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The Dark Side of the Virtual World

The internet has allowed the evolution of gaming to a degree where anyone and everyone can play. These games are called Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG), the most popular game currently, being “World of Warcraft”. There are many good things about MMORPG, such as interaction with other players while questing, and creating a background story for your personalised character.  However many negative aspects associated with online gaming are being discovered. In an episode of “Good Game SP,” it was reported that a gamer had been charged with theft and ordered to perform community service for threatening a younger gamer in real life, both physically and verbally, in order to gain the younger gamer’s rare amulet and mask in a gaming situation (Good Game SP, 2012). This is an example of how seriously some gamers can become, to the extent that they almost believe the situations are real. 

In the reading “A Rape in Cyberspace” two virtual characters were sexually abused by a character called Mr Bungle. In reality, no physical interaction occurred, however there were emotional repercussions experienced by the creators of the characters involved. Cybersex in gaming, is becoming a growing concern, especially with the age of gamers becoming younger and often more emotionally immature (Dibbell, 1998).  Unfortunately any regulation on the internet is almost impossible.

Dibbell, J. 1998. “A Rape in Cyberspace or Tiny Society and How to make one.” Posted December 1998. Accessed June 1 2012. http://blackboard.qut.edu.au/webapps/blackboard/content/contentWrapper.jsp?content_id=_4076720_1&displayName=Week+9&course_id=_81726_1&navItem=content&href=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.juliandibbell.com%2Farticles%2Fa-rape-in-cyberspace%2F.

Good Game SP. 2012. “Good Game Gamer News.” Posted 18 February 2012. Viewed 3 May 2012. http://www.abc.net.au/abc3/goodgamesp/transcripts/s3433309.htm

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Posted by on May 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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New Media Transgressions: Could robots become an integral part of our everyday lives?

In this week’s readings, Cynthia Breazeal discusses her thoughts on how robots could impact our lives in the future. She believes robots could play an important part  in areas such as media, health and social interactions. For example, in a health trial, robots were programmed to interact with the participants, giving the same advice as available on a laptop used by the control  group. The participants using the robots had better results, thought to be due to the bond developed between the participant and the robot. Some participants even began to demonstrate anthropomorphic behaviour. (Breazeal, 2011).

Science fiction films and books, have given people in today’s society different expectations of robots. In both the anime and movie of “Ghost in the Shell”, humans are replacing body parts with robotic components, to enable them to to live longer, look younger and have superhuman abilities. In the episode, “Captivated”, an eighty year old female transfers her mind to a robotic body, with the appearance of a twenty year old woman (Kamiyama, 1995).  The opposite occurs in the film, “Blade Runner”, where robots are trying to become human and have human memories (Francher, Peoples, 1982). 

Companion robots, available in many forms, could have a future positive impact. However, still in the development stage, they will inevitably be too expensive for the average citizen.

Breazeal, C. 2011. The Rise of Social Robots. Posted February 2011. Accessed April 25th 2012. http://www.ted.com/talks/cynthia_breazeal_the_rise_of_personal_robots.html.

Francher, H, Peoples, D. 1982. Blade Runner. Directed by Ridley Scott. Produced by Michael Deeley.  Neutral Bay, Warner Bros Pictures. DVD.

Kamiyama, K. 2002. Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex. Captivated. Directed by Kenji Kamiyama. Produced by Production I.G. Australia, Madman Entertainment. DVD.

 
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Posted by on April 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Hopping down the Cable Line

New Media has provided work opportunities for freelancers and professional companies. Although freelance workers only generally earn approximately $30,000 a year, and sometimes finding work can be hard, it is a good opportunity to learn as you go along, and to get your name out there (Gill, 2009). 

I was at Easterfest helping out with the technical side of filming, handling cameras and audio. It got me wondering where all the footage went during the performance. I followed the white rabbit down the cable line, and I found out that a number of live performances were put on the Easterfest website and Youtube.  The success of the Easterfest is due in part to the mass collaboration of all of the volunteers at Easterfest. Everyone from the camera people, to the organisers, help to make it happen (Zittrain, 2009). The way they get volunteers for Easterfest, is through informal communication via word of mouth and their website. The website acts as a way for volunteers to nominate for work opportunities in different areas. The work shifts are flexible and everyone has a chance to do something different (Gill, 2009). Along with presenting established artists, the Festival helps  to promote upcoming bands and Christian music. With the help of new media, outreach can encompass an even wider audience.

Gill, R. (2007). “Informality is the New Black”. In Technobohemians or the new Cybertariat? New Media work in Amsterdam a decade after the web. Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures. 

Zittrain, J. (2009). Minds for Sale. Youtube Video. Posted November 29 2009. Accessed April 15 2012. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dw3h-rae3uo&feature=youtu.be

 

 
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Posted by on April 22, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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