Dr Wendy Moncur came in to talk to us all about what our lives were like online and how that effects us and will effect those in years to come. Wendy works as a lead researcher within the university research group ‘Living Digital’. Part of what she researches is looking at life experiences of a human being and how those experiences can effect how they use the technology around them at that specific time in their life.
She started to make us think about some of the things she researches herself. When does our social identity start? Is it when the sperm reaches the egg? Is it when we are born into the world? Or is it when we are old enough to have social media accounts ourselves? When a woman becomes pregnant the most popular thing to do nowadays is to post an image of a baby scan on social media. Does the social identity of that baby start then? As that image of the baby scan is on social media and online forever, no matter if it is deleted from the original source.
Becoming pregnant can be one period of change within a (woman’s) life span. Others could be leaving home and moving out, starting university, getting married, the death of a family member of friend can also effect how we react on social media. She started to talk to us about our lifespan, and different periods of change we have experienced. We had to think about what that looks like online in this day and age.
We were challenged to think about 1000 years from now. We had to think about what we would want the 17-20 year olds of 3017 to know about our digital life in todays day and age. My group started to think about what we would have wanted to know about the digital lives of the 17-20 years old 1000 years ago. Obviously it would have been so so different as most digital things we have now had not yet been invented hundreds of years ago. So this was a really interesting challenge for us.
One thing we had thought of, was how we post so many photographs of food (if we go out to a restaurant) onto Instagram. People in the late teens early twenties use hashtags all the time, especially when it comes to food posting on Instagram. This was something that had progressed from one thousand years ago. The evolution of food and how someone consumes food has changed. People used to just eat their food and not worry about it or ‘show off’ about it, and now we get so man people showing off about the fancy places they are eating out at.
This was a really interesting morning for us and I really enjoyed learning and thinking about how life has changed since 1017 in comparison to 2017 and thinking about what it could be like in 3017.