Identity Crisis: Reflection

The variety of posts on the topic of multiple online identities shows that for different people, the objectives of using the internet vary dramatically. Thus, advantages for one person can be disadvantageous for another, or vice versa. I realise that the points I made in my original post were very oriented towards the artist. For some, this is not so useful, however I will continue to argue from this perspective as this is what is important to me.

The objectives¬†of the online artist, I believe, should be audience expansion and audience retention. These are important issues in the real world as well as the online world, as I mentioned¬†in my response to Din’s comment on my previous post, in which I covered how maintaining a single, unified identity aids audience retention.

In my comment¬†on Freya’s post, I praised the principle of getting the right content to the right people, though I questioned whether the effectiveness of her suggested deployment of it. This relates to¬†audience expansion – the idea of your content reaching as many people as possible. In her response, she specifically mentioned Twitter, and I would like to use my own experiences on there to argue against having multiple identities.

I regularly tweet not only about music (mine and others’) but also about Formula One and Video Games, among other things and have many¬†followers¬†from each of these communities. The suggestion that I should have these divided across multiple identities, I find, relies on a faulty assumption: that each person is one-dimensional and only cares about one specific interest. This is not true; people are multi-faceted and audiences intersect one another. Even if only 10% of my¬†Formula One followers are interested in¬†my music, it is still a significant and valuable increase in my¬†audience.

On a slightly different note, my interaction with Anna on her blog post centred around privacy and the preservation of image going into the future. I think she raised an excellent point in her response; we should be educating future generations about how their online interactions affect their online identities going into the future, as people are gaining access to the internet earlier and earlier in life. Some of the concepts I am learning and thinking about now, at 20 years old, would have been very valuable to the 14 year old me who was just beginning to build his identity.


References

Burgess, C. (2014). Identity Crisis: How Many Online Identities Should You Have? The Progressive | Composition and Academia Blog of Calum Burgess.

Kent-Muller, A. (2014).¬†TOPIC 2: ‚ÄúWHO AM I THEN?‚Ä̬†Anna Kent-Muller | Digital Humanities enthusiast.

Mumby, F. (2014). Is having several social identities a good thing? FREYA MUMBY.



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