I’ll admit that a large portion of this reading whizzed past my head. I think this may be because I haven’t really seen enough racism online to signify it as an issue. For the most part people represent themselves purely through text based screen names. Unless you have a name that acts as a billboard to your race, I can’t see a way to get abused without disclosing it. Avatars are another matter. Allowing people options of skin color and body types was probably an effort to allow self expression but this is still letting methods of categorization rooted in the “real world” to root online.
Going back to the things that flew over my head, there was that whole sections on the “authentic native” and the “aura”. Anyone care to put it in simpler terms for me?
In regards to the monoculture, I believe in some sense it exists. We all go online for various reasons, but ultimately most of us come from similar economic backgrounds (rich enough to have lots of computer access). Diversity is something that gets promoted all the time (at least back in my international school), usually in regards to race. I think it’s important but something that shouldn’t be so focused on. Instead of looking at differences between us, we should be concentrating on things that unite us as humans. Anyways in the last part of the reading the idea of “access as an ultimate equalizer” was really interesting to me. I think the internet does have less barriers towards people of minorities, that would allow them to be better represented. Instead of thinking of what is socially acceptable or normative, minorities can put forth truer positive images. I disagree with the idea of “the master’s tools can never dismantle the master’s house.” Forms of hate may have transferred online, but that doesn’t mean we’re not progressing in solving them.