I’m not sure how many people remember this Geico commercial where the stack of money was always looking at someone, and then the music would start to play. “I always feel like somebody’s watching meeeeeeee and I have no privacy. Woah Oh Oh.” I would use to laugh every time I saw this commercial because I thought the idea was funny and the stack of money was cute. However, after digging more into this Network Narrative and surveillance topics, I’m not sure how cute the money is anymore.
I never considered myself addicted to social media or the internet itself. However, after doing two days of the Data Detox (Link Here) that we were asked to do, it turns out I’m glued to the internet more than I thought. “Addicted” is such a strong word to use but maybe it fits the picture. Working backward here, Day 2 talked about the use of Google and the many products that come with it. I was happy to discover that Google was actually not the BFF I didn’t know I had. What I found interesting was how I could delete activity on Google, which I didn’t think was possible. What I learned from Day 2 was that I could use a different search engine and install a more private-friendly browser. That’s something we’re not told to do nor have I ever thought about it. Now for Day 1, I was surprised. We were asked to clear our history browser and search ourselves. When I did so, I was expecting more information to come up. Why? Because I do have social media accounts. When I did my research on myself and my image, I noticed that only my Youtube page came up. I have a Youtube page with over 5,000 subscribers and over three million views; so the only images associated with my name were the images from those videos. (Which are only lyric videos.) There was nothing “alarming” that came up. I didn’t see my picture of myself that came up.
The last thing I did was search for myself from the internet of the past. (Nothing…no results found.) During the first few minutes of the Data Detox, I was uncomfortable, which I found ironic. I should want to have a cleaner and healthier web life, but I was skeptical. After a while, it felt like a weight was lifted off my shoulders. Believe it or not, my brain didn’t feel as “cloudy” anymore either. These exercises pushed me to realize that maybe my digital self or my online social life was slipping out of control. I can’t wait to do more of the detox activities.
Moving on to the Do Not Track Documentary (Documentary Link Here), I will be honest, that just scare the…out of me. My exact notes during this video were, “Oh Nah…in the beginning, knowing where I am and what kind of laptop I’m using.” I almost stopped watching the video and saving it for another day because that really creeped me out. However, I wanted to hear what the rest of the video had to say. Watching episode one spoke about the surveillance economy. The question was asked, “What do we know about them?”, Since they know everything about us. Looking at that from a wider lens, it’s something I had not thought about before. I don’t know anything about Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, or Google. Oddly enough, they know everything about me. They know my interests, dislikes, favorite type of dogs, and more. I agree with the mission of this documentary, which is to track the tracker. It seems scary and unorthodox at first, but this is something that could benefit not only myself but others about our digital selves.
Analyzing my Twitter (Link Here) self was probably my favorite activity I did this week. Below are the screenshots from my Twitter activity:
It’s interesting to see your activity for anything because of how unaware you are of what you do daily. From my chart, it shows that I am most active on Tuesday evenings between 5-6 pm and Mondays around 5 pm. I didn’t know that there was a particular language that’s used on Twitter and I’m still trying to figure out what the language part means. Twitter activity is something that I would like to keep using after this class to see if my activity continues or decrease over the next few months after the semester is over. This ties into exploring the tracking of myself online activity that we had to do.
I chose Am I Unique? (Website Link Here ). Honestly, I only wanted that because I thought the title was intriguing. On the side, there was an option to look at my fingerprint. Once I clicked on it, the site told me that I was traceable, which made me extremely uncomfortable. This made me second guess how I live online and how I can be safer on the internet. The Data Detox is definitely an excellent start to that.
Besides the fingerprint, viewing the other analysis that the site gave me I thought was fascinating, which are the screenshots shown below.
I don’t want to jump too far ahead of myself, but I am started to get a better understanding of how Network Narrative works. This week was a push outside of my comfort zone and a great learning opportunity as well. I can’t wait to discuss this in class, and I look forward to next week’s activities!
The DDAs (DDA Link Here) that I did this week was fun but also very reflective. Check them out!
Check out my other recent blogs!