If humans were mindless robots the world would be thriving and efficient in every manner. Advancement in science would take huge leaps without the need of deliberating on what is morally right or wrong and what is best for the individual.
After reading the differing opinions presented by my colleagues on their blogs, I can say that there is one thing that I found in common which was there is no easy answer to a lot of the issues faced by social media use. The focus I took on the topic this week was aimed towards Youtube channels that either falsely give information or selling information that is already free.
The main issue with these scammers are the fact that they are gaining the trust of their consumers based on the fact that people aren’t robots – humans are known to be lazy and naive at some point in their lives (a point I made in a comment reply to Lucy on my blog).
Another issue with a lot of mistrust on social media is the inability for the average consumer to do anything about it. Lucy and Sophie added their view on this in a response to my comments on their blog (Lucy’s and Sophie’s). Consumers who are sceptical are only left to do just that. At the end of the day, everyone has a list of have tos, must dos and should haves. But as non robots, we are always in it for ourselves.
The tools that humans possess require an amount of responsibility to protect oneself and others involved from being harmed in any manner possible. The internet and social media in particular are no exception and there are many reasons why one should act responsibly. This has been addressed in blog posts from previous topics such as preventing yourself from being in your future employer’s “‘reject’ pile” (Andy Sugden, 2014).
A blog post by Dr. Jim Barry addresses the ethical issues faced in today’s social media marketing. One of the issues Dr. Barry mentions is Invasion of Privacy. This issue is synonymous with being anonymous on the internet which I highlighted in my previous blog post. Before the introduction of AdBlock, surfing the web was honestly a pain. Here’s what I see on Facebook now with AdBlock paused:
I had quit playing video games over the summer and I have not bought my own box of cigarettes in almost a year (was a pack a week smoker, now barely one in a month). These advertisements were tailored to match my previous addictions and without AdBlock I would’ve gone back to my old habits. Despite the annoyance, one issue that significantly troubles me the most personally are scams.
Mike Chang’s Six Pack Shortcut is one of the most popular fitness channels on youtube but it is one of the most controversial as well. His methods have been labelled as being dishonest and misleading by the use of click-bait headlines and exaggerated health facts. What a lot of people are not happy about is the fact that he is selling information that is already free. Other popular youtube fitness channels have called out on Mike Chang’s business as a scam. Some have done so professionally while others … not so much.
Having been studying Psychology for the past half decade the harm marketing scams can do are extremely underestimated. Disappointment leads to a drop in general well-being such as self-esteem and over all happiness (in extreme cases depression) and even more so for people who already are low in self-esteem (e.g. 16 year old underweight me).
This topic was a bit of a challenge for me as I have never personally been inclined into making my self internet known. Using MaTTcom as an example made me appreciate people who put effort into their online profile even more. After reading other people’s blogs I soon realise how naive I was into thinking that the popularity is a lot, if not totally, luck based. The topic also allowed me to appreciate authenticity in general and how hard people work to be authentic in an already diverse online culture.
My comment on Andy’s blog approached the topic in a different manner. I initially had an impression that the process of making yourself presentable online essentially removes a lot of freedom that the internet was made for. Andy made a good point in his reply that the process does restrict freedom in a way but it also works to our advantage.
My second comment was on Pippa’s blog on how she identified not being ambiguous as important in developing an authentic profile. My questioned stemmed from the many internet celebrities that get critically analysed from time to time from just not making themselves clear enough. This video is a recent example that I have encountered where hip hop star Kanye West gets into a verbal altercation with host Sway in a radio talk show. The comments from the video from youtube and other websites caught my attention more than the argument itself. People even went as far as diagnosing West as having Psychological issues. Be concise people.
Matthew “MaTTcom” Marikian is currently the General Manager of Counter Logic Gaming, an eSports organisation based on one of the most popular current games, League of Legends. I will be using MaTTcom’s successful journey through the eSports scene as an example of the right steps to take in which to develop an authentic online professional profile.
Branding and Visibility
MaTTcom started out a freelance artist, an “overwhelmingly mediocre” one as he stated out in his blog. He realised that what he could not produce with pure talent alone, he could compensate with being highly flexible and adaptive in his work. MaTTcom expanded his talent in the game League of Legends by producing related art work . His work soon gained a lot of attention by the gaming community through mediums such as reddit and his personal deviantart profile. While MaTTcom may not be the most talented in his field, he made up for it by marketing himself really well which is considerably more important (Chamorro-Premuzic, 2013). A quick search on League of Legends sub reddit of “MaTTcom” yields these results (the thousand numbers are upvotes, the reddit equivalent of Facebook likes):
MaTTcom stayed relevant in the eSports scene by affiliating a portion of his work to a League of Legends team, which is the same team he is managing now, Counter Logic Gaming or CLG. MaTTcom was not only one of the popular artists amongst the League of Legends community but was probably the only one that was worth CLG’s attention. This may not have been as simple as the ‘Employ Adam‘ case but MaTTcom stood out just as well and that is what mattered back when League of Legends was at the beginnings of its popularity.
While it can be said MaTTcom was lucky that he got into the League of Legends scene relatively early and that he dove into a huge gap in the market, he made him self known, stood out and stayed relevant to develop his professional profile.
MaTTcom photo from MaTTcom blog: An artist’s journey in LoL and eSports- http://blog.ibuypower.com/blog/2014/05/04/mattcom-blog-artists-journey-lol-esports/
After interesting discussions with colleagues on the topic there is much more to your online identity than just knowing how to be anonymous appropriately. My initial curiosity on the topic was sparked when I read Aumar’s blog where he talked about online gaming and security. The internet has brought a lot of opportunities for people to commercialise their personal brand and in gaming it is not an exception. Aumar made a point on how the threat towards the security of these gamer’s streams only became a problem when money was introduced (in reply to my comment). Money hadn’t cross my mind when it came to hacking internet celebrities and I have no doubts now that it is an important factor. Hackers don’t just target the famous because they’re famous.
Andy’s comment on my blog sparked another interesting point on the benefits of being anonymous in online gaming. For both of us it created a platform to experiment and build our real life persona by learning from our online persona. What we do online can have major effects (both positive and negative) brought forward to the real world and for many of us it easy to take this for granted.
Calum’s reply to my comment shed some light into the intricacies of being a musician the modern online world. He emphasizes that effective audience retention is the key to success as a musician. And although having a distinguishable online identity is one of the best ways to do so, Calum doesn’t dismiss having multiple “sub-identities” can help when appropriate. This point ties up well on my thoughts about having multiple or single online identity and that is there is no single best way to behaving online (as it always is) but the key is to learn and adapt.