I have to start out by saying, cybersluething is much more difficult than I thought it would be. I partnered up with one Jenny Castonguay and went on a search for anything about her online.
I have known Jenny for a few years now, and so I knew that this process would not be easy, she is essentially invisible on the internet and doesn’t have many social media accounts to even find. But I used all of the information that I had about her to my advantage, because if I didn’t, then I would have nothing to talk about for this post.
Jenny has a very faint digital identity, her most accessible accounts are her public teaching twitter and her e-portfolio, beyond that I was only able to find two profiles connected to her and neither of them were public. She has curated a pretty positive and professional identity online, even if it is fairly minimal. There is nothing about her online that would bring up any issues or make me think twice about hiring or interacting with her.
Social Media & Personality
Reading the article by Nicole Lee I found that I agreed with a lot of the things she talked about, even if I’m not entirely able to relate. I think that people tend to believe that social media is meant to give an opportunity for one’s unfiltered personality and thoughts, and this is not to say that it impossible, but just like we curate our personalities to fit our surroundings in real life, it is likely that we are doing that on social media as well. I don’t use social media enough to really say if I curate different identities on different sites, but I do use each platform for a different reason. Facebook is for family, Instagram is for friends, and Twitter is to follow current events and interesting people. Each social media has a different strength for me so it wouldn’t be unreasonable to assume that the way I present myself on these different websites would cater to the content that I am consuming.
Social Media as an Echo Chamber
I am somebody who subscribes to the belief that if you wouldn’t say it in real life, you shouldn’t post it on social media, no matter how anonymous you think you are. This tends to result in me having a much smaller amount of sympathy for people who find themselves under fire for their posts. In Jon Ronson’s TEDtalk, he discusses some of the pitfalls and problems that arise from social media. I see where he is coming from about social media becoming a frenzy and blowing issues out of proportion or causing backlash that isn’t quite deserved. The main issue that social media has, particularly when calling people or companies out for problematic behaviour, is that nuance and complexity gets lost. I think oftentimes social media tends to forget that people can grow and change, and it doesn’t allow for people to demonstrate that growth or remorse, which I think is the main problem when someone gets criticized on a massive scale. There does need to be an opportunity for forgiveness, in some cases, which is oftentimes lost on social media users.