Archive for the ‘ Week 4 Readings ’ Category

Mediation: Space – A step forward, or a step too close?

I feel that this week’s readings on mediation through space serve to support Scannel and Hartley’s theories on mediation through time, but also raise some significant points of their own. I particularly enjoyed the online reading by Hay, My Space? Firstly, however, I will discuss Moores’ The Doubling of Space.

I’m sure in all cases, Moores’ article prompts readers to recall certain situations in which they feel they are ‘doubling’ their presence through media; for example, watching a live rugby league match on television whilst discussing it over Facebook comments with friends; maybe videoconferencing for work; or using Skype for contacting family and friends overseas. I used to flatly believe that our ability ┬áto transcend space through contemporary media was an exciting and convenient concept; however after reading Moores, I was alerted to several ideas that perhaps waver my opinions. For example, the permeability of new “situational geographies” and “virtual societies” and the ability to assume online characters and alter egos, as discussed on page 28:

“According to Turkle… ‘the obese can be slender, the beautiful plain…’ selves may now exist in ‘many roles’ and ‘many worlds’ at the ‘same time’.”

This passage reminded me about our study of Second Life players in last week’s lecture, and the way they assume new identities and ‘live’ their lives in virtual existences perhaps based on imagined fantasies of the player. I was reminded also of South Park episode Make Love Not Warcraft, in which the characters become consumed by an online existence that their own lives become neglected in subservience to their virtual selves. (I would attach a link, but my computers been really slow this week! I’m sure there are some clips on You Tube). To clarify my argument here, I’m suggesting that although a ‘plurality’ of space can be incredibly advantageous and convenient, there is a certain darkness or threat from such shifts in space that one must be wary of.

Another example of this ‘darkness’, before moving on to Hay’s article, is the ability for transcendence in space to enable transcendence in emotional contact; by identifying with the ‘intimacy’ portrayed by celebrities and media figures, we become vulnerable emotionally through our phemenological experiences with space. This is evident through the recounts of public response to Princess Diana’s broadcasted funeral service, from Moores’ article.

Finally, I found Hay’s My Space to be an interesting read, particularly his notions of our mediated lives as spaces in which our activities become like web ‘applications’; aligning the modern man with the machine. He noted how our social networking sites are essentially platforms on which we ‘manage’ an image to fit virtual contexts, which I find incredibly true, however much I might regret to admit it. Thus, an existence in virtual space cannot be representative of our existence in physical space, although scarily, soon that proposition may be reversed, as it seems virtual space only continues to dominate and infiltrate our day to day existence.


week4: let’s be in two places at one time.

where we read The Doubling of Place – Shaun Moores

Unlike the previous weeks readings, i am finding the readings to be a bit more easier to read.
I’m also starting to understand them a bit more than i did before.
In this week’s reading i found that Shaun Moores makes many references to other people such as Paddy Scannell, Lori Kendall…etc.
Here, Moores talks about “doubling of place” which- to me- conveys a sense that we can be in two or more places at one time. In the beginning he states that Scannell’s idea is that

“these media serve to ‘”double” reality’ is developed as an analysis of the distinctive character of public events”

I’m not too sure what this is meant to mean, however i am assuming that he is trying to tell us that with technology advancing these days, media can now take us to a whole different level. It’s like he’s telling us that because of these advance we can achieve the idea of being ‘in two places at one time’ for example being on the phone- you are physically where you are using your phone but also with the other person whom you are talking to.

This idea gets me thinking that, if we lived in a world without technology, what would it be like?
Imagine the idea of not having a phone, then you get lost what do you do? you can’t call a friend to come and get you. Imagine having no internet, a thing that allows you to be in completely different places at one time- which could be America, China or even France, how will you do your research for your next assessment?

He also implies that technology allows us to be able to multitask as seen in his statement:

Second, citing the frequent use of multiple ‘windows’ on the same computer screen, Turkle (1996a;14) proposes that selves may now exist in ‘many roles’ and ‘many worlds’ at the ‘same time’.

So if we can, why not be in two places at one time?