Internet and Identity (Post 4: Reflection on whole Module – Focusing on lecture in week 8,9 and 11)

Posted: January 6, 2012 in Web Culture

pic 1Internet is an evolution made by human. It plays important role to shape the interaction and communication among humans. Nowadays, Internet merges into our daily life activity. The evolution begins from a system which had been built for academic purpose in 1962 and after that internet evolved into a net that connecting every computer in the world. As Leiner et al (2011) state that ‘the Internet is at once a world-wide broadcasting capability, a mechanism for information dissemination, and a medium for collaboration and interaction between individuals and their computers without regard for geographic location’.

Today, human and internet no longer having distance, we always have internet connection in our pocket through our mobile phone. Due to the invention of web, the use of internet is become massive.  We have to distinguish between web and internet. ‘Web is not the same as internet. Think of the internet as the tracks and signalling, the infrastructure on which everything runs. In a railway network, different kinds of traffic run on the infrastructure — high-speed express trains, slow stopping trains, commuter trains, freight trains and (sometimes) specialist maintenance and repair trains. On the internet, web pages are only one of the many kinds of traffic that run on its virtual tracks’ (John Naughton, 2010).

Because of the birth of web 2.0, the latest type of web, social media are now mushrooming. Facebook, my spaces, twitter, you tube on the one hand is fun and entertaining, it also help people to keep in touch one and another. On the other hand, it has negative potential which need which need to be solved. Based on my interview with some friend, I found interesting case related to identity in social media. A friend told me that she had bad experience with social media, her account on Yahoo Messenger, Google Talk, Twitter, and Facebook had been hijack by someone. The hijacker used her account to chat with my friend’s colleges. The hijacker acted in digital world as if he/she was my friend. For my friend, the identity on digital life is important as if it is her real life identity. She afraid that what the hijacker did in her social media could ruin her image among her colleges.


Nowadays, in my perspective, the boundaries between digital life and real life is become blur. This two world is seems to become one world.  Based on the research of Facebook conducted by Zhao et al (2008), it is wrong to treat online world and offline world as separate world. What the people do in online world can give consequence on the actual world.  So according to that, do we need control or regulation towards digital life? Who will do that? What the parameters? Because in my other observation, social media especially facebook can become the source of harmful activity. For example, in Indonesia, there is news about groups of teenagers who fight each other after teasing each other in facebook.

Reference

Naughton, J. (2010) The internet: Everything you ever need to know. Available from: http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2010/jun/20/internet-everything-need-to-know (Accessed 28/12/2011)

Leiner, B. et al. (2011) Brief History of the Internet. Available from: http://www.internetsociety.org/internet/internet-51/history-internet/brief-history-internet (Accessed 28/12/2011)

Zhao, S. et al (2008) Identity construction on Facebook: Digital empowerment in anchored relationships. Computers in Human Behavior, 24, pp. 1816–1836.

Pic 1 can be found at http://cfcedge.exbdblogs.com/files/2011/06/internet.jpg

Video can be found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-e98hxHZiTg&feature=related

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Comments
  1. xhino says:

    The article is good. Perhaps, it can be improved by providing some tips or recommendations at the end of the blog post, regarding how to prevent identity theft or how to protect privacy on the internet, particularly on social media. By the way, nice selection of blog theme, simple but eye-catchy. 🙂

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