Youtube as a Social Network: The workings of an online community

This paper argues that YouTube is a social network and to do so, it is imperative to first understand what a social network is. A social network is where a service or platform allows for a group of individuals to create or sustain personal and business connections through comments and posts shared on the platform. (Mclean, 2014) In the 21st century however, the term social network is used for services or platforms that reside ‘online’ and that require an internet connection to access. With them Read more [...]

The Transient Nature of Identity Online

An identity formed online is more transient due to its application within an online community and the adaptable nature of a Web 2.0 environment. Virtual communities undermine the original definition of a community; the virtual environment has also undermined the original definition of an identity. According to Donath (1996), the norm is: one body, one identity. Though the self may be complex and mutable over time and circumstance, the body provides a stabilizing anchor” (Donath, 1996). This paper Read more [...]

Safe and Unsafe Online Communities for People with Issues Surrounding Body Image

Abstract There are many online communities dedicated to helping people achieve their ideal body or learn to love the body they have, but are these communities safe? Negative body image is something that many people have to grapple with in their life especially young women (Kostanski & Gullone, 1998). People come in so many shapes and sizes, the world is full of beauty, even if the media encourages us to believe that beauty is only found in a few lucky people. This can create a lot of stress Read more [...]

Forming Identities for Individuals and Communities through Interactive Social Gaming

Abstract This paper explores Internet Gaming Disorder (IGD), Massive-Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPG), Social Media Gaming, Streaming, and E-Sports, and the affects that these platforms may have on day-to-day offline (non-Internet) life. It will make reference to 23 peer-reviewed articles to argue that online gaming has provided an escape from reality into a world where players are able to mould their identities, build communities, and experience interactive virtual realities with Read more [...]

Social Media Bubbles Reinforce Negative Behaviour

PDF Copy – NET204_Final Conference_Lamerichs,Sebastian Abstract This paper explores the use of “filter bubbles” (or just “bubbles”) on the Internet,  referring to the practice of using metadata for each individual user of an online service such as a social media platform or search engine, and constructing personalised results for that user that align with their existing interests, intended to increase engagement on those platforms. While the concept of filter bubbles culturally is not Read more [...]

Minecraft Servers are Providing Safe and Nurturing Communities for Young People

Abstract The global popularity and influence of online video games has been the subject of debate for nearly three decades, often with the claim of video games promoting aggressive and anti-social behaviour. Minecraft is an online multiplayer game played by over 74 million active monthly players across over 10,000 live servers. These servers are often designed, built and operated by volunteer staff called administrators. It is through the rules set by these administrators, combined with their Read more [...]

Using Manufactured Identities in Online Social Media

Abstract The use of pseudonyms and personas when creating profiles within online social media serves to provide many vulnerable people with a way to safely have an online presence without the fear of harassment or real world threats. The rise in the number of hacking incidents involving identity theft combined with a growing number of reports of fake online identities being used for malicious and criminal intent, has led to companies such as Facebook implementing security measures such as the Read more [...]