Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Pertaining to our online structure, I do not think this is a very sufficient way to have a conversation. Although it gives me more time to think through what the message is, I do not feel as involved in the discussion. Also, this blog is a horrible way to communicate because it definitely does not define the possible multiple conversations that can now occur between the group. It is strictly linear in total postings, whereas other "threads" provide a heirarchical structure to provide visual aid and allow us to select the conversation we wish to follow. Topical divisions are not the only problem, since I have a hard time actually seeing each message division. I do not know how many message total there are, who posted them, etc. without scrolling and analyzing the format to see each division.

This leads more into central control with communities. It was mentioned about censorship being a possible issue by online community "gods," but what we seem to skip over is that no matter what we do, there are always underlying rules. "Do unto others as you would have done unto you" or something along those lines, we use these rules to engage with people, and each community has to express how to engage with each other. Since the "god" literally created that community for people to voluntarily join, these restrictions are used in a good constructive way (at least I think so). These powers can be abused, yes, but then you just go to another community or build your own. The fact that you can build your own is the real beauty of online communities.

Back to my original train of thought, I do prefer our in class discussions a lot more because I can see a lot more meaning to an individual's message. I do not feel provoked to answer these online messages, even though it is to my advantage because it is not as spontaneous. I reiterate, however, the structure is bad, and if it was laid out differently I might be more inclined to participate. I hope this answers a few questions.

In peace,

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