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To Conclude…

By taking part in a blog-creating assignment like this one, we have done more than what was required for a university course. We have further contributed to the information overflow of today by providing new research, ideas, experiences and insight into a topic which is sure to continue stirring up interest and curiosity in many people. Members of our group have definitely been influenced by the conducted research and came to see online interactions and personalities in a new light. There is no doubt that websites such as Facbook and YouTube will continue to grow in popularity and it will be extremely interesting to see how we continue to use these resources and what the advencements and repercussions will be.

-Pablo Zysman

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Understanding personal identities however, is a complicated task. We all share personality traits that are almost common in everyone, and even the personnas som people portray socially might seem almost identical. The fact of the matter is that even though some individuals might seem extremly identical, at the end of the day they are NOT the same person. Even identical twins will not share 100% of the same personality traits. Even though they might look the same, they will still individually be interested in some different things like foods, activities, music, people, and more. They are both still individually unique. Every one is, and that’s the thing; some people might just be the loner type, new in town, have a very busy life or simply have trouble meeting people with whom they can share a wide range of interests with. Therefore creating an online version of themselves might easily open up the possibility of enhancing their lives in one way or another by meeting people with the same interests.

Facebook isn’t really used to meet people in this manner, but the possibility of being used in such a way is still there. One for example could type in the name of a television show, and the name of a bunch of people would come up who have that as one of their favourite shows in their profile. The same can be done with political views, religion, interests, favorite books, and so on.

There are two issues at hand. One – is the fact that creating a virtual identity of oneself doesen’t always have to be viewed as a negative and fake creation. For a lot of people it is a very good manner of opening up and gaining self confidence, where in the real world they perhaps would have been lacking. Two – what would happen if people did utilize resources like Facebook to meet people in the way mentioned before? Would it be viewed more or less as a dating site or something? I believe people don’t use it in such a manner because the majority of people on Facebook are young adults, and we would percieve it as awkward or weird if someone asked to be our friend just because we had a thing in common on our profiles; but if this was the case there is no doubt that we would see the website in a diferent way. The results of websites such as Facebok depend on the ways we wish to interact with it and put it to use.

-Pablo Zysman

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What did you say??

Another thing that Facebook and YouTube have in common is the clashing of different opinions and therefore part of people’s personalities. On Facebook, one could be seeing the posted picture of someone’s beautiful baby, a beautiful work of art, or just anything that the creator feels is beautiful and very meaningful until some moron comes along and comments “that sucks” right underneath it. The same thing can easily happen on YouTube, and to even a larger extent! On facebook, its somewhat more of a personal environment where one can easily click on your name and see who you are. However on YouTube, offensive comments are made like its nothing! I have to admit, I have made an offensive comment or two about videos in the past. And why did I do this? Honestly I just loved the fact that I had the freedom to say absolutely anything I wanted and no one was going to do anything to stop me! So is it possible that people’s real personalities are somewhat shown through what they express in picture or video comments? Perhaps its not a full indicator of their full personality, but actions like these show us the extent to which people are willing to express themselves in an environment where thier identity is kind of blurry such as cyberspace. Some people can even really let go and show their true beliefs against certain groups, pictures, videos, etc of the big corporate businesses that post information on social networking sites. Now all of the comments posted on the sites are not all negative. Positive feedback and compliements are posted all the time as well. It all just further develops the idea of community building online and creating cultures within these communities. If people would rather post nice comments on people’s videos, they will stay away from offensive or idiotic videos, and simply comment on the happy, beautiful or meaningful ones, because they feel it would be nice to interact and have some sort of connection with the nice people that posted the video or picture. The rest, will stick their finger and opinions whereever they please.

-Pablo Zysman

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The internet, let alone social networking sites, automatically creates new communities. In the billion year history of our planet, there has been nothing like it that allows for the coming together of people, cultures, religions, ideas, opinions, and even the meshing of other techologies. The content expressed online can be offensive, beautiful, inspiring, or just simply mundane. Many believe that an online identity is exactly that, mundane and meaningless, but some would think extremely different.

Even though Britney has cleaned up her act, could she still be her old self online?

To explore the growing trend of persuing an online identity, we can look back in time. Karl Marx argued that capitalist societies are clearly identified and divided into social classes; the bourgeois upper class who obviously has always controlled the means of produciton, and then everyone else, who fell under the “average citizen” category. Without the opportunity to ever have such a large share of content creation power, the “average citizen” would always stay in-line with capitalist ideologies of the upper class. However, whatever bourgeois it was that created the internet, could have made the mistake of a lifetime, because as we know now, the “average citizen” has a never before seen power in their hands, shifting the balance of power of content creation more and more every day, providing a new perspective on life.
Possibly one of the most inviting and interesting aspects of this power the average citizen holds is that for the most part it is all free. Uploading videos on YouTube or creating an account on Facebook asks for nothing from you but your interest in the possibilities that these websites can open up to you, and the world.

The degree of free speech and ease of ways of achieving even the illegal prove to be of intrigue to a lot of people like hackers, identity thieves, piracy promoters and many others; but the fact of the matter is exactly this one – that some people just take it too far, especially by doing things such as the ones aforementioned. As for people with a fake Facebook profile, fake information, fake names, and so on, its almost the same thing as with hackers, except they are not taking it as far as doing something illegal. They both want to have an even bigger share of that power over content that they really should not be allowed to have. We all know there aren’t fifty Britney Spears living with the same face, but we do know that there is one, and if she is on Facebook, one of the search results will be her, and the rest…well, those will be people sadly looking for a certain power they wish they had.

Mr. Dan Brown below makes some extremely interesting points, check out his video!

-Pablo Zysman

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In one way or another, YouTube is much like Facebook. For a lot of people that wish to share their views, opinions and knowledge, its a home-based studio where they can unchain themselves from social norms (well most at least) and proceed to share their content with anyone in the world with acces to the internet. That’s the difference between Facebook and YouTube. In the journal “The Future of Children”, Patricia Greenfield notes that anyone can enjoy the content that YouTube has to offer without creating your own personal account. This allows for one to examine the content on the website and then make an educated decision about whether to become a member of YouTube.com or not. However for someone to be able to see absolutely anything on Facebook besides the “Welcome” page, one MUST decide whether they will want to create an online identity of themselves or not, right then and there; and if you decide that Facebook is for you, you have yet another decision to make, and that is: how honest are you goning to be in your depiction of yourself  in your profile, and also how you’re going to use the social networking tool.

In 2009, YouTube decided to add what is known as “Facebook Connect” to their website, which is pretty much a program that allows amateur content producers to publish and share the videos that they upload on YouTube, on Facebook. Asides from this function, it also provides users with the chance to automatically make it public on their Facebook profile, when they have “favoured” a certain video on YouTube. I actually believe this is pretty interesting! The meshing of the social networking giant and the amateur video content giant coming together for the benefit of young people and their developing online indentities can prove to be a great tool in showing everyone’s 600 “friends” what type of videos “defines them as a person” on YouTube. It’s unlikely that this is the main purpose behind the coming together of the two websites, but the fact that since the implementation of the program on streaming video websites like YouTube people have been watching 30% more videos and commenting on them 15% as much (www.allfacebook.com).

-Pablo Zysman

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Just be yourself!

We all know that through social networking websites such as Facebook, we can create a virtual version of ourselves that we feel adequtely represents who we are as a person; well to a certain extent of course. The fact of the matter is that these websites have no restriction holding us back from perhaps twisting things around a little bit.

Sources like Facebook have become one of our generation’s favourite way of personal expression, it allows us and millions of other people to see our “new” selves in a third-person perspective; and its this new personna that we portray on our profiles that we see, and other people see, which leas us to compare this image of ourselves with that of what or own personal self image is. Changing the details about us on the profile might portray us differently, but do our actual selves change at all? The fact of the matter is that it seems, like sometimes some of us might believe that what other people see on Facebook is more important than reality. Therefore some individuals will go out of their way to even create another “more impressive” profile or a more “professional” profile. In the end, there seemes to be a point where we become the profile, or in some cases the altered profile become us.

Who knows how many dogs there are on facebook?...

 

-Pablo Zysman

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Here we go again!

Well, it seems like its that time of year again, and we’re only finishing the month of January! Yes, Apple has intoduced yet another revolutionary gadget that is sure to make a tremendous impact in the world of technology, future innovations, possibly the economy, but above all people’s lives. Now the most advanced versions of it aren’t going to be available until April, but this past Wednesday, January 27th, Apple CEO Steve Jobs introduced the Apple iPad to the world. Now I won’t go into much detail explaining the new gadget, but as you can see (in the picture at the bottom) it looks a lot like an iPod Touch; and that’s essentially what it is – an iPod Touch but on steroids. However as you might have noticed, I did not say that the iPad is much like the iPhone in the sence that it will not contain the cellular phone funciton and surprisingly will not have an integrated camara. Asides from that though, the iPad will have every funciton and applicaiton available to it that the iPod Touch and iPhone have, therefore making us just as obsessed with it as we are with the rest of our portable ICT’s today, if not more.

I understand that companies need to come up with new innovations evey now and then; but what’s the deal with Apple? Do they honestly never stop working? What is it that drives them to come up with a new product or a new and improved product at least once a year? I believe that Apple are now at a point in their business that they just have no choice but to keep feeding fuel to this “Analog culture” and further invest in the interests of the consumers who have embraced their products so much. Apple has had such a dynamic decade in every sence of their business, that it could be said that everyone that has indulged in Apple products have become or are close to becoming fanatics of the brand. People’s emotional investment in their products must have become so large that demand for their products must be so high, explaining the high price for a single share of stock ($192.06) and that engineers must feel high pressure to keep innovating, upgrading, and improving products every so often.

In addition to the addictive aspects of the iPod, iPhone and not the iPad, Apple has made it extremely simple to dive into the user generated world of YouTube. Literally, with the touch of one “button”, or should I say “tap of the screen”, one has been and will be always able to access  YouTube on the new iPad. On the other hand ICT’s such as BlackBery, who does every effort possible to compete with the iPhone don’t provide their users with this luxury, at least not so easily. This is certainly one of the facts that people remember when they think of the iPhone or compare the two devices. This great example of convergence cultures provides a great incentive for new Apple costumers.

It almost seems like Apple and its alliance withYouTube seem to be headed torward the same direction, but as Apple fanatics drive to stores to acquire the latest gadgets it could eventually beg the question if the freedoms that YouTube could become limited and the whole website as just another capitalist tool, that’ll ask you for a membership fee. Who knows…but what is known for sure is that Apple fans will be ecstatic come March!

-Pablo Zysman

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