In what ways do online spaces co-opt personal expression?

In a sense, digital social platforms homogenize personal individuality as much as they amplify and incentivize it.

One of the most interesting contradictions of the ‘digital revolution’ is how big tech endlessly promise better tools to express our creativity, individuality, and unique voice in the world…

…as we are happily baited into using platforms and devices that funnel an increasing scope of our human experience into the homogenizing, universalizing portfolio of a ‘user.’

4 Replies to “In what ways do online spaces co-opt personal expression?”

  1. Let me count the ways… de-friend someone you disagree with, mock those you disagree with, shame those you disagree with, don’t provide any evidence when you disagree with, claim the other has no right to speak because they’re this gender, or this culture etc., etc., etc. Perhaps the biggest of all, gather around you only those who give you likes (so you better give some likes on this ;-)). No, wrong, the biggest of all, just don’t express an opinion on social networks because it will just get you in trouble from someone — many have told me they are on FB but won’t say anything, because people don’t want a real conversation. I just keep trying :-)

  2. Liked! :) I agree. It seems impossible to quantify how much people withhold their thoughts or opinions in these spaces due to the fear of repercussions. What we can count are the attacks, but what we can’t really measure is the impact that those attacks have on what is then never shared.

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