Topic 1: Reflection

For Topic 1 I was asked to; Explain the concept of digital “visitors” and “residents” – a concept in which I had no prior knowledge of I quickly found myself out of my depth. However, upon completion I felt I had gained a near perfect understanding of the concept and there was nothing more to learn… (said no one ever!)

I was shocked to see how I had merely scraped the surface within my blog and through reading the blogs of my fellow colleagues my depth of understanding was subsequently emphasized allowing me to gain a much broader scope of the topic.

Firstly, within Mary’s post she used her Twitter handle as an example of a person’s online identity something I had originally thought would be a perfect example, however upon further reading I began to question the parameter of a person’s residency status when privacy settings were maxed out. For example; when set to “only me” disabling the ability for a person to search for you within the platform are we really a “resident”? Mark Zuckerberg expressed the same concern suggesting is it really possible to identify as a resident when hiding your online identity (Zimmer, 2010). Such comment lead to further discussion with Mary and through following up on the link she sent it enabled me to gain a better understanding of this issue. Realizing that it is still possible to consider yourself a resident while merely choosing to protect your online identity (Goodwill Community Foundation, 2017).

Furthermore, another key learning point came from my comment on Patricia’s post in which I was able to further draw upon a point I had made with my blog and develop Patricia’s understanding of the Beetham and Sharpe (2010) ‘pyramid model’. The comment lead to a deeper understanding of the model for both of us and I was able to better understand the model as a process rather than the need to label myself as one of two categories, marking the move away from Prensky’s dichotomous notion of “natives” and “immigrants”.

My time on Topic 1 has opened my eyes to the complexities of the digital world however enabled me to gain a clearer more concise understanding on some rather tricky concepts through being able to discuss these issues in more details with my fellow colleagues.

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