Cyber1 - Jerry Zhou Cybernetworks 192C March 24, 2008 The...

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Cybernetworks 192C March 24, 2008 The Dark Side of Connectivity and Collaboration For the past two decades, there has been considerable literature written on the positive aspects of Internet with emphasis on the increasing connectivity and informational availability to the masses. Web moguls such as Google, Facebook, and Youtube, along with concepts such as blogs, search engines, and social networks, are aggregately touted as revolutionary positive innovations of this generation. Daniel Solove, in The future of reputation : gossip, rumor, and privacy on the Internet , frames these web innovations into a digital dystopia, where breakers of social norms are puritanically branded a scarlet letter in its digital form, reminiscent of Hawthorne's novel. Through a series of examples, he reveals a world in which users live in perpetual self doubt, forever second-guessing the actions of others. By quantifying the enforcement of societal norms, Solove effectively describes the neologistic “norm police” authority to be overamplified through modern web developments. His self-coined “Norm Police” are the vigilante individuals who enforce punishment on socially unacceptable actions. To emphasize the disproportional punishment associated with each action violating a social norm, Solove cites the event of a Korean train passenger refusing to pick up the droppings of her dog and her subsequent public shaming as an illustrative example of his point. A Korean girl refusing to pick up her dog's droppings on a train was photoed and posted on the internet. Within weeks, news of her actions were known nationally. Not only was her name identified, her private information—addresses, contacts, email, even school affiliation—were released on the web. Shortly thereafter, she dropped out of her university. While refusing to pick up her dog's droppings was socially irresponsible and unacceptable, her subsequent national shaming was a disproportional punishment. The new generation
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This note was uploaded on 04/07/2008 for the course CYBER 192c taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '08 term at Duke.

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Cyber1 - Jerry Zhou Cybernetworks 192C March 24, 2008 The...

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