Fixed Networks VS Flexible Networks

Discussion in 'Discussion' started by Calxiyn, Feb 26, 2018.

  1. Calxiyn Keyblade Master

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    Most of us probably already understand what these terms mean, even if we've never heard the term before:

    Fixed Networks are Social Media sites like Facebook or Instagram. There are exceptions to this of course such as group pages and what not, but most of us have the understanding that on a site like Facebook, the norm is for you to put your real name and pictures of yourself, as well as information about yourself in order to connect with people who you've met in real life, like your family or your friends. Instagram falls under that to an extent, with an emphasis on putting photos of yourself, where you are, or what you're going. (Instagram is also pretty integrated with Facebook). In a Fixed Network, you may feel pressured to act a certain way because you know all your friends and family can see you.

    Flexible networks are networks where people are anonymous or pseudonymous. You get the chance to present yourself as a new identity, like with a username that's different from your real name, and a profile picture that could be anything from an anime character to an actor.
    Reddit, 4Chan, even KHV fall on the spectrum of a flexible network. On these sites you can post information about yourself which you maybe wouldn't post on your Facebook, since no one knows who you really are.

    In between this are websites such as Twitter and YouTube. On Twitter you have a choice, you can present yourself as "yourself", like celebrities or politicians having accounts with their real names and information, or you can be pseudonymous. For YouTube, it depends if you're the user or the creator, but lots of YouTubers get by without having to ever put their actual face or name anywhere, they simply have a character or a persona like you would have on a flexible network, but in a video.


    I wanted to explain that before I asked: What do you guys prefer when you're online? Do you prefer being on Fixed Networks like Facebook, where everyone knows exactly who you are (your real name, your real photos, the account you've had since you were 14 probably), or do you prefer networks that are more flexible? Do you feel like not being under your real identity gives you a chance to act out like you wouldn't on Facebook, or do you feel that instead you're able to be your true self?


    For me I don't really get to have a flexible identity anymore lol. "Calxiyn" is connected to everything, so even on more flexible networks, it all goes back to the same place so to speak, so I don't get the luxury of being able to be pseudonymous anymore unless I have other accounts. And I actually do have a couple of those. Not on KHV obviously, but Tumblr and Twitter you create new blogs or whatever and manage them pretty easily. It ultimately has to do with branding and clutter, not a "true self" or "deviance" sort of thing - if I'm really into something that has no relation to my "brand", like an author I'm reading a lot of books from or something, I don't want to fill up my Calxiyn accounts with all that stuff because my followers from my YouTube channel probably aren't gonna care.

    Anyway, I want to know how you guys think/feel, we were talking about this in my Social Media class at school (but y'all aren't being used for a homework assignment or anything don't worry)
     
  2. C This silence is mine

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    Like, comment, subscribe.
     
  3. ♥♦♣♠Luxord♥♦♣♠ Chaser

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    I don't think your situation falls under the category of "not getting to have a flexible identity". You choose to have it this way. If you wanted to either become anonymous in the sense of who you really are, or wanted to simply generate a new online identity almost every social network/forum I know of is capable of doing this. You can change your username, twitter handle, name on facebook, and remove any and all people following you all in the same afternoon.

    The fact of the matter is you love attention and from an outsider's perspective, seem to cling to it. The real interesting tidbit is you seem to be very passionate about the whole "content creator/content viewer interaction" process, yet aren't confident in your subs to not bail if you showed them everything.

    Oh well

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Calxiyn Keyblade Master

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    As I mentioned in the original post, I have generated some online accounts that aren’t connected with me *now* and that’s cool, but what I mean is that originally I wish I didn’t keep school, YouTube and other stuff all in the same Twitter for example. It would have been better to instead have a High School Twitter, “Personal” Twitter, and YouTube Twitter to keep everything organized for instance.

    It’s not necessarily about bailing, but each social media platform and each account in itself has a target audience, which is the point of the fixed or flexible networks - for Facebook is the audience is your family or friends, for Tumblr it’s more likely to be people you don’t know who follow you etc. A school twitter would have been “catered” to discussions between me and my classmates, a YouTube Twitter for YouTube, so on and so forth.

    That’s sort of our target in terms of discussion in our social media class right now, how each social media audience varies because of the fixed or flexible networks. Because in terms of the marketing of it, I suppose, if you’re running these accounts you don’t want to act like you’re on Facebook when you’re really on Twitter, etc etc.


    Edit:

    Something else that may be interesting, actually, is the varying flexibility even between flexible networks - on Twitter you can change your display username whenever you want if you want a new “look” without changing the one you log in with. This works on Discord as well. You can also change the one you log in with whenever you want, however on Discord if someone’s nicknamed you they can keep you as that as long as they want. Obviously on KHV we can also change our usernames which is another layer of flexibility.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
  5. Technic☆Kitty User Is Inactive

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    I enjoy the safety of not having my personal details on display for the entirety of the internet. Honestly though, it's so easy to track my information. I use the same two email addresses for everything. Makes it pretty easy to track me down. I keep my address off the record for safety concerns but a lot of my personal information is on Facebook. I prefer anonymity, but in this growing age of connectivity, it's kind of hard to not have a Facebook or other social media.

    Personally, I prefer flexible networks.
     
  6. Calxiyn Keyblade Master

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    I think Facebook is starting to fall out of favour though, and maybe it’s because this generation may value their privacy more then say, our parents who post anything and everything on Facebook XD I definitely know people who are ready to expose everything about themselves on social media, but Facebook encourages that to an extent with how it asks about where you work, where you went to school etc meanwhile Twitter and whatever doesn’t ask, so it’s about being willing
     
  7. SushiKey Destiny Islands Resident

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    Honestly? I'd rather not be on a fixed network. I shut off my Facebook profile because my address ended up on all those people finder sites (Spokeo, whitepages, etc), which I'd rather not have happen since there's some..... questionable people I know online that would love to get a hold of that info and start causing trouble. That's why I go by Sushi on here: I stopped going by my old username so that I could start over online. That, and the whole mess with Facebook and Cambridge Analytica (the company that leaked the info of 50 million Facebook accounts) got me to reconsider about things, since even though Facebook says otherwise now, they don't give a crap about your privacy and never will. They will still sell your info, that's how they make their money to stay in business.

    From now on, I'm sticking to two big flexible networks: Reddit and Discord. The other ones include forums like here.