Monday, May 21, 2007

Public vs. private versions of you having a mildy embarrassing scrap

Charlie Brooker: I'm socially inept, but I joined Facebook anyway | The Guardian | Guardian Unlimited: "Being on Facebook involves submitting yourself to cheerful, yet merciless surveillance. Your friends can automatically see more or less everything you're doing - who else you're making friends with, which groups you've joined, and so on - and vice versa."

A nice little article about web 2.0 and privacy. We're encouraged to open ourselves up to the world... to share and collaborate. What if we don't really want to but feel obliged to? Expressive privacy invaded? Dunno! But it seems there's nowhere to hide our social ineptitude. Online, offline... wherever you are, that same ol' private version of you will stand behind the public version rolling their eyes and doing their best embarrassed teenager with parents impression. I've always thought that to get something out of online communication you had to give a little bit of yourself into it. Give a little, get a lot back. But, web 2.0 takes that one step further. You not only have to give a little bit you actually have to give quite a lot. You have to give a little bit of your friends. Your creativity. Your thoughts. Make a mistake and a big ol' audience are out there with baited breath, waiting to see if the safety net catches you or if you splat to the floor. Reality TV meets internet? If I'd wanted to be on Big Brother, I'd have queued in the rain for an audition with 'Hi Mum' cards stashed up my jumper. Interactivity for all. But what if not everyone's up for that particular challenge?

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