Thursday, 30 October 2008

Just thinking about yearbooking myself.

Aside from the clear detrimental effects the Inmternet is having on our language, the Internet is also having a disgraceful effect on us getting all above ourselves and hoity toity.

Now the yearbook I think is a lovely example of new technologies giving a new twist to the old -
there are amany examples of the 'book' online - such as some sites quaintly ask 'visitors' to sign the 'guestbook' and so on - and a great many ask us to sign in - and then out - as we leave. (and don't forget we still insist on referring to web pages.)

But I digress.
What I am talking about today (if I can only keep on topic) is the way we are constantly invited to DISPLAY ourselves in so many ways.

And don't we just love it ... filling in those facebook profiles, (you can even pay for help)uploading dozens of images laying a trail of our online self all over the digital web.

Thus we have sites and pages on eBay - with a profile pof our buying and selling; we can have a YouTube profile and a space to customise; we have our fabulous blogs and Flickr streams blah blah blah.

I am thinking about how we have these cubby holes, these HUBS, which store our digital selves and we lay threads frpom them, reaching out to other spaces. There is this idea I am playing around with that is about writing and multimpodal text making where we develop an online self - the self as textually constituted - that pays homage to our off line life and each infleunces the other. Jill Walker writes about 'distributed narratives' and this is an idea to which I keep returning - and I am thinking now about distributed identities - that we produce through text.

But hey look at this - this is a grand way of the Internet playing with identity.

Friday, 24 October 2008

Be wary of leaning on your laptop!!

This evening as I was answering comments on my last blogpost I heard a voice saying 'who is that? and 'Who is there?'
I could not work out where the voice was coming from but then realised I had leant, without noticing, on my pc mouse. This meant that I was accidentally talking to Mrs Cassidy in Canada -.
WoW!!!! The Mrs Cathy Cassidy.

I wonder when I won't get excited about stuff like that? Will I ever take these technologies for granted? Part of me never wants to just get accustomed to it all. I want to always feel the magic of an event where I can be at home on my sofa, and talking to a teacher in her school in Canada. I don't want to think of it as ordinary or mundane. I think it is fabulous!

Mrs Cassidy's blog is just fantastic - as are her students of course who must be amongst the luckiest kids ever!! It seems that the yackpack gets used quite a lot by people, check out this post.

Check out yesterday's video:

But the thing I really love about Mrs C's latest finds is pictaps.

If you are interested you can put a walkie talkie channel on YOUR blog too .. how about it?

Sunday, 5 October 2008

iDentity, iText

A few years ago someone said that I had no way of knowing that Riverbend was a real person - that she could be lying about her identity.
This same person also suggested that I could not authenticate tommigoodwin who had been keeping a blog Senitel 47.

At the time I was fed up to be doubted like this - to have it suggested that Iwas being duped. But in retrospect I see this was an understandable suspivcion from someone who did not spend much time online - and it made me work out how Iknew that these bloggers were not 'fake' - whatever that might mean.

I realised that I had undergone a subconscious checking prodecure - just as I might in other areas of my life - just as when I meet someone new face top face - . In face to face situations I am not naturally suspicious of people but I guess obver time you learn how to pick up inconsistencies and can then spot someone who does not seem quite who they say they are - the person they say they are is not the same as you see enacted. Goffman writes about this as 'telling' signs - you can articulate one thing but your behaviour tells another.

What I find interesting is the way we want always to move beyond the text onscreen, back out to the lived life beyond the virtual world. When I was studying English Lit many years ago, I was atold always to keep to the text. To analyse just the text and not worry about the author's life. This is now an unfashionable approach I believe - I think now that in English Lit they learn that context of the writer is part of the meaning of the text.

And so too I suppose onscreen. We have to take into account the context of the writer.

Thus we tell people in our profiles where we live and who we are . People read this stuff and are angered when it is not true.

Just thinking aloud today - for once in months.