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Online Consensus

Online Consensus

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Published by smitty_buckler
Case Study analysis of two online campaigns.
Case Study analysis of two online campaigns.

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Categories:Types, School Work
Published by: smitty_buckler on Oct 31, 2011
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10/04/2013

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Petersen 1Smitty PetersenProf. ClottConsensus30
th
Oct 2011Online ConsensusWhile reading the Park case study article on online consensus building, I was reminded of a project I did in 2008 on cultural narcissism called Denial of Self. The project was an attempt to write a play online via consensus utilizing a wiki. A wiki is a website with editable pages that allows for multiple editors, sometimes they are closed and sometimes they are open to anyone. The mostrecognizable wiki would be wikipedia.The project came from the growing social network culture. It was meant to look at how peoplecreate fake personae on these sites as well as the power, control and manipulation that also happenssocially on these sites. All of which is classic narcissism. It seemed the Internet was a place wherenarcissism flourished. Denial of Self was also trying to look at western culture and how it promotednarcissism on an individual, structural, and cultural level. Basically, the project was looking at it as themain source for oppression/violence that happens to marginalized folks.In western culture, there is this idea of categories of people which are used to create an- us and athem. We take on these masks; the mask of being an activist, a hippy, a punk, an artist; as well as being black, white, rich, and/or poor. This project looked at how we use these labels to hide behind, enablingus to not have to be ourselves. We also hide in technology in text messages and emails, on socialnetworks and chat sites. The upside is our idea of community is growing; with friendships being spreadover the globe. For the Denial of Self Project, we chose the Internet because we thought it would allowanyone to join. We quickly realized this was not true. One must be at least moderately affluent and
 
Petersen 2technologically advanced enough to be capable of interfacing with online media.I am fascinated with online media and electronic communication. There is so much room for 
error. “When you communicate through words over the web.
(sic) Your words only have meaning. Inorder to give inflections and body language it all has to be written out. It simplifies and alienatescommunication to the point of making it immensely difficult. Because it is so easy to have
misunderstandings everything (was) to be clarified to the point of exhaustion.” Yet, there was still a lot
of miscommunication and misunderstandings that happened. (Petersen)
The reason we chose to use a wiki for Denial of Self was “to be challenged to project our realselves; to show our real feelings; to show our real ideas and our real reaction to other people’s ide
as; to
open the faults and successes up to everyone; to revel in our imperfection.” (Petersen) None of this
happened.The show was a train wreck. The other main organizer just kept vetoing every idea that came upand we had dates pre-scheduled at a theatre. As we have discussed in class these things take time sohaving a deadline and trying to do consensus was ignorant. The other huge fail was that folks didn'treally want to do anything online and they also didn't want to meet in person. Some felt that the
technology was too difficult to figure out. Which the Park article spoke to: “they made the most of the
Internet's functions to facilitate two way communications and motivate and empower the netizens to participate online and offline, finally leading t
o a success.”(Park p.234)
 I believe there were several reasons why the case-study in Park's article was more successfulthan the wiki project. The most obvious being the better utilization of Internet function. The wiki page ,although not very difficult to use, was not very interactive and it was difficult enough that most peoplehad to learn to use it; i.e., it was not click and go as with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) sitethat was described in Park's article.The second way it was different was in that the EFF had a easy to understand goal for their site,
 
Petersen 3
“to prevent the passage of the Communication Decency Act of 1996” although I still am unclear 
 exactly how they were utilizing consensus. As a mobilization campaign it appears to have been verysuccessful but what decisions were made by a group of individuals over the Internet is unclear. (Park 233)Wherein, the Denial of Self site was nebulous in we weren't even sure of what we wanted toaccomplish or how we want to accomplish it. If I were to recreate this project I would do things verydifferently. I would focus on individual stories and feedback. I would focus on the one on onerelationship building as Eichler outlines. Although initially this sounds difficult to do on a large scalevia the Internet without face to face interactions, I don't believe it would be. Our culture has shifted somuch into relationship building via these electronic methods. We even have sexting now.This begs the question how does one create dynamic content that people want to engage inabout a topic that no one wants to talk about which also requires a self-analysis that no one wants to do.
Who really wants to talk about “narcissists (who) tend to be more concerned with how they appear than
what they feel, (are) seductive and manipulative, striving for power and control, egotists, focused ontheir own interests but lacking the true values of the self -- self-expression, self-possession, dignity, andintegrity without a solid sense of self, which leads them to ex
 perience life as empty and meaningless.”
especially on a cultural level. No one wants to talk about oppression except a few special super geekyfolks. (Lowen Abstract)So as Eichler says
it’s
all about the framing. Park also talks a lot about framing but
calls it “(t)he
Frame Alignment Process (which) was adopted as a conceptual framework... (were) four related but notidentical processes--- 'frame building' 'frame amplification' 'frame extension' and 'frame transformation'were elaborated and various functions on the Internet facilitating this frame alignment process were
examined.” (Park 233)
 As I understand it both authors are speaking of similar methodology which they utilize to

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