Wednesday, November 12, 2008


For today's class I read "Shout into the wind, and it shouts back" Identity and interactional tensions on LiveJournal by Lori Kendall. Throughout this article Kendall sought to explain the dichotomous nature within LiveJournal such as: private journal vs. public performance, efficiency vs. audience management, control vs. connection and autonomy vs. the desire for comments. Each one of these is strategies used on this site. The first the thing Kendall delves into is the idea that people are using LiveJournal as a diary for everyone to see. Many of the people that she interviewed for her research admitted that their journals were a way for them to publicly perform for an audience, while others liked LiveJournal because updating friends and family on their life was much easier.

Some problems that may arise are the lack of total privacy. Although it is used in a public space, your journal can be controlled to allow for some people to see one thing while others may not gain total access (Kendall, 2008). In some cases mistakes have been made where confidential information was shown to the wrong people, which lead some people to only post information that everyone can see. Besides this issue some people enjoy being able to connect with people on LiveJournal through the material they present. This connection leads to increased commenting on a journal entry which is one of the things that people admit, they enjoy.

One of the things that I found interesting about this article is how people desire comments. I think that’s interesting because it gives people that sense of importance while at the same time stroking their ego. Even more interesting, people posted things that they thought were sure to give them a lot of attention that got absolutely nothing. I think one reason why people do not respond well to postings about how miserable life is because they don’t know what to say. I am sure that they don’t want to say the wrong thing that would be unhelpful or could make matters worse.

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