The Web 2.0 Mentality: I Share… therefore I Am

It is often said that new technology aligns with shifts in behaviour, or, that we create new technologies to suit shifting behaviours – the two are aligned, but one does not necessarily cause the other. We adapt to new technologies, then we adapt them to our own lifestyles.

However with The Innovation of Loneliness, Shimi Cohen suggests that digital media is replacing positive face-to-face conversation with a more isolated way of communicating.
But where does this leave the traveller, or the exchange student, myself, who has to rely solely on exchange with others back home over social media? For me, it is useful, simply because it is not in real time. Replies don’t need to be instant and conversations can continue over a number of days.

It’s true; things can be misread, subtleties lost, and meaning construed, but the new medium paves the way for a new kind of conversation, and a new kind of interaction.

Sharing.

With the phrase “I Share, therefore I Am”,  Cohen makes an interesting point about the way in which we justify our existence, and our online presence. It is through what we choose to share that we establish our identity. Everyone knows it, it is unescapable; your online presence matters. It’s the easiest way for someone to get an idea of who you are – employers, friends, potential partners. So it does matter, that’s for sure. My American friends, wanting to be teachers, cannot even have photos of themselves with alcohol on Facebook. So they share very little. But then others choose to share more then is necessary, more then anyone really ever wants to know. Check out this article on the fem-douches of Instagram.

So where does the happy medium lie? Well that’s up to the individual I guess… How much do they feel the need to show other people that they are alive, and that the life they live is filled with social activities, overseas travels, and cute babies?

How much inter-connection is too much?

My latest revelation: I think I should tweet more. Twitter seems like one of the best tools around once you actually start to use it, but people criticise it all the time.
I only just connected my WordPress with my Twitter. I’d been hesitant, I didn’t want people who follow me on Twitter or Facebook to read my blog – I’m shy and a little insecure about my writing, and my writing style. Well, the cat’s out of the bag on that now, and I guess I will be linking this post to Twitter too seeing as how I just blabbed about it…. what a mess…. expect no hashtags…

Maybe it had to do with privacy too, I wan’t keen to make myself public on the internet for all to see and connect the dots across Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and WordPress. But working for Bianca from Alphabet Pony and Dizzy Digital made me think twice about that. To gain exposure right now, you have to be willing to put yourself out there. You need to connect all those platforms to generate click between them! Get your Instagram followers onto your blog (especially if that’s where you’re making money), or over to you business’ Facebook page and then onto the main site. The blog is designed to function like an online portfolio, a showreel, a CV and if I can post decent, interesting content on Facebook and Twitter, what’s the harm in having them all connected?
Surely, if I don’t connect them, someone else will when the next all-new all-encompassing app comes out?

Citizen Journalism… what the?

The Guardian’s new app looks to create a community of contributors – embracing citizen journalism, but not really offering anything in return.

While the app does have a bit to offer more then anything it’s frought with potential disaster; legally in regards to ownership and opinion, but hey, they’re taking steps to fill a hole created by the rise of mobile phones and the citizen journalist with mobile phones and the citizen journalist… go figure

Where the Ad’s are at…

It’s a little left of field, but I think it’s pretty interesting all the same.
Dove’s new “Real Beauty Sketch” has sparked quite a lot of conversation around the way in which we perceive ourselves. Despite it’s positive message the AD still plays on traditional ideas of beauty and how we, and others think we should look.
I’ll admit it, I was moved by the video. I cried (but that’s not really anything new). I thought that while it was predictable, it was still an eye-opener and a timely reminder for my twenty-year-old self to be a bit kinder to the way I see myself.
But then I read this. And now, I don’t really know what to think about the ad.
It’s very cunning.

That it has generated widespread conversation is enough of a point to demonstrate that this campaign is effective, but it also demonstrates the movement from quick, 30-second ads on your soap-box to the online forum. These advertisement’s ask users to move online to further engage with concepts and experiences. They seek to generate investigation by the consumer and often result in online discussion.

Six Degrees of Separation

From the day I met Geoffrey Rush at a protest against the development of our local train station I began to calculate how and how many celebrities I “knew”.
I know Geoffery Rush who knows Orlando Bloom (Pirates of the Carribean), who knows — (Lord of the Rings), who knows — so technically I know Daniel Rdacliffe!!! (girly scream goes here)
I was twelve or something, I wanted to marry Daniel Radcliffe.
And I never even knew about the Kevin Bacon game. An online game that links Kevin Bacon to any celebrity you can think of in the minimum number of steps

The Flipped Lecture on Six Degrees of Separation raised one imortant question for me… Whilst some of the packages did succeed in getting to their destinations, and the average number of steps was in fact six, how much easier would it gave been if participants could have simply looked up the professor on the internet?
It would have been done in one, maybe two steps.

So, the lecture succeeded in highlighting the interconnectedness of the world without the internet, but this in turn reinforced the alternate nature of connectivity that we have over the Internet. Computer users, people living in Western society, are almost all noted somewhere on the internet. From allumni lists to family trees, almost everyone can be found.

Furthermore, the video revealed aother one of those links between science and nature that we are finding more and more often. The Golden Ratio. The Silver Ratio. The Science of Chaos. And, an average of six steps to connect any one person to another. Finding concrete mathematical patterns in what some see as the uncontrollable, chaotic nature of life is amazing and really impacts on the way I view the world. Things that many beleive to be random, things that we would never assume are linked. Even in the awkward motions of life there are things that can be calculated, patterns and networks that develop.