just less fuzzy.

Congrats on the Spotlight too! You're definitely one of the users who deserves more recognition. :D

Congratulations Lilani! Well deserved.

Lilani:
Jesus it is a bit spooky to be browsing the site on the toilet at work and seeing your username pop up in the latest content feed XD

Dat avatar, coupled with the idea of you on the throne.. Erin has just shifted a big'un methinks.

Yay, a shout out for Thomas Was Alone And you're right, not enough people talk about that game.

And definitely a deserved spotlight. :D

Congrats on the spotlight Lilani!

Posting in R&P with a cool head deserves that kind of recognition, if not a fucking medal. :P

This spotlight raises the question on whether cuddling a cat or cuddling a person is the superior activity.

Congrats on the spotlight, regardless.

Good on ya, Lilani!

Lilani:
Jesus it is a bit spooky to be browsing the site on the toilet at work and seeing your username pop up in the latest content feed XD

You think that's bad? I saw your username at my work.

:P

Congratulations.

I didnt know about the Spotlight but congratulations Lilani.

You engage in conversations and debates in a great manner. Even when the room is in the middle of a rough battle.

Congrats Lilani. I read many of your posts and find you to be very interesting and you brought many great points in debates.

Lilani not liking dogs offends me.

Rabblerabblerabble.

Congrats to Lilani. She done earned it for sure.

Congrats Lilani, you've definitely been one of my favourite posters to observe over the years, even if I never said so.

Congratulations Lilani, I'm glad to see you got a spotlight.

sky14kemea:
Get a kimodo dragon! They're like cats, just less fuzzy.

Also I second this. They even give love bites. Wonderful, bacteria filled affection.

Congratulations on being selected.
It's gotta feel a bit like being made to stand up in front of the class while they shoot questions at you.

All the best with the 3d animation work and all the best to your boyfriend on his b.a.

Enter the haggis sounds interesting.
Possibly illegal north of the border, but interesting.

Well done, you deserve this. :)

Cool! :D

I have seen Lilani around pretty much... everywhere, but I've never really gotten to know her... This is a bit of a sense of the person behind the avatar now. :)

Lilani is one of my favorite people to read on the escapist.
I think it is even cooler that she's in animation! Many of her posts make a lot of sense now.

...yeah probably came off as creepy. Ah well. Congrats for the well deserved win.

Josh123914:
Lilani, I don't recognize you anymore without your Belle avatar.

You've changed. I thought you were about reading books in a meadow somewhere, now your avatar stares at me like a South Park Canadian.

Teoes:
Dat avatar, coupled with the idea of you on the throne.. Erin has just shifted a big'un methinks.

image

Skatologist:
I do wonder where the name comes from though. Does it happen to just be her first name or is it something else entirely?

Weeeeeeeell, funny story, lol. Way back when I was 13 years old I begain playing Final Fantasy XI: Online. I needed to come up with a username, and like most nerdy middle schoolers I had a fixation on anime at the time. But I knew little about it or the Japanese language, so I made up the name "Lilani" because I thought it sounded a bit Japanese. Then later I learned that there is no "L" sound in the Japanese language, but by then I'd accepted it as a part of my identity so I just kept it, lol.

And thanks everybody else! I feel all warm and tingly right now :3 *hug* You guys are the best. I believe this is why I've never been able to get away from here, lol.

sky14kemea:
Get a kimodo dragon! They're like cats, just less fuzzy.

Congrats on the Spotlight too! You're definitely one of the users who deserves more recognition. :D

Eclipse Dragon:
Congratulations Lilani, I'm glad to see you got a spotlight.

sky14kemea:
Get a kimodo dragon! They're like cats, just less fuzzy.

Also I second this. They even give love bites. Wonderful, bacteria filled affection.

These facts are true. :D They'll love you tell you're dead. Then they'll love you again shortly after while snacking. xD

Fun fact: the females can also "love" themselves up their own babies, so you don't even need to get two if you want dragonlings! >:D
http://animalworld.tumblr.com/post/2148013083/komodo-dragons-can-reproduce-through

Anyway, Congrats, Lilani!
May the coming years bring you success!
=w= b (<-thumbs up face)

She actually talks to me and I'm nuts so that right there says she has the patience of a saint. For that alone she earned it.

Ive dropped out of the debate circuit and Im not sure if Lilani remembers me but I remember her. Always had respect for her.

So is community spotlight a thing again? Its nice to see this feature come back to Escapist.

Capcha: Way to go donny!

Bad captcha, the name is Lilani

Congrats Lilani! As the others have said a very well deserved spotlight.

And you are absolutely correct about the Eskimo thing... most of if not all the "Husky" family of dogs do a very good job keeping themselves clean, and don't get that wet dog or just general dog smell. I think my Akasha has had two bathes in her whole life (she's 3) once when I got her from the breeder, and another when she got into some mud as a puppy.

Strazdas:
So is community spotlight a thing again? Its nice to see this feature come back to Escapist.

We're hoping to keep it a regular thing again. Stay tuned for more!

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here