Life Online

Exploring (some of) what’s hot on the internet

Virtual Communities, WWW

Posted by meek1 on February 19, 2007

I wrote a term paper on Virtual Communities for one of my postgraduate courses and the professor candidly admits that for his age, he is not quite as passionate about the web, Internet or even computers as most of his students.

What amuses me is his dismissal of online communities – and coming from a person who does not know much about the Internet at that! To his credit, he confessed having a strong apprehension about the Internet as all he heard from his friends were the devastation of porn, gambling sites, virtual reality games that harm more than honing skills.  Then he tried his hand at it and……. was lost. So he decided not to venture into the Wild Wild Web anymore apart from functional purposes like emails. Researches? Well, there are teaching assistants.

Hmm….  of course, “Virtual Communities” is a loaded term, it means different things to different people.

I woke up this morning thinking of just one aspect of the Internet. Putting it simplistically: Where there are communities, there are needs of consumption and commodities. Searching, reading reviews, buying products are all as integral as making friends on the Internet. In my two years of selling and buying (mostly gadgets and photography stuff) over auction sites, I have made friends who blessed me with their rich knowledge and experiences.

Prof, I don’t know that much about the web as you think but everything has two sides to a coin.  The key is to be circumspect yet open-minded to the point of being magnanimous.  The www is a world without walls and surely you have all kinds of people out there.  As a prof for 30 over years, have you never had one bad student? (your own definition of “bad”). Surely you had one, even just one? If yes, why haven’t you given up teaching?!

Because there are still countless good students out there waiting to be nurtured. I’m one of them. Ha!

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