This afternoon was the last symposium for the semester and the year! Shout out to Betty, Adrian, Elliot and Jason for all their efforts, ideas, support and patience with the subtly diminishing attendance…
This weeks symposium we discussed the protocols that cushions the way in which we engage with each other online. Giving a simple and concise explanation, Elliot defines protocol ‘as a rule or governing principle regarding how to connect with others online’. Touching on both technical and social protocol, the guidelines of which govern which websites can be accessed by who and how, and how people generally should and shouldn’t behave online. However, although there is a broad grouping between the technical and social protocols that exists online, it was summarised today that the two are both deeply interrelated and do not function independently. The discussion on social protocols then moved into the questioning of how we develop social protocols with new social software. What social protocol does this new website invites us to adhere by? After the lecture, Monique and I discussed this in relation to the new social website ‘Ello’. As a new member of this emerging social networking site, Monique along with many others, is currently trying to work out what kind of etiquette is required. Is the crediting of all images necessary? Or is it something that one can just let slide like thousands do on tumblr? Is it a site with a more ‘professional’ or ‘formal’ touch or is ok to make posts that are a bit random and humorous?
Finally we discussed the technicalities of an email address, which was some very insightful new information for me as Adrian very helpfully likened an email address to a mobile phone number. Learning some new terms such as DNS: Domain Name System and IP: Internet Protocol of which relate to the respective ‘human readable labels’ for the identification numbering systems for all internet devices.
Informative and interesting, the content of this symposium provided a great end note for the semester!
Discussing online protocol in today’s symposium when I cam across this article…No surprise here that it’s South Park, of all Televsion show’s that out of all 458 video games to be proposed to the Australian Classification Board, they are the only one to be denied.
In order to abide by the social protocols of blogging, I have decided not to state exactly why this game has been denied, as it its both offensive and implies sexual violence. However, if you want an idea of exactly what NOT to do in regards to video production, please have a read!
Skimming over the news this morning as always, I briefly check the technology section in case there is something interesting and relatable to weekly content. Finding this article on US woman Sondra Arquiett’s who’s Facebook account was hacked by the US government’s Drug Enforcement Administration. Using real photos and personal information, this woman’s friends and family were tricked into believing spontaneous posts were actually coming from Arquiett herself. This made me think about the discussion in this week’s symposium about databases. With the extent to which Facebook is now used, currently supporting over 1.28 billion monthly active users Facebook has pretty much become one big online database in itself. Holding the names, date of birth, emails and personal images of almost all your friends and family, Facebook could be just as efficient, if not more so, in finding the details of people you have never met…
With this news article itself states ‘The case shows that legal standards of privacy are struggling to keep pace with technology, which is evolving constantly. And it shows how the same social media platforms that can serve as valuable resources in criminal investigations can also raise sensitive privacy implications, which are difficult for law enforcement and the courts to navigate.’
So how do we now think about a phone? How do we think about a Facebook account? Social networking site, social database, social security hazard or beneficial communication tool?
This issue also worries Nathaniel as he talks about iCloud’s lack of security in recent weeks in his post ‘Hey Ma! The Rains are Coming’. Ashleigh on the other hand expresses her thought that even though many databases are now online, the narrative structure can still exist.
During this week’s symposium, discussion ‘too-and-froed’ between databases and design, and it really wasn’t until about half way through until i realised just how interrelated they actually are. Network media now is simply just a mass of mega databases, and really everything we do with technology is dependent on it. For example; pretty much the only phones you see people with now are the iPhone or the Samsung. Whether this heated and business-vicious affair turns out to be just another fad or not, the point is that as a result of this, such a large proportion of society has now linked themselves in with the databases of iCloud or Dropbox. Why so? Is this really because of the technology that is being offered? Or is because of the way in which these fancy new phones are being marketed through the graphical design capabilities that are now available? When you think about the subject of ‘design’ now, it is now about creating something that is better than what is available now, but about creating something that is bigger,better and more advanced then the what people can already predict. Social technology is now changing and advancing faster than it ever has before and because of this databases are now becoming more and more crucial to maintaining security of anything you put online. Or are they? Perhaps the term personal databases would be more appropriate, given the recent celebrity nude hacks…
Taking a totally different perspective on databases is Kenton who questions the broad definition of a databases, proposing that perhaps a database could also be zoo or a supermarket.
Then Kiralee jots our her ideas in dot point form, simple and easy and an efficient way to tackle something that as we can see, can be approached in may different, albeit correct, viewpoints.
Talking about the ways in which new media are studied and experienced as historical subjects, this week’s reading suggested something that I found very intriguing. Lets momentarily remove ourselves from our daily technological whirlwind. Everyday we’re so caught up in texting, emailing, tweeting, blogging, liking, hastaging..the list can go on and on. Yet, how often, if not ever, have you thought about how all of this came about. Just like the ancient old question, was it the chicken or the egg that came first, which came first in the development of ‘new media’? Was it the development of technological methods and devices in which resulted in advance, interlinked communication? Or was it the development modern ideas of communication that sparked the development of technological devices that allowed for such communication desires? Perplexing isn’t it! As easy as it would be to pick one, both options are equally viable. Does the newest version of Facebook come out because we need better ways of communicating or because the website technology was developed first?
Searching through the many interesting posts of other students to see what they have to say about this weeks content, I find that Monique has tied her reading in with the discussions from this weeks symposium. Monique reflects on the secondary reading from this week by Manovich. Funnily enough though, I also found that there are linking ideas from Kenton who also see there to be no beginning or end to databases. Similarly, Monique finds from Manovich that ‘the database in itself is always growing, and, like hypertext, becomes increasingly more connected and is never complete. There is no beginning in certain databases, nor is there a final link.’
Sitting in the quiet area of the library this afternoon, doing a post about this weeks symposium I noticed a little old lady next to me doing some quiet study of her own. Head down into her books, busily taking notes I wondered what she could have been studying. Initially I thought, perhaps she’s getting a new dog, or maybe she’s planing on growing a vegetable garden this spring. When she eventually left, curiosity took the better of me and this is what I found! I guess this just shows you that you certainly can ‘teach an old dog new tricks’. Utterly adorable! Kudos to you lady! For everyone else out there, technology isn’t going anywhere so no matter how ‘out with the times’ you feel, never forget that you’re never too old to learn.
During this week’s symposium before discussing the readings, Adrian explained to the group (albeit as shrinking as it is…), exactly why our current assignment is designed as it is and why, for the first time in my experiences this year, we have been given the option – and more or less urged, to submit a rough draft. Referring to the concepts of studio based work and collaborative work; Adrian connected the ways in which we will be expected to work in the professional world, as media writers with our current process of draft submission.
With the endless supply of information storage that is available on the internet, and the way in which the internet is now programed to store all content deep in craters and caves in the online world, it makes perfect, logical sense for those in the media profession to be required to submit multiple drafts of proposed online submissions. The extensive way in which companies network themselves now, if an employee was to publish something incorrect or in contradiction with company values, it is no longer simply read but those with access to company files, or with connections to employees, but to millions of current and potential customers, and can additionally be linked to thousands more. Editing work is something that is engrained into us from a young age, yet it now more important and detrimental than ever with employers checking employee’s social media pages now being a standard requirement.
Slowly seeping into the sights of the public, having arrived without a bang or some corny and ultimately penny pinching marketing technique, the newest edition to the social networking world is ‘Ello’. Having coincidentally just heard about this site from Monique Myintoo only yesterday, I’m quietly feeling pretty hip and trendy right now. Originally built as a private social network, Ello has attracted so many people over time that a public version of Ello has been created for everyone to use. Currently still pretty ‘underground’, as I read through this article about a social site that is uniquely yet very successfully running off ‘invite only beta’ and Ello is taking a refreshing new spin on what we have grown so accustomed to as social networking. Currently, this is the fact that Ello does not allow for advertising and therefor is detached from the claws of pervasive online surveillance and tracking that is enabled through advertisements. This alone appeals to me, as nothing is now more annoying than being forced to watch an add on youtube if you wish to continue on to your video, or trying to read something online and an annoying add pops up on your screen and even when clicking on the decline button, does it direct you to their site anyway!
I am very intrigued to watch the success rate of the young ‘Ello’ as current social networking dominators, Facebook and Twitter will do anything to compete with and overpower any website that poses a threat. However, ‘Social networks are like languages — they are only worthwhile when they are broadly adopted’ and without the help of advertising, whereby a social network indirectly sells their users to another company, Ello must still be able to make money somewhere, somehow if it is to continue its growth.
So spread the word to friends and family and lets see what happens!