After reading the articles for this week, I was thoroughly surprised to learn about how much the world of virtual worlds has grown and expanded throughout the past 30-ish years. Reading Joe Sanchez’s article was the most informative for me because it really forced me to think outside the box and think about the world BEFORE I knew it.
For me, it’s hard to even imagine a world without 3-D videos, the internet, and texting… because just like Nancy Baym states “machines change us.” I’ve grown up surrounded by and using these advanced technologies that they have changed me, and the way I live my life (not just me, everyone my age.) Which brings my to my next point, how people my age have become SO dependent on technology that now things like “sexting” and “cyber-affairs” even exist. Should I be embarrassed to be apart of a generation where people deceive others on the internet (with looks/age like Lauren Bans spoke about in her article), and spend hours chatting to people who they really have no idea who they even are?
The readings this week really reminded me a lot of the show Catfish, especially when the articles went into the dating and cybersex aspect. If you aren’t familiar with this show, it plays on MTV and it is about people who date others online but have never met in person. They go on the show with the hopes of meeting them in person and living happily ever after, but most of the time they find out that they are not talking to the people who they thought they were talking to. Yes, it is funny to watch but it is sad that so many people deceive others on the internet because they want to be a “better” version of themselves.
What does a “better” version of yourself mean? A skinnier, taller, better dressed version of yourself? Someone who society will accept more? Because to me, a better version of myself would be to be more generous to others, to be kind to strangers, etc. I think that virtual worlds have demented people so much that they really believe pretending to be a character online makes them happier.
Speaking of people pretending to be someone who they aren’t, this brings me to my next point. Where I can relate outside of the articles… watching the show Catfish.
I don’t play video games, but I can relate to these articles through the idea of deceiving people on the internet. “Catfishing” people is becoming more and more relevant in my life because the show really brought awareness to me. I’ve noticed I have fake Facebook accounts that add me as friends, and fake twitter accounts who tweet at me. And it makes me think who is the person really behind these fake accounts? And what pleasure do people get out of deceiving others on the internet?