Blog #1

After looking through my social media accounts, my posts and the posts of those I am connected with via my accounts are definitely a result of a combination of social determinism and technological determinism. As I flipped through my feeds, I witnessed posts about the election and the political marches mixed in with posts containing entertaining memes and updates on life events. My own use of social media is more to keep up with the news of the lives of those I follow and to stay informed of public opinion. This seems to be a common use among those I follow meaning, just like me, people post what they think other people want to see and usually nothing more. People post what they want others to see their lives to be and, I know at least with my close friends and I, social media suggests a different reality. Social determinism is what guides our social media interactions and suggests what we should and should not post, like, share, etc.

The only exception would be my use of Twitter. While I do follow friends on Twitter, I mostly follow aviation professionals and news sites. I prefer following the news this way because I am able to read through multiple sites all at the same time, it is concise considering they can only use 140 characters at a time, it is convenient because I can look at it via the application on my phone, and it is usually instantaneous being that they post it immediately. One example that comes to mind was during an active shooter situation at Ohio State University. I was sitting in class and without even disrupting class, I was able to follow live feeds of the situation via news media Twitter accounts. The entire ordeal was told silently on my phone screen and, as I found out after class, I wasn’t the only one aware of the situation either. That day, and many days, I wasn’t refreshing my feed because I just wanted to see what everyone was up to. I was refreshing my feed because I was receiving live updates on the status of the shooting. I open Twitter everyday because if I don’t, I won’t know the status of the world. This mentality is similar to that of when my other social media applications prompt me to open them because I was ‘tagged in a photo’ or someone ‘commented on my picture.’ I open them because my technology prompted me to do so. Technological determination also guides how we use our social media due to the nature of the technology itself.

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