Week 9 Assignment

May 28, 2010

For the online happiness day, of course I spent it mostly on Facebook, checking my Tweets, and watching YouTube videos (while checking the views on my squirrel video, of course!). I always have fun doing this online stuff, especially when it means I get to procrastinate, and when it gets me in a state of flow. For my offline happiness day, I used the “graduating soon” reason to meet up with friends that I’ve lost contact with since 1st and 2nd years. With the busy lifestyle that graduating seniors experience, it was great to just meet up with friends and remember old times and talk about the future after graduation.

For me personally, it was hard to determine which of the two (online or offline) brought me more happiness. On the one hand, meeting up with old friends is the only way you can really get that truly sentimental feeling of hanging out. On the other hand, networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter present fun ways to connect with friends, even friends that you wouldn’t be able to meet in person due to distance. In relation to the reading, if you aren’t on SNS sites, then you don’t exist to your friends. However, I’d have to say that the most happiness was the offline experiences. For me, the online fun is fun you have in between the incredibly fun offline times. If you’re always online, you can find yourself part of the “generation of lonely,” where all you do is have online interactions and very limited offline interations, if any. It sometimes gets to the point where online life consumes so much time that it ruins many social relationships.

In conclusion, while I have a blast doing stuff online, life is much more fulfilling with offline interactions. Or even better, how about combining the two worlds, such as meeting up with friends to watch YouTube videos, or even create them together!


Week 8 Assignment

May 21, 2010

I thought this online dating assignment was super interesting. Just like the reading states, there’s this certain stigma with meeting someone and falling in love online. Many people feel that relationships can only be legitimate if they happen naturally and in person. It could be because of those horror stories of people meeting someone in person that they initially met online, and being fooled about what the other person looked like or how their personality was, or in the worst case scenario, real-life meetings that result in violence or death. However, there are those success stories you hear about with people that first met online, and it gives a glimmer of hope in this somewhat recent social phenomenon. I would normally never sign up for an online dating site, so it was nice to have this experiment to see what an online dating site actually looks like.

Since the experiment was just to browse the profiles for 15 minutes, I had a bit of fun looking at the profiles of different people. There were so many, and the thing that I looked at first was the pictures and the physical appearance of the person. Based on the picture, I looked at attractiveness, and if I could picture myself dating that person. If that checkpoint passed, then I looked at the actual profile, and read up on the personal info. Some people had some basic information, but others had full on paragraphs of what they wanted to portray themselves as. Whether this was truthful or not is questionable, but I figure that most people wouldn’t put so much effort into their profile if they weren’t serious about meeting someone. It was cool to see how match.com shows users who would be the best match, and it was interesting to see who match.com thought I would be good with. Whether I would actually date someone off the site is up to a lot of things, but considering I’m still pretty young, I would not right now. I think where it would be okay is if I’m not as social as I am in college and meeting new people is very difficult. As of right now, I wouldn’t participate in online dating, but I don’t think it should have as much of a stigma as it has now.

Week 7 Assignment

May 14, 2010

The person that I Facebook stalked is Kristine Isidro. She was born on February 8 and is 20 years old. She is currently single and looking for friendship and networking. Her hometown is Delano, CA, and she is Catholic. Her favorite music consists of artists such as Kina Grannis, Joseph Vincent, and AJ Raphael, and she likes to watch the TV show Glee. Her email address is kristine.isidro@gmail.com, and she has two AIM screennames. She is involved with a couple of campus organizations and groups, including Samahang Pilipino and Students First. She likes baking, post-its, coffee, food, music, dippin dots, new car smell, and awkward snails. She has 630 Facebook friends, and we have 30 friends in common.

This experiment is all about privacy, especially in relation to online privacy with social networking sites like Facebook. I thought it was interesting how I could find so much information about Kristine, without having to say a word to her. Related to the article, I think it’s interesting that there seems to be a disconnect with people putting personal information on their profile, but being shocked and feeling violated when someone talks about their info on their profile to them in person. It’s weird that people get so surprised that something that they put out for everyone to see is being talked about like it weren’t meant to be shared. I’ve had direct experience with this as an Orientation Counselor and warning incoming students to be careful with what they put online, especially inappropriate pictures and confidential information. It’s hard to not slip through and post something on your profile that you didn’t mean for someone to see. I feel like in today’s society, the only way to have true online privacy is to not participate in these social networks at all.

Week 6 Assignment

May 7, 2010

I thought this assignment was cool because it’s something I’ve always noticed every time I post up a status that asks questions. It’s always interesting to see what people write, and it’s interesting to see exactly who replies. As the reading says, Facebook allows us to “talk” to way more people at the same time through the web through things like the status update, and it allows us to maintain relationships with people that we might not see every day. So, every time I posted a question, it was funny to see people who responded it just to mess with me. For example, I asked people which Pokemon they would rather get stuck in an elevator with, and they had to choose between Bulbasaur, Squirtle, and Charmander. It was funny to see people write humorous things, such as naming wrong Pokemon such as Onyx and Pikachu, as well as people actually explaining why they chose the Pokemon they chose. It was also nice when I asked for help and people responded to help me out. I had a midterm this week and asked a question about it. One of my really close friends that I haven’t really seen since my second year at college responded, and ended up giving me a nice answer that helped me on my midterm. It’s great to see how something like Facebook can bring so many benefits to our lives, such as getting help and maintaining relationships with people we have lost touch with. Facebook really makes it easier for people to build up social capital.

Week 5 Assignment

April 29, 2010

This experiment was quite interesting. I had to do something like this before in a communications class I took a couple of years ago. It made me realize just how dependent society has become on technology. I chose to do this on Sunday, because I knew that 5th week would be busy with midterms, and that the Internet would be my lifeline. Other than email, I use the Internet a lot during midterms season, since many readings are online, as well as Wikipedia, which I use when I don’t understand a concept from class. For this reason, I made sure I printed out any online readings before the experiment, and warned my classmates that if they needed to contact me, they’d have to wait. It was very hard to stay away, but I reminded myself it was only for a day. Related to the reading, it’s interesting to think how the Internet and technology in general has such an impact on our lives and can even structure our daily habits from day to day. It makes me think how our lives would be if we didn’t have technology, and how strange and different that would be.

Week 4 Assignment

April 23, 2010

This experiment was really interesting, because it made me think that I open up a lot more quickly to people that I don’t know online than people I don’t know in person. I’ve participated in forums before, and while I didn’t post anything after my initial post, I know that if I had, I would have been really friendly, especially since the people that responded were helping me out by answering my question. Comparing this to real life, if somebody I didn’t know had asked me to help them out or answer a question for them, I would be polite and help them out, but the next thing that I would do would be to get away from them, rather than try to have a friendly conversation with them.

I guess this has something to do with the whole idea of making friends online, as illustrated in the reading. The reading states “You actually get to know someone inside, without being judged on appearance and everything else wrong with the world today.” In other words, you can talk to someone more openly because you don’t have the insecurities of them judging you on your appearance as if they were talking to you in person. This makes it easier to meet different kinds of people, and possibly becoming “friends” with certain people, through “friend-finding expeditions.” The internet takes the process of meeting and making friends to a completely different level.

Week 3 Assignment

April 16, 2010

I thought this was a really interesting experiment. It really showed how anonymous you can get on the internet and that you can pretty much be who you want to be. I pretended I was a bit younger and from Los Angeles, but I pretended that I was a recent admit to USC. At first we were talking about school, and then he started talking about how scared he was to leave home and be independent. I thought it was getting too serious of a conversation so I changed the tone to just talk about music and fun stuff. I didn’t get too wild with what I was saying, but it was interesting to see that I could take the conversation to crazy levels if I wanted to.

I thought it was interesting how much confidence I had just striking up a conversation. It’s mostly because I know that the person I’m talking to can’t see me, so I can say whatever I want and not feel self conscious about anything. This is related to the reading that says people portray themselves online in better ways than they can in person. This is true because I found that I could talk about pretty much anything, and the most that could happen is the person would disconnect on me. This isn’t just limited to online chatting, as people have good control over how they are perceived with their Facebook profiles too. For example, graduating seniors such as myself tend to have a lot of information on their profiles related to jobs they have done. This is because potential employers might look up this sort of information. We know that people will judge us online, but we have a lot of say in how they see us. I think this is really interesting, especially as almost everything is done online nowadays.

You’re now chatting with a random stranger. Say hi!

Stranger: 😀

You: =)

You: why so happy?

Stranger: Why not? Haha.

You: hahah true

You: what are you up to

Stranger: Just listening to some music. How about yourself?

You: oh i’m just trying to create some songs on my new computer

Stranger: Hmm, sounds purty cool. 😛

You: yeah…it’s this cool software

You: hopefully something cool comes out of it

You: so where are you from?

Stranger: USA, PA to be exact.

Stranger: And you?

You: ooh interesting

You: i’m from los angeles

You: downtown to be exact

You: near USC

Stranger: Hmmm.

Stranger: That’d help, if I knew where that was. Hah.

You: USC?

Stranger: LA yeah, USC not so much.

You: oh…do you know what it stands for?

Stranger: Negative. 😦

You: university of southern california

Stranger: Ahhh.

Stranger: Makes a lot more sense now. 😛

You: hahah

You: do you know of UCLA at least?

Stranger: Yup, yup.

You: hahah cool…USC and UCLA go hand in hand

You: do you go to school?

Stranger: Yeah. Junior.

You: in college?

Stranger: Negative. High Scool.

Stranger: School.

Stranger: So, I’m guessing you’re ‘older’?

You: well…i just got accepted into USC

Stranger: Ah. So, 19, 20?

You: 18

Stranger: Gah, oh so close.

Stranger: I’m 17.

Stranger: So, eh.

You: hahha

You: 17 isn’t a bad age

Stranger: Eh, just getting closer to being on my own.

You: how so?

Stranger: Well, it’s not like my dad is going to kick me out, but I’m just getting closer.

Stranger: 18, I mean, that’s the age where you’re technically an adult.

Stranger: I have to take means of my own actions.

Stranger: And so on.

Stranger: I’ll probably end up going to college, so it won’t be as hard. Just a little.. ‘scared’ I guess. Hah.

You: hahah that’s true

You: it’s weird to get older

Stranger: Idk, seems like everything has just glew by.

Stranger: Flew*.

You: yeah

You: so you have any fun plans in the next few weeks?

Stranger: Just chilling with some friends. My sisters are having their birthday party Saturday, so it’s something to do.

Stranger: And yourself? Anything fun planned?

You: i was thinking of taking a road trip somewhere

You: i’ve always wanted to

You: but i don’t know where

Stranger: Haha, ssame here.

Stranger: My friends and I wanna go to Vegas. And my other friend wants to go to Florida.

Stranger: Flordia*.

You: i’ve been to both

You: hahah

You: both fun

Stranger: I’d like Flordia more. Nice weather, beaches, the ocean. It’d just be nice

Stranger: I don’t wanna be broke 24/7. Hah.

You: hahaha so true

Stranger: Def. 🙂

Stranger: So, whatcha up to?

You: mmm….probably thinking about getting dinner soon

Stranger: Sounds good.

You: hahah yeah

You: how about you? still listening to music?

Stranger: Of course. Music is life.

You: hahah

You: what music do you listen to?

Stranger: Eh, mostly depends on the mood. Right now, All Time Low. Most of the time though, it’s Rock and heavy Rock.

You: ahh

You: what about when the mood is high?

Stranger: Nah, that’s not me.

You: aww but you were so happy in the beginning

Stranger: Lmfao. Idk, I just don’t smoke. 😛

You: oh i meant when you’re in a good mood

You: hahah

Stranger: Lmfao, ohh. Haha.

Stranger: Uhh, idk. Pumped up songs. Or I’ll just like, run around my room listening to something with a sic beat.

Stranger: Sick*.

You: hahha nice

Stranger: Totally.

Stranger: I got like, addicted to this new song one of my friend’s showed me.

Stranger: Care to take a listen?

You: sure why not?

Stranger: Your Man – Down With Webster.

Stranger: I use http://www.playlist.com

Stranger: To listen to shit. 🙂

You: haha i just looked it up on youtube

You: ooh…this great

Stranger: That works. hah.

Stranger: Hmm?

Stranger: you don’t like it? Hah.

You: no it’s a good song hahah

You: i like the sound of it

Stranger: Haha. Yeah.

You: i’ll def remember it for the next time i need some good music

Stranger: Lmao, welp I’m glad I could help you out with that. 😀

You: are you a guy or a girl?

You: haha forgot to ask

Stranger: Guy. 😀

You: hahah cool me too

Stranger: Cool.

Your conversational partner has disconnected.

Week 2 Journal

April 9, 2010

I personally have rules when it comes to updating my Facebook status and Twitter, so it was interesting to do this experiment. My rules are that I must try as much as possible not to post too much during a day, and not to post too frequently. I’ve noticed that when I do this, my friends tend to get annoyed or make fun of me for posting so many times. So when I had to post every two hours, I felt very awkward, because I could feel my friends judging me, thinking I must be really bored or something along those lines. It was also very difficult to post every two hours, since I had class and meetings throughout the day. Sometimes it was just hard to remember.

If there was any good that came out of this experiment, it’s that it allowed my friends to see my posts and respond to whatever I wrote. Most of the time it was just simple comments on the direct post on my Facebook profile. This is similar to the reading, which talks about the introduction of the newsfeed. The newsfeed brings my status updates directly to the home page of all my friends, which allows all of them to choose to respond or not. If this didn’t happen, my friends would actively have to visit my page just to see my status. By placing it automatically on the newsfeed, my friends don’t have to do much work to connect with me. I don’t see it as an invasion of privacy either, since I would never put anything too personal out there anyway. Some friends even approach me afterwards in person when they see my status updates, and ask about what I meant when I put that status up. I’ve learned through this experiment that although you’re putting yourself out there on the web by posting up status updates, it does help to facilitate conversations with people, whether on the web or in person.

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April 2, 2010

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