Response 8

May 20, 2010

In response to the experiment:

I browsed through the dating website and found it actually rather well organized despite the fact that I had the preconceived notion that the site would be in more of a disarray.  The designer of the website truly knows how to make an assuring atmosphere for the user so that they would be comfortable in the browsing process.  I went as far as to attempt to complete my profile, where I was greeted with a message that my profile would be submitted for approval.  This kind of transaction does breed a bit of legitimacy with the website, although I am still skeptical about their success rates.

In response to the article:

I found that the reading was very interesting.  The analysis of the socio-economic access of the Internet in relationship with the likelihood of online dating websites also was a profound insight.  I appreciated that the article spent a long time delving into the progression of online dating over a period of time.  I also found that the methodology in which they investigate the stigmas and cliches of online dating very well executed.  I would have liked however a more thorough discussion about urbanism and online dating reliance as well as a geographical exploration of highly populated cities like Los Angeles and New York.  Furthermore, I have begun to concede that the platform of dating is now moving towards a direction, analogous to say the rise of online shopping, toward a online environment.  This transition I feel is closely related in that there appears to be thresholds in early stages, yet with legitimacy and organizations more people are willing to make use of it.


Response 7

May 14, 2010

In response to the experiment:

The person that was assigned to me to research is Crystal Yeh’s page.  Born in Tainan Taiwan she currently resides in Los Angeles, CA.  Her major is Psychology.  Her interests include, baking and cooking, L.A. Dodgers and Baseball.  Noteworthy is her need to list both the specific and general  interests.  Meaning, baking a genre of cooking and L.A. Dodgers a baseball team.  To reinforce her interest in cooking, it appears that one of her favorite shows is Top Chef a show on the Food Network.  The obsession with food continues further into her photographic images of restaurant spaces and processes of baking confections.  There is a tremendous amount of contiuity in Yeh’s photo album.  Chiefly, in her attendance at other restaurants such as The Melting Pot.  It appears that in baking, her specific fascination is with desserts, which can be verified in the recent albums.

With a flurry of pictures of baked goods and even a subscription to a Facebook game called, “Restaurant City”, it would not be too much to project that one of Crystal Yeh’s future plans maybe opening a restaurant or cafe of some sort.  Perhaps if this is not a life goal, it must have been a latent thought or suppressed aspiration.  With food being such a prevalent part of experiencing her page, it gives a lot of information as to what Yeh wishes to communicate to the public.  To strike interest in Yeh, would likely be to have a palette and affinity for eating.

In response to the reading:

Privacy over social networking sites is an increasing issue as the identity of individuals are moving increasingly more into a public realm.  I agree with the article in that it is structured to emphasize the responsibility of parents and users to understand the terms that public information is used.  I believe that accountability is the utmost issue that issues of privacy should be concerned with.  One is very responsible for the amount of information that they generate.  The part of the article that struck me was the quote of, “―Privacy isn‘t just about hiding things. It‘s about self–possession, autonomy, and integrity.‖ [30] Privacy is the ―right of people to control what details about their lives stay inside their own houses and what leaks to the outside.‖ [31] Citizens and consumers should know who collects what information and how it is going to be used.”  I found this interesting because it is true that our information, the ways we represent our online identities is about control in many ways.  The establishment of the way the public perceives our identities is very much about this agency of control.  The social networking environment allows us to reconfigure a way of representing ourselves.  Those who disclose their information online are not necessarily unaware of privacy issues, rather, they are commanding a kind of disclosure that reinstates and reinforces their identity to the outside world.

It is obvious that users decide what they want to disclose to the online public.  So what is the solution to fix or regulate inept users?  Do we really need the option of disclosing our addresses on social networking websites?  Should we have the option of displaying our mobile numbers to the public?  This are limitations that can be implemented through restructuring a social network’s programming.  The responsibility and accountability of users and parents to regulate  online activity perhaps is too idealistic for the hyperbolic culture of social networking.

Response 4

April 30, 2010

In response to the reading I believe that the comparison between the social impact of the television and the Intern is valid.  In relationship to internet addiction it does pose an interesting question as to what we are perceiving as necessary, or essential information.  The idea that one should change how they watch television is applicable to the way which one utilizes how they use the Internet is an important position to adopt.  Yet the Internet is much more dynamic than one perceives simply because of its ability for users to generate content as well as its significant impact on our economy.  These factors make the Internet a far more dynamic platform that makes breaking interaction, or even, changing our interaction with it complicated.  As we are increasingly dependent on the Internet for reasons beyond pleasure, it has developed into a necessary mechanism for our subsistence.

In response to the experiment.  Not using the Internet for 24 hours was a refreshing experience.  I have done similar exercises before.  The idea of a detox away from the Internet, I believe is necessary for contemporary life because it is very much an abstract lens that we are perceiving the world.  Its overuse at the times limits us in multiple ways, especially from our ability to maintain physical productive practices.  True, the internet has improved the quality of life for many people.  But because the Internet is largely free, unmonitored and presents few consequences of overuse makes it appear almost as a dystopia in which we can embrace our wildest exploits and fetishes.  This analogous world is fascinating for its ability to allow users to indulge in vice in as a non-physical entity, variably private way; often, this chiefly may be the reason why those of us find the Internet so addictive.

Response 3

April 22, 2010

In regards to the experiment, I have found that the development of creating an online community is valuable in a sense that it becomes an open forum, accessible for a large margin people people from varying backgrounds.  The opportunity to discuss information, opinions and events are one of the hallmarks of the internet.  I have found that, employed as a tool for discussion of various matters it has become profoundly useful.  Yet the quality of information the free flow of ideas from questionable sources makes for the generation of misguided information as well. Credibility of answers becomes the biggest concern of many people who value information given from forum websites.  However this usually is solved from the community giving their varying views and deciphering the continuities that exist amongst comments.  Another issue which comes to my mind however that can be troubling is when this information which is conceived as a person-to-person message becomes exploited by consumer capitalistic practices.  Companies tend to become predators for the inquiries of online users by exploiting their need for general opinions and marketing products or services.  Thus while the validity of comments generated can be practical, the open forum nature of the Internet causes a user’s genuine identity to be questioned.  It is certainly up to the strength of the community to regulate these intruders of forums.

Here is my forum post:

In regards to the reading I have found that the discussion of relationships fostered by the Internet is interesting.  The ability to create a meaningful connection with someone using an indirect mode of contact such as an online “Cybercity”, in is conception encourages a lot of people to speak to one another when otherwise incapable of communicating.  I also found when the article mentions, “It also seems clear that after the initial stages of  friendships have been negotiated online, they are often treated much the same as any other friendship” important to note because it seems to parallel the physical interaction of people with the online mode of socialization.  I believe that the Cybercity construction is in a lot of ways far more efficient in the promotion of communication across vast networks of people, yet the definition still remains of what a “pure friendship” truly is.  A “pure friendship” in a physical sense, should not ever be considered the same as one conceived online.  One conceived online is still to a large degree artifice, and does not constitute a face-to-face interaction, to believe that a relationship built in a Cybercity would translate identically in the real world would be naive.  The terms and conditions in which one meets some online is vastly different than the intricacies and justifications of meeting someone in person.  Where the anonymity of Cybercity and the consequences of interaction online are usually not apparent, they are in the real world.  Thus although the construction of both interactions has been deemed parallel, they are two separate modes of communication that, while have the potential permute between one another, still contrast in practice.

Response 1

April 9, 2010

In response to the weekly reading:

I have found the following quote from the article, interesting.

“It’s like I can distantly read everyone’s mind,” Haley went on to say. “I love that. I feel like I’m getting to something raw about my friends. It’s like I’ve got this heads-up display for them.”

Whether or not someone is revealing something truly explicit within their lives in the environment of social network is rather questionable.  The sense of ‘raw’ or realness which someone believes they are receiving through the process of reading News Feeds is never not contrived or mediated.  It is important to note that beyond idealized occurrences of daily activities, what is represented on Facebook or Twitter is an abstract.  The details and intricacies in which constitute the action is never well understood.  One may argue that the validity of the users status is a subjective response toward their trust in the privacy system and associated contacts, yet the obvious nature of one’s status must be questioned for embellishment.  In my own observation and notes on the development of Facebook have brought me to this idea that it is parallel supplement for reality a personal interaction.  I agree with the article in that it states that Facebook does allow the potential for events and gathering in a organized way.  But the example in which the article seemed unnerving.  If one can construct a happenstance social interaction, than physical interaction is a subject of question, which is deeply disturbing.

The article was somewhat informative, yet it has also made me more disillusioned by the agency of social networking.  I have my own bias and affinity for the concrete psychological detachment of one from the internet, that does influence my interpretation of the article.  Yet the article seemed too heavily idealized.  The constructed reality brought forth from the author, views Facebook as a world of possibilities for communication.  It spends more time illustrating and fostering this imagery, instead of also disclaiming its flaws.

In response to the experiment:

I found it unusual to notify my friends on Facebook about my whereabouts.  It was not a familiar activity for me.  I found it rather difficult to summarize everything that I was responding to in my environment in such an abstract way.  I have found that this activity is easier for most.  Instead, I reconciled this act by posting my current place in time for the viewer’s interpretation.  I did not want to exercise any sense of interpretation on my part.  It was an interesting experiment albeit a bit misguided as one’s ability to express their response to their current place in time depends on the personality of the user.

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