It was a thought-provoking process viewing my classmates’ posts, especially after reading Luna’s and Jasmine’s posts. I found that I better understood myself with their visual examples, knowing in terms of the category I fell into. Diving deeper, their posts enlightened me about the pitfalls of being an extreme Digital Visitor or Resident.
Luna’s statement resonated with me, by concluding that:
it’s best to maintain a neutral ground when it comes to using the Web
She pointed out that there are drawbacks of a Digital Visitor by not soaking in the benefits of the Web. In contrast, as a Digital Resident, there are also drawbacks by being too reliant on the Web.
Reflecting on this issue, I agree with her view that it would be beneficial to maintain a healthy balance by not being at the extremes. This is possible due the framework I presented in my last post, showing that people can have both attributes.
Jasmine’s personal examples have reminded me of my activities on the Web, reinforcing my perception as a Digital Resident. For one, I share my life with friends on Facebook and Instagram. Also, I do not keep a physical calendar with marked birthdays of my friends. I am guilty of relying on Facebook’s birthday alerts to wish acquaintances a ‘Happy Birthday’.
(Picture Source: Cartoon by Randy Glasbergen)
While it seems that digital residency has become a more popular notion in today’s increasingly digitalized world, I feel that sometimes we need to critically examine if too much online engagement is good for us. In extreme cases, Digital Residents’ reliance on the Internet can be quite worrying. What if being on the Internet too much actually impairs our social abilities to communicate corporeally? Hopefully in the future, there would still be value in holding real life conversations when compared to online conversations.