Thursday, April 17, 2008

Seminar Evaluation

I noticed a lot of people were centered on questioning whether the experience was healthy, rather than actually exploring the possibilities within those games. I don't actually play any of the games discussed, but because I've had experience in the past, and observed people who have excelled at those games, I realize that Jenkins makes a valid point when urging people to examine the potential stored in media culture.

I think the issue of ethics is an interesting philosophical concern. The internet is a curious thing, but it completely tears down what we know as reality. If nothing can hurt you, and your actions cannot have a direct impact on others, then what is the point of self-censure? And it raises another question: CAN you have a direct impact on others and vice versa?

Like in "Rape in Cyberspace", is it okay for an individual to "get his kicks" off of impersonating other people and making them appear to do dirty things? Or does this constitute rape? Is it okay to gain pleasure at the expense of others? I find it a strange play of utilitarian dynamics.

On the other hand, I think there is much to be gained from an online experience. First off, it broadens the mind. Even if there is no other positive benefit to immersing oneself in the online community, just the fact that such an experience would expand one's limit of mind, would be a worthwhile goal. Additionally, there are skills that can be gained from an online experience. Whether they be "good" or "bad": communication, identification, appearance, self-management, self-censure, manipulation, philanthropy, etc. These are all aspects that can be explored without repercussion in such an environment.

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