Who Am We? Turkle Response

In the article, “Who Am We” Sherry Turkle discusses the links through the internet connecting one person to another.  What Turkle found was, “the Internet links millions of people in new spaces that are changing the way we think and the way we form our communities.”  These “links” provided can involve social networking like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.  Having these connections with people is what makes the world go around today.  Each year the internet is making is quick and easier for people to use.  The Internet is not a source of technology that is going to disappear.  The internet has become a source for an Americans every day life.  As for some people like the student, Stewart, in Turkle’s article, the Internet is his life. 

Another “link” that can be found on the internet involves the area of Internet Relay Chat, newsgroups, bulletin boards, and commercial online services.  These services include the cycle through cyberspace and real life.  Relating to having a cyber life, there is a show called Catfish on MTV that connects two people in a relationship from their cyber life and real life.  Sometimes the stories are successful and other stories the boy or girl are not person they say they are online.  With this negative outcome, there is heartbreak and the person getting their heart broken won’t have any confidence living in the real world.  The game involving having a cyberspace life which can be different than your real life is called a MUD.  To fully understand what a “MUD” is Turkle says:

“MUDs are a new kind of virtual parlor game and a new form of community. In addition, text-based MUDs are a new form of collaboratively written literature. MUD players are MUD authors, the creators as well as consumers of media content. In this, participating in a MUD has much in common with scriptwriting, performance art, street theater, improvisational theater, or even commedia dell’arte. But MUDs are something else as well.”

 

For Stewart, his online identity is totally different from who he is in real life.  Stewart is a college student that should be outgoing, meeting new people and making friends.  Instead, he is depressed and sits alone in his room unable to have the confidence he has like his cyber life.  Reading the article I believe that he has some challenges facing social interaction and acceptance of who he is in real life.  However, Stewarts online identity, Achilles, in a MUD game, is the total opposite.  In the game, Achilles is in a successful relationship, something that Stewart is not capable of successfully doing in real life.  I believe Stewart needs to be able to connect these two separates life’s he has to be happy and be successful in the real world.  Having this cyber life won’t last forever and in the end he is still going to be alone if he does not doing something about it.  

My view of the internet is that I would not use it to have a second life.  I’m not against it but it is just not something I would use the internet for.  If a person does have a cyber life they should be able to evenly live that life but also enjoy the real life that they are in.   I use the internet for a majority of reasons in my life including, social networking, researching information for school work, writing, download and listen music.  The internet should be used at the best of it’s advantage but it should not takeover someones life to the point where in the real world that person is lonely.  

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