When I first read the blog assignment for this week, I kind of got excited! (Is this weird? haha) But in all honesty, I really think anonymity on the internet needs to be talked about and discussed because not only is it confusing, but it also entertaining. The Internet allows us to manipulate the way we represent ourselves online, which allows us to change the views and attitude towards someone or something. When I first think of anonymity and trolling online, I think of dating websites that allow so many people to "BEEF" up their online profiles. When I use the term beef up, I mean to add on extra things to their profile that allows them to look more "attractive" and "personable" online. Has anyone seen the movie Sex Drive? I watched this movie recently on my Netflix account and it had me laughing the whole time. The basic plot to the film is an 18 year old male lies to this girl saying that he plays football, works out, etc.... But when she asks him to meet up with her, he panics because he know he lied about most of his information in his profile. That is why people choose to remain anonymous online. They are ashamed of their lives, so they makeup some type of "avatar" for themselves. Have you guys heard the song "Online" by Brad Paisley? If you haven't heard it yet, you really should. The whole song talks about how this guy lies to all these women online making them think he is a stud but in reality, he lives in his parents basement. Here is the link to the song! http://www.cowboylyrics.com/lyrics/paisley-brad/online-22297.html
Trolling was first discovered and defined in the late 1980s says Mattathias Schwartz from his article titled "The Trolls Among Us." Schwartz described troll as "to denote some who intentionally disrupts online communities." After I read this, I thought of certain websites that people go to on purpose just to disrupt someone's post or article. Right away I thought of the Detroit Free Press because there has been multiple times when I have been on their site reading an article, and the same person comments on everyone one of the author's articles say how bad they are and how stupid the author actually is. I think this affects the other comments of other people and it could harm the reputation of the writer for the article. Other sites I thought of was of course social networking sites like Facebook, but also Youtube. There are a lot of Youtube videos that receive TONS AND TONS of negative comments. You can go to any video with at least 20 comments and find at least one derogatory comment. Actually, I was on a sports nutrition site yesterday looking up reviews on a certain product and someone commented saying stuff that happened to them while on it but it didn't even relate to sports nutrition or the product. It was obvious that he was only doing this to cause pain towards the creators of the supplement. Here is the site that I found this from, http://www.supplementcritic.com/nitrix-reviews/
The video I picked on Youtube to analyze the comments was one of the hottest sports videos on the internet right now. The video is called Johnny Mac Trick Shot Quarterback. It consists of the starting quarterback for the Uconn Huskies performing different throwing trick shots. It is an incredible video because of all the time and practice they must of done to create this video. However when you go to the comments on the video, most of them consist of people denying that this video is real and are convinced that the video was massively edited. I truly believe that this video is real and that it took a lot of dedication and hard work to create it. Most of the usernames of the users who commented on the video are listed as something random and you can't tell who exactly commented on it. Most of the negative comments are, of course, anonymous. Here is the link to the incredible video and also the negative comments regarding the video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0WMd0Y6hIw
The advantages of remaining anonymous online has to be the hidden identity like I stated before in this blog. It allows for someone to be a COMPLETELY different person online. They can control who they are and what their interests consist of. The disadvantages of remaining anonymous online is not showing your real identity and letting everyone know who you actually are. Good examples would be the negative comments. They are willing to post negative comments about someone or something, but they aren't willing to post their actual name or account. I believe people are so comfortable saying things online because it allows them to say something to someone without seeing their exact reaction to the statement. This can include facial expressions, vocal, or body expressions. This makes me think back to times before text messaging was so popular. Most people didn't talk when they were younger face to face. I personally did a lot of my conversations on AOL Instant Messenger. It is text messaging on the computer pretty much. This is what allowed me to be more social at a young age. However, if AIM or texting never existed, I feel like the social world would be a COMPLETELY different.