M5.1 Guiding Questions

Throughout the past year, I have engaged substantially in online activities, both production and consumption. I’m sure this is probably the case for many others as well, as online activities constitute much of what we do on a day-to-day basis.  In terms of production and consumption online outside of this course, I have been very active.

When it comes to consumption, I am active online on almost a daily basis. I frequent sites like Twitter, Facebook, as well as many other sports sites on a daily basis. These sites are where I get most of my information from, in terms of daily news, sports updates, and other various news stories that are popular at any given time. 

Furthermore, I am active online is other ways, such as XBOX live and Netflix, both of which I utilize though my XBOX itself. This is somewhat of a different way of being active online, however it is an interesting way of connecting with others, especially friends as it offers a way to play various games with or against your friends, while communicating the entire time.  Production is a much different story for me however, as I do not produce very much online content, especially in the last year. The amount of tweeting and posting on Facebook I do has gone down in the last several years, as I use social media as more of a way of gaining information rather than producing it. 

My reasoning behind this is more of a personal reason, as my group of friends has gotten smaller and closer since high school, thus my need for posting on social media has declined somewhat. While I am not against the idea of posting, as I still post the occasional tweet or picture, it is simply a case of my desired use of these sites shifting over the years. 

The one fear of posting online that I do have, however, is that once something is posted it is out there forever. In my early years of social media this was not a concern of mine, as I obtaining my image is not as important as it is nowadays as I get closer to beginning my career. If something were to get out in a negative way about me, it could very much affect me for a long time in the future, so the negatives outweigh the positives in this scenario.

This producer-consumer dynamic is also prevalent in terms of building cultural commons against the rules of restrictive copyright law. Online activities often have to deal with copyright issues, something many users face difficulties with. Whether it be with youtube videos, or posting streams to television, infringement is something both producers and consumers must deal with. Furthermore, users can also face issues of this nature on sites like Twitter and Facebook as well. When posting anything that has copyright attached to it, users can face problems.

It is important for consumers and producers of media to be aware of this in cultivating communities that are protected against things of this nature. 

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