So Needy

What I really want from this class is to learn more about what it means to be a digital citizen in other realms beyond my own. I come to this class as that millennial stereotype – I grew up on the interwebs with the latest gadget in my pocket courtesy of a techie dad. I’m a slightly active participant in the world of Facebook/Googlization/Snapchat and whatever else ‘defines’ my generation. I’m also a librarian. Not one to deal much in the regular digital world (I work in a non-public domain), but my colleagues and I do plenty involving the digital: we blog, we have an internal social network, we have a wiki, we content-share, do emails, etc. and the list goes on and on. What’s it like for others? What are other aspects I may not know about and should?

One specific aspect is the legality of it all. Privacy is a huuuuuge issue, especially lately with the end of the Patriot Act and the USA Freedom Act and all the hackings going on everywhere. I feel like I only know a little bit about it, when I should know a lot. I’ve also studied plenty about it in library school, but that was years ago and things change like the weather. I know a fair amount about fair use (see what I did there…), since I come across that pretty frequently in my day-to-day job. I hope we get into a more interesting discussion regarding privacy and copyright, especially in the social aspect. From the book world, the latest copyright laws are crazy important with regards to ebooks (UGH, bane of my existence!) to getting foreign material. What does it all mean for us on a broader, more social level? What does digital citizen really mean and really get at? Citizen makes me feel like a part of some community, but then looking at what the digital part of that means.. I feel like I’m in a community whose personal rights have pretty much evaporated.

I’m curious about it all. All of that. The academic version and the personal response. We all live in this digital world in some form or another and I want to hear what other people in other domains think about these issues or what their concerns may be.

One thought on “So Needy

  1. It’s difficult to get at the experience had by others unless you engage directly with them. And that’s not easy. This underlies the problem with the academic studies of…all of this. The minute one goes meta and sees the realm in which “digital citizens” live as some separate thing, the reported experience becomes deeply compromised. But hopefully, the thinking about thinking that is part of the course will yield insights from your fellow travelers…

    During the intellectual property and the “legal issues” segments of the course we will delve into some of the issues of privacy and copyright and hopefully the discussion and connections within the class will get to some of the more interesting stuff you hope for. Unfortunately, it is my experience that most educators don’t understand copyright and fair use very well—and where they think they do, they tend to misunderstand it and approach it from a position of fear and misunderstanding, curtailing their rights even more. So, to some degree, you will be one of the experts in the class. But I hope that we will be able to get through that level and to some of the more intriguing matters such as: ebooks, the implications and complications of ebooks on the publishing and distribution platforms and organizations, the insanity of copyright extensions and bad-faith actors, the problem of the fiction of intellectual property and how that problem is even more intense when dealing with virtual “goods”–I hope you’ll ask many questions and we can do our best to not just participate, but also find others to rope into the discussions too!

    In my view, the personal responses are most interesting because everything stems from them…but how they get warped and transformed can be fascinating and horrific…

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