Goode questions

How will citizen journalists change professional journalism in the future?  Will the freedom of citizen journalism persuade media professionals to filter content less?  Will this cause major news outlets to change the way they report the news?

Will citizen journalists begin to coexist with professional journalists?  Will audiences begin to prescribe to different news outlets to satisfy their need for information?

Social Media: A necessary evil?

Social media is erupting in all age groups, and we are slowly discovering how to operate within its realm.  Facebook currently has over 800 million users (facebook.com/press/info.php?statistics) and when Boyd wrote her article there were only  500 million users.  These users have the ability to shape and customize their social media experience.  Some users may take advantage of the opportunities that come with social networking, while some may succumb to the pitfalls.

It is important to be informed about how social media works and how to use it in a responsible way.  Social media, Facebook specifically, is evolving everyday.  In 2004 it had a wholly different structure and, at least for me, served a very different purpose.  The potential social media has for things other than simple social encounters is great.  I also never knew how valuable twitter could be as a social media tool.  Social media can be a wonderful tool  and a great way to connect with friends if it is used correctly and responsibly.

Boyd talked about teens disregard for behavior on social media sites, and how educators could use it as a tool to enhance their educational experience.  This struck a chord with me because for the first time since I have had Facebook I am using not only for social purposes but as well as for academic purposes.  Not only do students in iMedia use it to connect about assignments but there have been a few instances where the professors have engaged us as well.  It has actually shaped the way I now use Facebook, I go straight to the iMedia pages because more often than not people are asking questions about assignments or posting stories relevant to interactive media.  Using social media in tandem with education is a great way to engage students and to keep them involved after the school day is over.

Boyd talks about how younger generations use social media somewhat haphazardly.  When one is typing away at home on their computer and it does not seem like there would be any concern or worry about who is seeing this information or how long it will remain.  The young generation of social media users have grown up with technology and social media intertwined in their lives, and they are not thinking about the possible repercussions of their actions.  For them social media could be a detriment in some cases, and learning how to conduct oneself in a social media setting is important.

Not only do people need to be careful about what they post in social media but they also need to be informed about how social networking sites are utilizing their information and how they might be taking advantage of users privacy.  The talk with Eva Galprin really made me think about what information I am sharing, prior to this my only concern was keeping my information private to other users, however any information that is given to Facebook is theirs forever.  It really makes me wonder why everyone (with a few exceptions) is so blindly trusting to these sites.  Its a big brother situation that we are willingly jumping into, and the vast majority of people are not very well informed.  It will be interesting to see how this privacy issue plays out in the future, and if users will stand up to change the way things are.

It is obvious that social media can be a great thing if used responsibly.  However there are several aspects of it that users need to be aware of in order to understand what they are sharing with the world.  Being informed and understanding what you are sharing and with whom is the most important part of contributing to a social media site, but ultimately it is up to the user as to how they navigate social media.

Education and social networking, Boyd

What is the future of education and social networking?  How will educators deal with the phenomenon of social media and the possible hindrances it poses to education? Will social media begin to become more entwined with education?

Will there be a shift regarding education and social media as the current population of social media users age and become the educators of the future?

Response to Lessig’s Code v2

Prior to reading Lessig’s writings I was unaware of the all encompassing nature of internet regulation.  I did not know that there was so much turmoil to do with internet regulation and free sharing.  It is impossible for me to believe that people will stand by while bits and pieces of our internet freedoms are taken away.  However even though people may oppose the loss of internet freedom, they may not know that things are changing.

The need for governments to have unlimited access is somewhat understandable from one perspective.  Yet it encroaches upon privacy and basic freedoms. Regulation is already happening in China, and  they have a communist government.  The amount of control China has over their country’s internet is staggering, it begs the question where will the line be drawn for other countries of the world?

Governmental involvement like that is really looked down upon in the US and yet, several years ago there was an attempt to secure control with the ‘Clipper chip’, and if regulation was being sought then it it surely more appealing now with the growth and vast expanse of the internet.

The patriot act looks to observe and see what people are doing on the internet and nobody questioned it because it was a matter of national security.  However it seems that the act was just waiting in the wings for a situation to arise where it would be accepted by the American people.  Of course at first it was welcomed with open arms, but as a people we were not well informed of what we were supporting. It seems like a very tricky foray into control and regulation.

Much of what transpires on the internet is illegal and immoral, but the same can be said for reality.  Yet in reality regulation is a more tangible thing.  Over the expanse of the internet there are millions of people in millions of places.  At the beginnings of the internet the government attempted to gain a monopoly on encryption software in a few different way, and yet they failed.  Will an attempt to foster control fail again?  At this point in time is it even possible to think that any kind of control over the internet by one entity is possible?

The concept of governments regulating  and tracking what people do on the web is alarming. The entirety of the internet is not used for illegality, so the notion of governments, or some kind of ‘internet world police’ enforcing the use of digital IDs is ludicrous.  Perhaps in the future we will see it as the norm to provide identification over the internet.

Questions – Code 2.0 – Lessig

In the coming years, as the internet becomes more and more regulated will people oppose this level of control on something, that has since its inception, been so free?  Or perhaps the change will happen gradually and it will not be easy to see what is happening before it has happened?

Will google be a part of internet regulation in the US?  And will people stay in support of google if that happens?

What effects has internet regulation had on the people of China?  Will watching their reactions to an over regulated internet be a model for other countries of the world as it happens?

‘You are not a Gadget: A Manifesto’ Jaron Lanier

Reading ‘You are not a Gadget’ gave me a slightly nervous stomach.  My prior perception of the internet was that it is, for the most part, a good thing.  It brings people and businesses together, it allows us to have a wealth of information at our fingertips among so many other positive things.  However Lanier brought up new things that I had never realized before.

It is obvious that there will be an economic shift with respect to technology, but the picture Lanier paints seems as if we are headed down a road fraught with peril without even realizing the consequences of our actions.  When he brought up the point that economies have been somewhat shaky since the inception of the internet I was shocked.  Many of the other things we have read have to do with how the internet is a place of boundless possibilities.  Yet, like with anything else, there is an alternate side to all of the wonderment.

The fact that internet and technology could be hindering economic growth is a frightening thing to think about.  Yet once one is presented with all of the facts and history about the rise of other technologies it is easy to see how an economic transition is a very real possibility.

At the beginning of the book I was curious to see what Lanier’s predictions were about what kind of future it is that we are creating for ourselves.  His proposals on how people could make a living seem ideal.  That being said however he acknowledges how few people are actually making it as independent musicians.  So while he has great ideas, implementing them is another story.  Perhaps, when forced by economic circumstance, people will adapt into the roles that Lanier constructs.  His way of thinking about musicians is much different than the masses think about it, which is the one barrier between his ideas and reality.  Another barrier to his thoughts on musical employment is the fact that there are so few independent musicians out there (which is probably why mass perception of the music industry differs from Lanier).

In his TED talk Lanier mentioned that not everyone agrees with his opinions on the things, which did ease my mind slightly. It is impossible to predict the future, and hopefully economies will be able to adapt to the change as it happens.  Lanier brings up many shockingly valid points and some of them may come to fruition.  An ideal situation to solve this problem (of impending doom) would be to take some points from Shirky, and harness the power of groups organization, in order to solve this dilemma that has been created.

Questions for ‘You are Not a Gadget’ By: Jaron Lanier

Are there any other initiatives (other than the proposed code of conduct that failed) that seek to stop internet harassment?

Has there been any research on the effects that social media has on individuals with respect to ‘trolling’ as well as any other accompanying negative behaviors and why are these behaviors manifested in some situations but not others? Is it ultimately the anonymity that prompts people to act in negative ways?

What is more prevalent, the organizing of groups as Shirky pointed out, or the ‘troll’ behavior brought up by Lanier?

What does the future look like to Lanier, what are his predictions for what is to come with the web?