Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Communication & Cyberspace

What is cyberspace? When I think of cyberspace, I think of the part of the internet we can't see. An abstract area that houses our messages and online activity and communication. This book seems to highlight the varying definitions and misconceptions that are often associated with cyberspace."Over the centuries there has been a basic human desire for some kind of invisible mental or spiritual atmosphere that connects in some mystic way all the minds and hearts of mankind" (p.54). I believe the text makes the point that cyberspace is more concrete than we actually think. It includes not only communication but the hardware that makes it possible. I found chapter three to be very interesting. The cyberspace breakdown into areas such as conceptual space, control, it's vulnerabilities, etc were really appealling. In particular, the lack of personal relationships is noted. "We might have a great reange or great effectiveness of communication, but very rarely both, at least not with the same message". The internet is awesome because we are able to reach masses of people but communication loses is genuineness. Emotions are not easily transferrable through cyberspace. The chapter ends off with it's initial underlying theme Who Shall Control Cyberspace?.
I can relate to the messages in Chapter 4 because I use to blog for Funk Master Flex. When I started I was told that if I copied and pasted someone else's article  I needed to give credit, which I always did. However, in my position I had the freedom to create my own content based on prior research. While searching for a previous story of mine, I realized that my original story had been copied and posted to someone else's webste word for word. It was kind of heartbreaking. Although, the guy's site didn't seem as popular as Funk Flex's I was still upset that someone stoled me material. When it was all said and done, I didn't do anything. "The underlying question is whether electronic media has so changed the nautre of publication that a too broad and expansive application of copyright law now denies the public useful access to information by creating excessivly high barriers for entry" (p.72). It's really hard to enforce copyright laws online. Because it is a place for 'sharing', the limitation boundaries are kind of blurry.                               
Overall, I really liked the length of these chapters. They were short and to the point.  The information was clear and concise. I was scared in the beginning that I wasn't going to be able to understand but the content became increasingly interesting. The last theme that is explained in Chapter 11's is really interesting. Risks that are associated with the internet (and children) are really of major concern. If you like hip-hop, Lupe Fiasco has a song entitled "B*tch Bad"... In the song, he says, "Yeah, now imagine a group of little girls nine through twelve On the internet watchin’ videos listenin’ to songs by themselves It doesn’t really matter if they have parental clearance They understand the internet better than their parents. Now being the interent, the content’s probably uncensored. They’re young, so they’re maleable and probably unmentored....". The song is themed around the word "b*tch" but this specific line  talks about the misconceptions that children may pick up because they have access to the internet and all it's public information. Listen to it, if you want to find out more about what I mean.

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