The Effects of the Internet

Posted in Uncategorized on February 14th, 2018 by Cherrita Thao

People have a real fear that the internet is making us become more dependent and less intellectual. We speed through articles, our attention spans are lowering, and it’s lower the youth’s brain development because of it. Shirky teaches theory and the practice of social media, but he’s come to the conclusion that students shouldn’t be using their electronic devices anymore in class. They are getting less and less involved and scoring lower on tests all because he would allow the freedom. However, over the years he’s noticed their attention spans are being affected, as they are constantly multitasking and trying to focus on too many things at once, falsely believing they’re toning their multitasking skills, when in reality, it’s lowering the quality work they’re doing with one activity. Students around people who are on their laptops actually become affected by their behavior in a negative way too, much like secondhand smoking. They’re looking over every now and then, not paying attention to what the professor has saying. Shirky also says that by having no devices being involved at all unless intentionally allowed, he’s noticed more engagements, better learning atmosphere, and overall better grades among his students. It’s hard for him to compete against Twitter or unknowledgeable-but-entertaining distractions and information when trying to teach his students about theory.

Nicholas Carr also brings up how Google is making us stupid, bringing back up the fact that people don’t really read anything anymore but just merely skim through information. People just click on the first few links, read the first few paragraphs, and move onto the next information. We don’t do our own researches anymore and allow others to do it, and most of the time, it’s from people who are just ordinary people like ourselves so we’re drowning ourselves in ignorance. Having that said though, the internet is just full of thoughts and information that comes from the people: us. There’s really no escaping what is found on the net, and since the majority of people are just regular people, not really professionals, we’re going to be seeing a lot of un-scholarly, unreliable information more than we see of the opposite. It’s because we are allowed freedom of speech on the internet, and so there’s going to be a lot of unnecessary information and plenty of distractions. However we just need to be aware of this and not let ourselves believe everything we read on the internet. Much like how Socrates thought writing would less the brain strengthening its memory muscles and ability, when really it helped us in the long run with the spreading and evolving of ideologies and information. The internet can be seen as the same way, where we believe it’s doing us bad but perhaps in the long run it’ll serve to help us more than it does hurt us, if and when used the right way.

Loneliness

Posted in Uncategorized on February 11th, 2018 by Cherrita Thao

All of these articles talks similarly about the same thing: loneliness and why it is that people such as Marche may feel as though we’re becoming more lonely than we ever have in history due to social medias like Facebook. He goes to argue that Facebook is just a social platform in which we live false lives. We use them to disconnect from our real lives and live in a fantasy world where everyone is always happy and the constant comparison of others to yourself will make you more depressed, causing health issues in the long. We fool ourselves to thinking that Facebook is making us connect better when really we’re just looking for substitutes, when bonds and connection aren’t the same. Cacioppo says that evidence for media making us more lonely is mixed, meaning there’s really not a reliable source. Klinenberg also counters Marche’s argument about us not visiting often or going out more is because we always contact each other through social media to make plans first before visiting and that we’re been using cars to go see each other rather than to isolate ourselves. People are spending less time going over to each other’s houses and prefer to message over social media. Although it may seem like it, I feel as though social media is just over exaggerating who we are. Lonely people will be lonely when they go to social media, and social people will be social when they go to social media.

People are always displaying their good side on social media because it’s almost like a public display of who you are, and therefore it’s good to be aware that everyone’s seemingly perfect lives aren’t always that they seem to be. Hence the reason why many people like to go anonymous sometimes because it allows them to say something they normally would not have if people know who they were. It gives a person 100% freedom of speech without the pressure of society. Yes, it can lead to negative thoughts, but that’s just how people are. People also like using different stage names too for their social media platforms. Even though Facebook did not allow this at first, they’ve come to an understanding that this is important for some people. People with stage names have built some sort of reputation with that name and would like their audience to easily find them that way. I don’t necessarily think that’s you lying to yourself but more so just a side of you that you normally wouldn’t use in real life for the sake of appropriateness.

I know Marche is concerned oh how all we ever do is want to disconnect from our “real” lives and go to social media, only to dig deeper on our own loneliness by doing so. However, a person can either sulk about it or do something about it if it really matters to them. Honestly nothing is to blame. There’s always at least two ways on how you choose to feel about anything: negatively or positively. I feel like there’s all kinds of groups to be apart of and people to talk to, there’s opportunities for one to find their place and be able to cope with those who also like the same things you like, which is why I don’t think social media can be all that blamed. It’s a place where people can connect, and you can connect to groups that interest you and find people that way. It’s almost like a book, you find ones you like and ones you don’t like. Ones you like, though, usually aren’t outweighed by the ones you don’t like but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a book out there somewhere for you.

 

Privacy on the Internet

Posted in Uncategorized on February 5th, 2018 by Cherrita Thao

After reading the first chapter of “The Future of Reputation: Gossip, Rumor, and Privacy on the Internet” by Daniel J. Solove, I noticed a few things that really popped up to me and started questioning my own behaviors online as I react to the latest viral video online.

I feel like we are enslaving ourselves by making it impossible to escape from the shackles of our past and from the stain of gossip and false rumors. Bad news will follow you forever, especially on the internet. Nothing goes erased, even if you think it did. I feel like though, that’s not something we should be concerned about. I feel people are too obsessed with their social standing in life, that they forget people who love them are not judgmental and will never shame you for what you’ve done in the past. We all make dumb decisions and shouldn’t be forever shamed for them. A lot of us are judgmental backstabbers though and like to point fingers at someone else, pointing out their flaws no matter who they are now. Unfortunately it’s the majority of people who do that, over the minority.

I think it’s a no-brainer to say that the more you put yourself out there, the more you’re allowing for risk and trouble to come around. I think it’s important we all understand that before we start playing on the internet. People are going to face lies and rumors no matter what. It’s been here before internet, it’s going to be here with the internet. The problem is, it’s much more enhanced and people from all over the world will have access to see and read these lies and rumors. I don’t think I have the right to tell each other what they can or cannot share how much information they want to about themselves on the internet, I just think it’s important you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. Although, it’s true that even if you don’t want to associate yourself with the internet and stay away, there’s almost always going to be some sort of information about you whether it’s through friends, family, and local community. Personally, I don’t put a lot of personal information about myself on the internet and I am fortunate to have had no trouble yet with personal information or problems leaked onto social media through friends and family. If a person wanted to get to know me, they’d have to come talk to me, because they won’t find much online anyway.

Quite honestly, I don’t think people are going to ever be in complete control of their personal information online. It’s unavoidable and inescapable. The best you can do is educate the people and get them to know what they’re getting themselves into by using the Internet. I like to think of it as a community. People are gonna get curious, they’re gonna talk, some are going to do you wrong and that’s just how the world works. I think it’s just important to care less about your social reputation and care more about the people who will not judge you, who know who you are behind the screen, and who support you. Not a bunch of people online who think they know you just because of a few things you’ve said, a few photos, or a few things they’ve heard from others.

I don’t think people’s social transgressions should follow them on a digital rap sheet that can never be expunged. It’s almost like we’re writing everything you do in your own book and exposing that to the public. Another reason why you have to be careful who you choose to trust on the internet, because if you’re a person who cares about reputation, you’re going to have a hard time when a snake comes and deceives you of your trust.

I think inciting moral outrage will create a mob driven police state. If this is a good thing or not, that I don’t quite know.

Ultimately with new ways of communicating, there inevitably comes ethical questions that will rise. I feel in order to answer these questions, we must remember who we are as humans: imperfect. Do we have the right to laugh, to judge, to hate someone else for the things they did? Can we find ourselves to be forgiving, loving, supporting more than spreading hatred and fear? When I was reading the first chapter, I felt myself feeling terrible for the things I have laughed at. Much like the “dog poop girl” for instance that the author had started his book off with. Yes, what she did was wrong and I can only imagine how upset and disgusted I would feel if I were there at the scene, but to think something like that will ride her shoulders forever, it almost seems like we’re the type of culture that will always humiliate and hate because of this new permanent spread of information. With this, people will probably be afraid to do anything they want to outside of their homes, because a large media police like us may not like what they’re doing and shame them forever because of it. I would like to believe we aren’t that cruel and we’ll probably know when too much is too much. However, I’m not the type to hold grudges and I believe in the good in people, and that people can learn from their mistakes and change. I just hope the rest of humanity will do the same.

Love Online and Village Phone Shirky

Posted in Uncategorized on February 1st, 2018 by Cherrita Thao

Love Online is an article written by Henry Jenkins which starts off talking about his son meeting his online girlfriend for the first time. Using his son as an example representing all of the youth that’s online dating these days and the effect the internet has on teens.  The second article we were to read is called Village Phone Shirky written by Clay Shirky.  He starts off the chapter about Ivanna, a woman who leaves her phone and a 16-year old girl name Sasha stole it, unwilling to give it back to Ivanna. Ivanna’s friend, Evan Guttman is called to help out with tracking down her lost phone, and eventually Sasha gets taken to court and the phone is finally returned.

Technology brings people together from all over the world, creating this new group-formation that we’re not able to do. It allows us to connect with people in ways we wouldn’t have been able to outside of our physical boundaries. We are able to reach people instantly in the same interest categories. We can’t just post things just anywhere on the web and expect the same results. Much like Evan did, he sought for help in the right areas of the internet, a place where people are willing to stop and check out what he has to say about helping his friend save 300 dollars. This allows for people with similar interests or connections or even just the general public to be able to help Evan if he wanted to. But this also allowed for Evan to be open for attack from people that supported Sasha. Since Evan was able to catch the attention of so many people, news spread super quickly not only locally but outside of that too.

When Shirky brings in Tom O’Reilly’s concept of “architecture of participation,” the idea is that we have all of these technological items that allow us to communicate to one another and give us the opportunity to take part in things we’re interesting in. Just like how Evan uses the web to reach out, asking for support and gaining help from people who are willing to give their time and effort to retrieve the phone back. In Love Online, this concept shows in how we’re able to connect to people and share intimate feelings with them even if it’s online. The development of bonds through the net happens because we’re able to share information about ourselves and learn to

If Evan were to only make calls and do things the old-fashioned way of communicating out to others, he would have probably never find out the information he did about Sasha if he hadn’t looked online, and never fain the amount of support to put enough pressure on the police. He changed the way he communicated and that’s how he built the support base that he did, fighting alongside people with similar principles and beliefs that they’re doing something altogether for justice. For Evan, it wasn’t about getting the $300 phone back, it was more the fact that he wanted to fight for justice, and to fight that theft is wrong no matter how little or big, and I feel that’s what drove him to fight so far and deep to win. As for Love Online, we are open to more variety of people and it becomes easier to get in touch with those that are interested in what you’re interested and go from there. Jenkin described his son’s behavior online nothing new compared to what we’ve been doing all these decades: writing love letters. Except this time, we didn’t have to had seen them in person first. We can just communicate directly to people and build that bond of love interest using the same concept of writing love letters to one another. Finding the time to spend calling each other and figuring out a way to one day meet one another. Because of the evolution of communication technologies, we are able to make these kinds of love relationships over the internet simply because a person’s way of writing to you and the way they’re portraying their character attracts you. You become addicted to who they are and uncovering their mysteries, sending photos and hearing each other’s voice. Now even video calling. We’re able to feel a deep connection with someone miles away even if we haven’t physically met them. And when the time does come, it’s as if you’ve known them for so long, that it’s a complete and utter joy. A relationship online may be harder in the sense that the two might not be able to see each other in person all the time, but it’s all about trusting the other person and loving them for who they are and how they’re able to attract you by just their personality alone.

I think whether online or face to face, communication is the same no matter what platform, program or interface. We need to trust even if it means we’re risking in order to grow a community and build a bond between people. Risk happens in everything that we do, and I think the risk percentages hardly differs from an online person to a person face to face. Of course it’s smart to take a little bit more caution and I’m sure building that bond takes longer online, but asking why we trust is going to have the same answer as to why we trust a person in general. A society cannot be built if no one trusted each other. We already have a natural foundation of trust from person to person, and that’s how we are able to collaborate and work together. That’s why we walk down the streets, trusting that whoever comes near us won’t suddenly attack us. We drive around, trusting that everyone would follow the road rules. We connect and communicate with people online, trusting that what they’re sharing about themselves are true. All of this, unless proven otherwise.

We share information to achieve a goal whether it be for self-confirmation, to spread news, raise awareness, or to stay in contact with friends and family. Naturally as humans, we are biologically social animals and so with the use of technologies and interconnecting with other through the internet, we our ability to socialize has spread globally. This creates for opportunities to network your name out there for better possibilities of jobs and advertising of one-self. This is also used to express yourself online and share your opinions, to get your voice out there and be heard.

Important lessons I’ve learned is if we’re provided the opportunity to interconnect with people online, we should because it gives us greater power to make a difference. With more people aware and the support numbers growing, naturally we’ll be able to change whatever it is we feel passionate about. I feel this is a repeating lesson throughout Village Phone Shirky. A lesson I learned in Love Online was just seeing how nothing’s too different from writing love letters in the past to now communicating through the internet towards our interested ones. It’s all a bond made solely by trust and faith, and I think a relationship like that is a beautiful one. Communication technologies has definitely opened up so many opportunities for us to get involved directly with people all over the world instantly.