From Pinterest

Sometimes getting away from it all gives new perspective. Our internet culture is world-wide, but we still segment ourselves in to smaller boxes. Perhaps our lives as social entities are unable to comprehend the vastness of it all, so segmentation is inevitable. Unless you’re on the moon….

Just Pinned to Community Cultures: ”You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, “Look at that, you son of a bitch.”

From Pinterest – How can you ‘counter’ anything when you are continually observed?

Capitalism needs to continually feed itself, and monitor its participants to ensure the system is never effectively challenged. Technology and education serve both emancipators and jailers.
“to be ‘counter’ is to be in opposition, to something, some ‘mainstream’. The sheer profusion of net based affinity groups with who users might ally themselves make the political ‘edge’ of the term ‘countercultural’ increasingly irrelevant.” (Lister et al 2009, p 167)
Lister, M. … [et al.], (2009) “Chapter 3. Networks, users and economics” from Martin Lister … [et al.], New media: a critical introduction pp.163-236, London: Routledge

Just Pinned to Community Cultures: They’re watching you…

From Pinterest – Don’t look up

Old media is keen to highlight the fears surrounding New Media, especially as at the time of this movie, peer-to-peer file sharing was subject to urban myths and moral panics.

Just Pinned to Community Cultures: Enemy of the State (Will Smith, Gene Hackman) – 66% – An exciting action thriller.

From Pinterest – Long Tail market reach

“… the net afford Long Tail market reach, [the] audience may be much smaller than in the era of mass media”  Lister, et al (2009  p.172)

Just Pinned to Community Cultures: long tail
Lister, M. … [et al.], (2009) “Chapter 3. Networks, users and economics” from Martin Lister … [et al.], New media: a critical introduction pp.163-236, London: Routledge

Is the discussion forum helpful?

I picked this link up from Twitter, via @philip_downey:

A look in to how MOOCS are evolving, particularly away from the use of discussion fora.

[NSFW] Online Cultures: sharing stigmatic status – “weeabos”

I am not a “weeaboo” but continuing with the collection of notable sub-cultures and communities I’ve encountered on the web over the years, I thought to include something about an online community for which participation requires identifying with a culture entirely different to that which you live in. With apologies to anyone who doesn’t read the NSFW tag as “not safe for work”, this content has profane language, and is presented as dark comedy which may not be to everyone’s liking.  I include it as a stark example of the following quote:

“Because of their online community experiences with others who shared their own stigmatic status, they considered themselves less different, benefited from the increase in self-acceptance, and felt less socially isolated”. Kozinets (2010)

This video encapsulates the above statement on at least two levels

  1. There’s a stigma associated with the YouTube content producer TVFilthyFrank
  2. The subject is about a group of people who benefit from the internet bringing them together, and providing them with the means to enjoy and enforce their cultural norms. (see Kozinets 2010, p28)

However, the YouTube content challenges the acceptance of the “weeabo” culture, and in doing so, draws attention to it, and potentially furthers awareness and draws more people in to it. The language could certainly be seen as derogatory to those participating in the culture. This raises a question about morality online, if online community can form around any subject, is it also fair that any community is open for satire, critique and comment? If the internet is an enabler for creation of community, can it also bring about the reverse for an online community? I also note that the content producer is putting himself up for being laughed at (rather than with) so perhaps there’s some consolation to the weeaboo community there.


Kozinets, R. V. (2010) Chapter 2 ‘Understanding Culture Online’, Netnography: doing ethnographic research online. London: Sage. pp. 21-40.


Week 4 – Round Up

I week 4, I spent time going through the Block 1 artefacts of the other students. This was an enjoyable experience, and put a lot of the ideas covered in to perspective. The idea of love, rage, shame, combined with a simpler life was an interesting juxtaposition pulled in by Philip in his artefact. The sense that despite all our progress in technology, we’re not really that much further forward understand humans. As a race, we’re still very child-like. Perhaps it’s right that our evolution and emotional development requires us to make mistakes through technology. Jeremy highlighted Roxanne’s artefact, which was both excellent and sinister. My comment there is still awaiting moderation, which highlights an issue with the current use of blogs and IFTTT.

I put a lot of effort in to my Artefact for Block 1, and that actually left me a little flat at the beginning of the week, but looking at the other artefacts was a great incentive to move on. It was very much satisfying to have completed Block 1, and the feedback I received was most encouraging from Clare and others via FaceBoook.

I caught up at the end of the week 4 spending time going through some readings and pulling in comments from Lister et al; Gauntlet , and also a thought on the use of Twitter in international politics. I was also looking in to how subcultures flourish on the internet, and the how the ability to communicate around the world increases the chances of finding someone with your particular niche interest to form viable community.

For the micro-ethnography exercise, I selected my MOOC.   Helping out with a non-related tech issue reminded me about the internet is to be treasured, and that from its genesis in the military, tension and conflict between different ideologies remains a core facet of the web’s existence.

From Twitter: Sub Cultures Online

Some subcultures could only maintain existence via the internet. This could be one such….


From Pinterest

I posted this image on Pintrest because it’s a counterculture that has probably risen to greater membership numbers thanks to the existence of the internet. I am not a “furry” but have met several people online who are and chatted with them about it. This image encapsulates much of what I understand about their anthropomorphic fascination.

Just Pinned to Community Cultures: #happinessis Words of wisdom #positivity

“The web allows people to express themselves”

“The web allows people to express themselves”  (Gauntlet, 2005 in Lister et al, 2009 p.166)

People have been expressing themselves creatively longer than the web has been in existence. Those around us would listen, watch, comment. We would seek out audiences if we were either good enough, or thought we were worthy  of an audience. Perhaps what this means is that we now have a world-wide audience within easy reach.

I’ve always dabbled in music, and because you are on the internet, you can listen to what I have produced. None of it about to win any awards, but it has been an enjoyable (pre-child, pre-MSC) hobby.

Gauntlett, David (2005) Web studies: what’s new?, in David Gauntlett and Ross
Horsley (eds) in Lister, M. … [et al.], (2009) “Chapter 3. Networks, users and economics” from Martin Lister … [et al.], New media: a critical introduction pp.163-236, London: Routledge

From Pinterest

I’ve claimed this image to represent something different from the intention of the original (?) author of this image on Pintrest. Echoing Lister et al’s point that the internet was built of the back of a monumental amount of effort, we should all treasure what we have in the internet, and not let it get consumed by the greed of the few.


“Instead [the internet’s] protean identity is reproduced by a mix of fandom, community, commerce and business, linked by technologies that are both private and publicly owned and variously regulated. In other words the Internet came into existence as the rest of numerous factors, accidents, passions, collisions and tensions. ” (Lister et al, 2009, p.163)



Once upon a time… “numerous factors” included a US Defence agency and education institutions who used a network to communicate.  It was so large, that the directory book of all the users’ addresses amounted to several pages…..

Images sourced from an original copy of the Arpanet Directory circa 1982. It was quite a thing to behold.



Lister, M. … [et al.], (2009) “Chapter 3. Networks, users and economics” from Martin Lister … [et al.], New media: a critical introduction pp.163-236, London: Routledge

From Twitter

Copied from the comment on this blog item that didn’t appear in the Lifestream directly:

Ultimately, the human race’s survival depends on our ability to escape this solar system. Perhaps much of the gloom of cyber-culture’s more dystopian views, are partly accepting that our doom is inevitable one way or another. More likely we’ll destroy ourselves before our sun runs out of energy. Granted that point is so far away as to statistically insignificant, BUT nevertheless, understanding how light travels, so that perhaps one day we may travel faster than it, is just another example of how human’s are capable of understanding even more how that might happen when we use tools to our best advantage. Capturing light moving as if it was a solid object is an amazing feat.

From Twitter: Not every bit of technological progress is a giant leap….

Are we looking at the next steps toward our fully immersive future in Virtual Reality?

From Twitter: Block 1’s artefacts