A couple of months ago, I made a post and quoted a Youtube user who said “This is Internet Wonderland. You can say whatever you want about anything even if you don’t make an idea about what you are talking about.”

I also gave a definition of trolling then. I had to explain what trolling is to a friend recently, checked urbandictionary, and happened to find this awesome definition:

Being a prick on the internet because you can. Typically unleashing one or more cynical or sarcastic remarks on an innocent by-stander, because it’s the internet and, hey, you can.

Guy: “I just found the coolest ninja pencil in existence.”
Other Guy: “I just found the most retarded thread in existence.”

So, if someone pisses you off on the internet, learn to cope with it. Because this is the internet, and, hey, they can, or LEAVE THE INTERNET.

When I turn my personal computer (a desk-top IBM-compatible) on, it makes a little sound. This little sound I sometimes playfully interpret as a cheerful ‘Good morning’ greeting, for the action of bringing my computer to life usually happens first thing in the morning, when I sit down at my desk, a cup of tea at my side, to begin the day’s work. In conjunction with my cup of tea, the sound helps to prepare me emotionally and physically for the working day ahead, a day that will involve much tapping on the computer keyboard and staring into the pale blue face of the display monitor, when not reading or looking out the window in the search for inspiration. I am face-to-face with my computer for far longer than I look into any human face. I don’t have a name for my personal computer, nor do I ascribe it a gender (although I know some people do; see, for example, Stone, 1992:81). However, I do have an emotional relationship with the computer, which usually makes itself overtly known when something goes wrong. Like most other computer users, I have experienced impatience, anger, panic, anxiety and frustration when my computer does not do what I want it to, or breaks down. I have experienced files that have been lost, printers failing to work, the display monitor losing its colour, disks that can’t be read, a computer virus, a breakdown in the system that stopped me using the computer or email. I live in fear that a power surge will short-circuit my computer, wiping the hard disk, or that the computer will be stolen, and I assiduously make back-up copies of my files. For some years now (since I first learnt how to use word-processing package in 1986), I have relied on computers to write. I have written whole articles and books without printing out a hard copy until the penultimate draft. I cannot imagine how it must have been in the ‘dark ages’ when people had to write PhDs and books without using a computer. I can type much faster than I write with a pen. A pen now feels strange, awkward and slow in my hand, compared to using a keyboard. When I type, the words appear on the screen almost as fast as I formulate them in my head. There is for me, a seamless transition of thought to word on the screen.

from; Lupton, Deborah.  “The Embodied Computer/User.”  Cyberspace/Cyberbodies/Cyberpunk: Cultures of Technological Embodiment.  Eds. Mike Featherstone and Roger Burrows.  London: Sage, 1995.  97-112.

From the official conference web site:

Sex 2.0What is Sex 2.0?

Sex 2.0 will focus on the intersection of social media, feminism, and sexuality. How is social media enabling people to learn, grow, and connect sexually? How is sexual expression tied to social activism? Does the concept of transparency online offer new opportunities or present new roadblocks — or both? These questions, and many more, will be addressed within a safe, welcoming, sex-positive space.

Respecting the confidentiality and protecting the identities of participants who wish to maintain a degree of anonymity will be a top priority at Sex 2.0.

When? April 12, 2008
Where? Spring4th Center, 728 Spring St., Atlanta, GA
» Map of nearby hotels
How much? $10

Note: We will be following the unconference model, which means everyone is a participant rather than a passive attendee. This is YOUR event!

I was fooling around on Facebook the other day, and I came across this hilarious “Marketplace ad.”

Facebook account for sale

Especially the bit about the number of wall posts and poking reputation is very witty. Though, I’d prefer to call the ad title “Online identity for sale”

CybercultureHad this thing in my mind for a while. The title of this post sounds too wide and generic. And the word cyberculture is a lot more than cyberculture jargon or how technology shapes and (re)creates a new (form of) culture. Anyway, however, the sole reason I’m posting this is a quote from a Youtube user’s comment on some video. Unless you are not familiar with internet slang, what that user was doing is trolling. Troll(ing) is, to steal from Wikipedia: “An Internet troll, or simply troll in Internet slang, is someone who intentionally posts controversial or contrary messages in an on-line community such as an on-line discussion forum with the intention of baiting users into an argumentative response.” Anyway, this Youtube user says:

This is Internet Wonderland. You can say whatever you want about anything even if you don’t make an idea about what you are talking about.

When it comes to Internet, the phrase freedom of speech has more connotations than it does in real life. Let’s think it this way first: Suppose you were to read this post in a book. You had no chance to reply me here. But now, thanks to the internet and interactivity, you can post a reply and say whatever you want (does not mean there’s no censorship on my part tho:) Anyway, this might sound trivial, but the thing is, the fact that you can reply to posts [whether on (video/photo)blogs, portals, forums, etc] is also related to what Roland Barthes calls the death of the author: We no longer have the authorial power that puts a distance between him/herself. Now, everyone’s an author (or, author is an ugly word: rather blogger, forum user, commentator, etc). We can now respond to someone else in seconds after we see the post, we can disagree, flame the poster and so on. Also, on forums, there is no hierarchy of a thread. The most recent post gets to the top, or a recent reply bumps the post to the top. If it’s old, it’s usually only accessable through search (engines). So, on the internet, it doesn’t really matter if you are Lacan or Alper (that’s me!).

Similar with search engines… I don’t know if they changed it yet as it has been criticized because it was a hierarchical way to do so (or even canonical, maybe), but Google (I don’t know how other search engines work) uses Pagerank, which prioritizes the pages that have more links from other pages to show up before all others in search queries. In other words, your little personal homepage does not have a chance against a huge portal. Compare this idea with small newspapers/magazines and big media companies. Another thing is, you can easily (if you got the money) exploit this Pagerank system by paying companies to increase your Pagerank, and boom, your page is at the top with certain keywords. So, it’s seen undemocratic (democracy is overrated anyway).

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