What is Digital Diversity?

In our Digital Diversity class, we learned a lot about different types of technology and diversity. We were forced to think critically throughout the course. In my movie I wanted to state my thesis that digital diversity is a combination of ways people use technology and how social networks are being used by people so they can voice their opinion or stay in touch with family and friends. Facebook is used for media and social reasons as well as other social networking sites like twitter. However, I really wanted to stress how the digital divide is affecting the world.  In the books we read, one of the main focuses was the digital divide.  According to the book, “Technicolor,” by Alondra Nelson, “the digital divide isn’t just about personal computers; it’s about training, access, education, content, telecommunications infrastructure, and more.” We discussed e-waste and how it affects other countries, along with the one computer per child program that was established.

Another focus was how in the United States there is a divide between social classes. According to the book, Charles Ess in, Digital Media Ethics, “the disparity between rich and poor is growing not shrinking, both within such countries as the United States, and between the rich and poor nations of the world.” There is a divide with the U.S. and other nations because of our advanced technology. In the U.S. programs such as, Community Technology Centers, are being created in the low income areas so poorer people will have an opportunity to learn about technology and gain the hands on experience. Digital diversity is the contribution of the digital divide.

Work Cited

“Digital Altars / Spiritual.org.” ¸.·´¯`·.’ Daniel R Leyva .¸.·´¯`·.¸. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.danielleyva.com/content/xxx/proposal/proposal.html&gt;

“Teens Using Laptop Computer [SMP0011433] Stock Photos | Royalty Free | Royalty Free Photos VisualPhotos.com.” Stock Photos | Royalty Free | Royalty Free Photos VisualPhotos.com. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.visualphotos.com/image/2×3744168/teens_using_laptop_computer&gt;

Mould, James. “Brit Teenagers Fans of Natural Beauty – Natural Skin Care News.” Natural Skin Care, Natural Make Up, Natural Hair Care, Natural Shampoo & Organic Beauty Products. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.mypure.co.uk/natural-teens-news/brit-teenagers-fans-of-natural-beauty-id19324416&gt;.

From the Community Blog: America’s Digital Divide – GOOD Blog – GOOD.” GOOD Home Page – GOOD. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.good.is/post/from-the-community-blog-americas-digital-divide/&gt;.

Girl Talk- Don’t Stop

Girl Talk- Like this

B, Steve. “Digital Diversity.” Interview. 27 Apr. 2011. Print.

L, Vanessa. “Digital Diversity.” Interview. 1 May 2011. Print.

BiggerBoat: Entertainment Advertising Network. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.biggerboat.com/&gt;.

Facebook, the Child (and Father) of a Revolution «.” Web. 05 May 2011. http://namedropping.wordpress.com/2011/02/20/the-facebook-revolution/

“Internet.” Google. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://lukefifteencommunications.com/images/internet3.jpg&gt;.

“Digital Divide Old.” Google. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.corante.com/mooreslore/archives/images/digital divide 2.jpg>.

“Community Technology Centers.” Google. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.africacircleofhope.org/images/visitors_explore_t.jpg&gt;.”Digital Divide.” Google. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.africacircleofhope.org/images/visitors_explore_t.jpg&gt;.

“One Lap Top.” Google. Web. 05 May 2011. <http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://tulane.edu/news/newwave/images/090409_katie_chelsea-B373AC_1.jpg&gt;.

Digital Media Ethics, Charles Ess, Polity, 2009

Media Technicolor: Race, Technology, and Everyday Life, edited by Alondra Nelson and Thuy Linh N. Tu, New York University Press, 2001


Group Project

It was difficult working with my group starting the project. We had a lot of ideas,It was difficult working with my group starting the project. We had a lot of ideas, but we did not know how we wanted to put our ideas in a project. We had people in our group that were not comfortable presenting in front of the class, and we had people that wanted to present in front of people. Because of this we had to come to a compromise in the group. Our first idea was to do a documentary type movie where we went around and interviewed people on our topic, stereotypes in video games. However, this step required a lot of attention and time put in by our whole group. We also thought about doing a regular PowerPoint presentation to get our point across with information about our subject. After seeing the first week of presentations, we thought the bar was raised and because of it we had to put together a better presentation, which was our final presentation. Videos such as, Game Over: Gender, Race & Violence in Video Games  helped us critical think. Now that we have completed the assignment, we could have brainstormed a little harder to come up with some better ideas.

As a group we met about once or twice a week to talk about our presentation and to catch up on everyone’s progress. If we would have made our meetings more productive I feel we would have created a better presentation.


Always Connected: Media Use

When looking at my chart I have noticed that IPod use takes up most of my media time. I would have guessed this due to the fact that I listen to a lot of music. I am always on the go and have music in my ears playing most of the time. As a matter of fact I am listening to music as I am typing this blog. In his book, Watkins says “Multitasking while doing homework, a common behavior these days, can contribute to poor academic performance.” I guess in a way, it can contribute to poor academic performance. I use a large amount of media throughout my day as seen in the chart above. Small stuff like texting, listening to music, tweeting messages, and using applications on my cell phone takes a little time out the day. But looking at all the time put into it from the time I wake up to the time I fall asleep, I noticed that the little time I do put into texting, tweeting, listening to music, and talking on my phone adds up. The level of media use continues to grow like in the report, “Always Connected”: Young Children’s Media Use on the Rise. Watkins also did a survey that says college students are heavy users of multiple media, “They multitask with just about every media they use- the Internet, music, television, and books and magazines. A decisive majority, 95 percent, listens to music either most or some of the time when using the computer.”

Another reason I feel I am always using media like my phone, internet, YouTube, and text messaging besides entertainment is because I like to be informed. I feel that if I am not able to surf the web, or talk to people I will not get informed with news or whatever is going on beyond the room I am in. In chapter eight of “The Young and the Digital” in a study done in 2008, one of the students said “having a cell phone is the key to my social life,” in a way I agree with what they are saying. When I feel like I want to escape the world I abandon my phone at home or turn it off. But knowing I have access to technology is security.


Response to Mr. Smith

Mr. Zadie Smith,

A lot of the points you brought up in your article were good. I feel the same way you feel about Facebook and how, in a sense “everything shrinks” the comment you made about individual characters, friendships, language and sensibility were very accurate when it comes to “Generation Facebook.” It is a scary thought but people are starting to live their lives on the internet. In The Social Network, Sean Parker, played by Justin Timberlake, did say “We lived on farms, then we lived in cities and now we’re gonna live on the internet.” In reality, we do live on the internet. Everyday communication is via emails, people don’t even use libraries for research anymore because of the wonderful search engine Google. As technology continues to advance people will continue to become victims of desensitization. Facebook was created so people will be able to stay connected, connected to people who they will not talk to outside of the internet. The internet gives people the opportunity to be whoever they want to be, another place for someone to pretend. It’s another opportunity for people to become social and socialize without having to go in the world to socialize. Facebook not only became the biggest social network, but gave other companies the idea of connecting people. Yahoo! created profiles for so people will be able to connect, along with Google who was able to expand to YouTube and create ways people can work on the same projects (Google Docs). Mark Zuckerberg knows how much of an influence Facebook has on the internet, “The web is at a really important turning point right now. Up until recently, the default on the web has been that most things aren’t social and most things don’t use your real identity. We’re building toward a web where the default is social.” Social networks are doing a great job of doing so by targeting the youth, “Online services like AIM were tailor-made for teenagers transitioning toward their own peer networks and greater independence from adults,” the book The Young & The Digital” expressed. These social network sites are capturing the minds of the youth which are very impressionable demonstrated by video games and television. The Young & The Digital also backs up my statement, “it strongly suggests that television’s grip on young viewers is not nearly as compelling as the online platforms like social-network sites and online games that are daily destination for teens and young adults.” The video below supports my argument about how social networks and the internet are expanding.


Desensitizing Stereotypes in Video Games

When thinking about stereotypes displayed in video games one may think of how the creator portrayed African Americans, Mexican Americans, or how dominate a white male is. The stereotypes in video games are beyond the few I just named. I have found articles that show the distinction between male and females and how the men are shown as masculine while females are usually the ones that needs to be rescued. “Gender and Racial Stereotyped in Popular Video Games,” is a study that discusses the how women are portrayed as well as men. It also discusses the different race stereotypes depict in video games. This study was backed up by another study I found Gender Differences in Video Game Characters’ Roles, Appearances, and Attire as Portrayed in Video Game Magazines,” which theorize that video games shape people’s minds and perceptions towards gender roles. I have also found an article that creates a theory of how creators portray people from foreign countries as the enemy.  In the article “New Video Games Renew Cold War Stereotypes,” two games “Battlefield: Bad Company 2” and “Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Conviction,” released three weeks within eachother depict Russians as the enemy. Foreigners from Russia avoided playing these games because of the depiction of Russians as the enemy. With all of the stereotypes portrayed in video games, my question is, do video games desensitize people to subject to these stereotypes?

Next is LBGT’s in video games


The Digital Divide

“E-waste” is electronic waste. In places like Ghana and areas of China, there is a lot of toxic waste where anything that is electronic are mostly dumped. The United States take old computers and electronics, which some are broken and some work, and “donate them to countries like Ghana. When they find these countries find no use in the donations they get, they throw them in “digital dumping grounds” where they are burned and sometimes picked apart. In a way it helps peoples that live in the surrounding areas by providing jobs and by melting the scraps they were able to collect copper and iron and sell.

These countries became flooded with e-waste because of the digital divide. With the United States advancement in technology, countries like Ghana have been left behind. According to the book, “Technicolor,” by Alondra Nelson, “the digital divide isn’t just about personal computers; it’s about training, access, education, content, telecommunications infrastructure, and more.” These countries are lacking all of the above, which is why they get “donations”. In a since, with the e-waste being exploited in these countries, the divide between the rich and the poor will still be there. Charles Ess in, Digital Media Ethics, says “the disparity between rich and poor is growing not shrinking, both within such countries as the United States, and between the rich and poor nations of the world.”

The divide is continuing to spread, and affecting the health of the workers. For example, the movie talks about how in the port of Hong Kong and surrounding areas, there is are miles of e-waste. The toxic waste is contributing to the poisoning of the workers mostly women. One of the workers in India understands that he is ruining his life, but he is making the sacrifice so his children would have better lives. Though the e-waste is affecting health it is providing income for the people in the countries. In the article, Growing Concern over India’s e-waste, from BBC news, the author talks about how e-waste is hazardous and affects the health of workers, but it is providing income.


2 In 1 Sides to Violence in Video Games

When debating about how violent video games cause social desensitization, a one would be quick to pick a side to debate. “Yes, violent video games cause social desensitization,” or “No, violent video games does not cause social desensitization.” According to the book, Digital Media Ethics, by Charles Ess, this approach to debating is, exclusive either/ors. The exclusive either/ or approach means, “one thing can be true- or the other thing can be true- but both can’t be true simultaneously.” It is natural for humans to take this approach when approaching two conflicting issues, “There are two particular problems here that are important for us to straighten out from the outset. One is the logical matter. However tempting and common it is for us to think in terms of exclusive either /ors…” Though exclusive either/ or is a great approach to take, it puts us in a corner and forces us to single out the other point.

However, by using the inclusive either/ or, one would be able to come to a conclusion that there is a truth to both sides. An inclusive either/ or includes (rather than excludes) the possibility of two things being true simultaneously. Some say violent video games desensitize people and some say it doesn’t, but why can’t both be true? In the video, Insert Coin: Part 5- Violence in Video Games, we are able to hear from both sides.

There has been research that has tested children playing violent video games and children that were playing non-violent video games, and the children that were playing the violent video games were in fact desensitized to violence verses the children that were playing non-violent video games. There has been tests that have proven violent video games desensitize people, but there have also been tests that violent video games do not desensitize people. In the article, New Study Finds Violent Games Do Not Desensitize Players, Holly Bowen, a PhD candidate at Ryerson University, conducted a study in which they believe “violent videogames is not associated with differences in players’ emotional memory or their responses to negative stimuli.”

There are two beliefs to this, but the only way to really test this out is to test people who were not exposed to any other type of media or violence such as, television, racism, music, etc. I am in between with my argument to either side unless research was conducted on people who have not been exposed to violence in any other form.



Facebook & Revolutionaries

In the video “Cairo’s Facebook Flat,” the young Egyptian revolutionaries stepped out and voiced their opinions which caused them to have family issues. They are not afraid to revolt against the government even if they were arrested and tortured. One technique they took, because of technology and their resources, was videotaping protesters testimonies and uploading them to Facebook for the rest of Egypt to view. One of the activist spoke on how the media (Egyptian TV) brain washes everyone watching making it look like these activists are bad guys.

The approaches they are taking by using Facebook and Twitter to market to the rest of Egypt is in-fact using technology as a tool. However, it is not using technology as “just a tool.” Yusuf Bagato, an art student, discussed how Twitter and Facebook started the revolution making it the most important component they have. “Most of the youth in Egypt have Facebook accounts, so it is the easiest way to get to them,” Omar El-Shamy expressed.

As to freedom of expression and they way these activist express their beliefs through Facebook, there is an either/ or approach meaning you are either with them or against them and believing what the Egyptian media is showing them on TV.

The cultural assumptions being made about technology and its impact, is the ability to use technology to connect with other people gaining a stronger network and the ability to voice opinion for what’s right. In the video “Friends of the Revolution: Facebook in the News,” 60 Minutes interviewed Wael Ghonim, an internet activist, and how he used Facebook to post information about the police brutality in Egypt. More Facebook users began to share their photos and videos of police brutalities. They began to use Facebook to organize protests in which non of the organizers have ever met in person.

In the “Digital Media Ethics” book, Charles Ess says;

“There is a strong tendency that the technologies of CMC- the computers, networks, and various software applications that make it possible for us to use them to communicate globally- are somehow ‘just tools,’ i.e., somehow neutral media that transparently and without a particular bias allow us to communicate with one another.”

The social networking platforms and the revolution in Egypt were examples of how human beings are using technology to market their views and protest against the media. These social networks made it easy for the revolutionaries to meet up and protest also giving them the availability to meet others with the same political views.


Am I Going to be Penalized?

Sitting down to write this paper, I had no idea what to talk about. I wanted to brows other’s assignments to get ideas of what to write. I thought to myself “what if I took a sentence from everyone’s assignment and put it on my page to create a mash-up.” I didn’t want to do it because I didn’t know if I was going to get a failing grade for it. To me it could be a form of remixing however, to my professor it could be plagiarizing or copying someone else’s work. Well in the movie, RIP: a Remix Manifesto, the main character, Girl Talk, took bits and pieces of other peoples music and mashed them together to create a his own music. Both of these cases raise ethical questions, when is can someone be sued or penalize for sampling? “U.S copyright law is moderately clear with regard to what counts as “fair use” for teaching and research purpose- at least far as printed materials are concerned. In particular, under most circumstances, it is illegal for me to make, say photocopies of an entire book that I would then distribute…” says the author of the book, “Digital Media Ethics,” Charles Ess.

The movie “Guarding the Family Silver,” highlights how the laws that are created with copyrights affect their culture. Guarding the Family Silver, for example, talks about how the artist Maori cannot use her name because it was trademarked in 14 different countries. They also talked about how their culture was being exploited, used in video games and taken and being used for companies can sell products. It wasn’t ethical for these companies to take from this culture however, they were able to do it legally.

People are able to get sued for using someone else’s creativity and combining it with theirs. The rule seems to be, if you copyright it first you will be excused. There are a lot of ethical questions as to who gets to use what in a certain situation. But the law chose who get penalized.



What is WikiLeaks?

I know there are many questions as to what WikiLeaks really is. There are also a lot of us out there in the world who have never even heard of WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks is a worldwide based website that has been in the news recently due to sensitive and classified U.S. information being leaked to the public. According to dictionary.com, Wiki is “a web application that allows anyone visiting a website to edit content on it,” and leaks are “a disclosure of secret, esp. official, information, as to the news media, by an unnamed source.” Therefore, WikiLeaks is a website that allows anyone to post disclosed information about companies, and the U.S. Government, on the internet.

WikiLeaks was created to be a site that would help to lift the veil off of companies and their business practices all around the world. As of late however, WikiLeaks has gotten a hold of highly sensitive information, pictures and video uncovering some of the secrets to the U.S.’s participation in the War in Iraq. The video below will provide much more information as to what WikiLeaks really is.

To really understand WikiLeaks better, it would help to get some background on the man who created this highly controversial site, Julian Assange.


“Video – Breaking News Videos from CNN.com.” CNN.com – Breaking News, U.S., World, Weather, Entertainment & Video News. 11 Jan. 2011. Web. 24 Jan. 2011. http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2010/12/28/ctw.wikileaks.in.review.cnn?iref=allsearch.



Whats Up, my name is Dominique Austin. I am from Seattle, Washington. I transferred to WSU last winter from Highline Community College. I am a currently a senior that is majoring in Economics with a Business option. After I graduate I hope to continue my education at Gonzaga University. My career interest is Human Resource. I hope to obtain a Masters in Organizational Development. Eventually I wish to retire from a Human Resource Director from a private company.