As a society, we’re always so concerned about what other people think of us. Even, or perhaps especially, when we reach celebrity level. One of my classmates posted on our “Tweets from everywhere but Twitter” (#tfebt) tag an article about accidental internet stardom. It gives accounts from the subjects of popular memes, such as Success Kid’s mother and Doge’s owner.
What I found most fascinating is that even when someone’s picture is used for harmless jokes, that person is worried about how it reflects on them. Success Kid, actually named Sam Griner, started after his mother, Laney, posted his picture on Flickr, a popular photo sharing website. The photo features Sam on a beach with a fist clenched by his chest, like he is pumping it up and down. According to the article, someone originally photoshopped another child in the background and captioned it, “I hate sandcastles.” Laney Griner said that she didn’t like how that portrayed Sam as mean-spirited and aggressive. Even when Sam was a baby, she was worried about his reputation as an internet star. Fortunately for her and Sam, the meme eventually evolved into one with a positive connotation.
Another internet celebrity discussed in the article is Doge, also known as “dumb shiba.” The original photo features a shiba inu sitting on a couch with a peculiar look on her face. The dog is named Kabosu, and she lives in Japan with her owner, Atsuko Sato. Sato rescued Kabosu, and enjoyed posting pictures of her online when this photo was taken.
Sato says that at first, she was scared of how the picture took off, because she didn’t find the picture particularly cute. However, she has since come to see it as a good thing. According to the article, Kabosu’s story and fame are inspiring people to adopt rescue dogs like her.
It’s definitely strange how people worry about reputations even at such harmless stages. Nobody today would recognize Sam Griner as Success Kid, and Kabosu is a dog, and dogs don’t usually have reputations to uphold. However, we live in a world where the internet can make or break you, and therefore have to be wary even when the circumstances seem silly.
Last week, I tweeted an article from one of my favorite websites that I found funny, yet strangely relevant to this blog’s theme.
Cracked’s article, written by contributor C. Coville, highlighted some of the strangest and most absurd things people will do when a threat to their reputations online arises. These reactions range from arguing back on the website the review is posted to showing up at the reviewer’s house.
That’s right, I said showing up at a reviewer’s house. Coville cites not one, but two cases of authors going to a reader’s house after that reader gave their work a bad review. One decided to turn around on the front step and walk away, while the other was not so wise. He ended up in a physical confrontation with the reader.
Two restaurant owners severely overreacted to bad reviews when they decided to attempt to ruin a person’s real life reputation. One woman, after her restaurant was spoken ill of online, sent the reviewer’s coworkers an email regarding outlandish sexual preferences under a fake account with the reviewer’s real name. Another restauranteur created a fake blog with the reviewer’s name and wrote posts “confessing” to several illegal activities.
Ironically, these acts of revenge only furthered the bad reputations of those being reviewed. Rather than having a few accounts of a single bad experience that they could easily shrug off, they are now featured in an extremely sarcastic article on a comedy site and being spread around the internet over and over again. That brings back the point I made in my last post, that people who draw negative attention on the web tend to be remembered better. When it comes down to it, sometimes the easiest way to protect your webutation is to stay calm and classy, and roll with the punches.
Before today, there was a time where writing could only be done with a pen or pencil and a piece of paper. The art of writing has changed drastically, and can now be done with such ease on a computer or any other device. This process of writing has not only become evident in many home environment’s, but it has also made its way into our local school communities and environments. In Nancie Atwell’s own blog post, responding to Troy Hick’s article, “Inquiry Live in the Classroom“, students are now able to use and experience word processors and the resources that come with it, such as dictionaries and thesauruses. This a great aspect of how technology can be used in a positive manner in the classroom. This article is related to an article that one of my classmates tweeted about how technology is being used in the classroom to teach and expand learning.
The word “technology” does not only refer to computers and other electronic devices. Technology has been around for centuries and one of the first pieces of technology that were introduced into the classrooms were typewriters. Technology is also apart of professional development. In order for the piece of technology, such as the typewriter or computer, to be used properly in order to portray lessons, teachers and other educators need to be properly educated on how to utilize these pieces of technology in order to guide their students’ overall success inside and outside the classroom.