Some things that resonated with me from this week's readings, in bullet form:
- "transparency is so chic"
- navigating multiplicty
- polysemy (coded communications for different audiences)
- "I only tweet anything I'd say in a lobby"
- authenticity (itself and as a social construct)
- situationalism (people react to situations based on context)
I guess for me, and probably for lots of people with online identities, we are all situationalists. At work, we have one way of being, another with our friends, another still for classmates, and especially a different persona online. That word, "polysemy" will be my generative word this week, thinking about coding our speech for different audiences.
I have a lot of thoughts about online vs. "real life" spheres. I think many of us are careful at work, guarded until we know we can trust like-minded folks. I think that there are a lot of ways that we utilize mutliplicity to protect our work selves when we're not in a position of power, or not in a position of financial indepence (also a position of power).
I'm sure we'll have many different discussions about this, but I'm different at work than I am in class, and I'm different online, as well. I think all of those differences (multiplicities) are examples of how much we are willing to let others get to know our real "authentic" selves. Online it is easier to be the liberal activist, animal rescue, existentialist, bookish feminist, because there are more people like me online, who I follow, and who follow me---it is "safer" to be my more authentic self because of some vague anonymity and the overwhelming volume of the posts on the site on which we post. It is easy to lose my specific signal in the noise, if that makes sense. At work I find it's smarter to be polite and genial, and not really talk about myself, because the people at work for the most part do not share my interests. My class self is somewhere on a continuum between the two.
Here's a little gif set from one of my favorite TV shows (30 Rock) that speaks to both my online and my graduate student self: