One of the most common reference to early 2000s online chatroom is ASL, or age/sex/location. During the era of dial-up and before the emergence of most MMORPGs, these chatrooms are where people met others virtually. Unsurprisingly, people were rarely truthful about themselves, hiding behind the anonymity provided by the Internet. This trend, however, is changing quickly.
There are many platforms where groups traditionally stayed virtual have decided to meet in the real world. World of Warcraft, perhaps the most famous of all MMORPG, partially thanks to South Park, is known for having players meeting each other in events like BlizzCon. Here, players across the world are able to find a common space and meet not only as their in-game avatar but as people.
Even more recently, Reddit, a half community-organization half RSS reader have launched some of the biggest user meetups in cities like New York and Los Angeles. Unlike WoW, which typically have a common reason for meeting up (being a part of a guild, playing the same game, etc), Reddit meetups typically have less in common besides using the same website. Now, the Internet is not only a tool for having anonymous conversation (it is still great for that), but to allow individuals to actually get to know each other, face to flesh.