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Dr. Mike Wesch, Associate Professor of Cultural Anthropology at Kansas State University, discusses how the Internet, more specifically YouTube, has created the most voyeuristic, yet well-connected realm in his lessons from YouTube keynote.
Dr. Wesh shares an interesting perspective from American author Neil Postman who suggested that humans are amusing themselves to death. In a combination of media ecology and anthropology, the professor describes an online world where people around the world can hide in anonymity, they are, ironically, the most well connected the world has ever seen thus far.
As more people are posting video logs, or vlogs, on the video-sharing site, Internet users are drawn into “a world of instant replay” where they can literally rewind and see what they have done. Although there is a certain level of distance between the blogger and the viewer, these videos are what connects worldwide audiences, let it be via positive or negative comments. Users are becoming more self-reflective and often, these videos reveal some of their innermost confessions, spawning motivational campaigns, comments and sympathetic response videos. Evolving from basic tools of communication, social media has become one of the few things that strangers around the world are united by.