Being aware of your digital identity

Featured Illustration by Gustavo Zambelli

Alex Nakagawa

Mar 29, 2020

#14DayBlogChallenge

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This is day 4 of 14 of the urspace.io blogging challenge! This is a really fun challenge that my friends came up with, and I also figured that my time could be well-spent putting some of my daydreaming into words as I coop up at home amidst the craziness.
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What are your thoughts on internet culture?

Hm, I'm not entirely sure how to answer this one. I am pretty disjointed with what is currently popular in relation to many people within my generation mostly because my mindset towards any content I see online is that it should either:
  • be stimulating enough that I walked away learning something completely new (see other post for examples: https://alex.urspace.io/blog?id=199)
  • relevant enough to me for me to feel a strong emotion to it (my friends' stories, a new release of a video game, etc.)
More often than not, platforms like Tik Tok and Facebook kind of let me down in those departments, which is why I don't have them downloaded on my phone. Here's a ranking of my time spent across all of my devices:

Ranking my most used social apps

This is a ranking based on my Screen Time across all of my devices (iPad, iPhone, Macbook)
  1. Twitter: Not surprised at all really. I think I find my time online best suited to find news that really matters the most to me on here. Also, being in tech, I get a lot of free insight into how the business of it all moves from the leaders of the industry, and I'm all for a "friendly disagreement" lurk every once in a while. There are also the smaller portion of my follows that follow my friends' private accounts, and a lot of it is comedy gold.
  2. Telegram: In an effort to move as much of my digital identity away from Facebook and Google, I've tried to convince everyone I know to move to Telegram (strict privacy settings and encryption, no "personalization" b.s., extremely efficient file transfers). Sorry if you were one of them, I know it is annoying to switch over.
  3. Facebook Messenger: ^^^^^
  4. Instagram: When Stories were first introduced to Snapchat and later stolen by Instagram, I thought it was so cool to be able to see what my friends were up to at very certain points throughout the day. Then they added the ability to post past posts, reposts, advertisements, all of that, and I found myself inundated with reposts of totally useless content once again. Facebook is really good at doing that to me. Oh well. This is probably the app I un/reinstall the most.

So what are my thoughts on internet culture?

I'm sorry, but as you may have surmised after reading all that, I really don't have any. :/ I think we are all very different in the reasons we have for absorbing the alarmingly large amount of content on the Internet, and it can be quite dangerous to our mental health to get lost in these time-sucks. If I had any advice to offer, I would really encourage everyone to really think about your purposes of entering these rabbit holes that you enter. If you plan to consciously watch every single person who has ever danced to Doja Cat on Tik Tok, it better be because you feel like you got something out of it.