boyd, d. (2012) “Participating in the Always-On Lifestyle” The Social Media Reader. New York, New York University Press: 71-76
It’s no longer about on or off really. It’s about living in a world where being networked to people and information wherever and whenever you need it is assumed. I may not be always-on the Internet as we think of it colloquially, but I am always connected to the network. And that’s what it means to be always-on.
My always-on-ness doesn’t mean that I’m always-accessible-to-everyone.
So if I’m at dinner, I will look up a Wikipedia entry as a contribution to the conversation without checking my text messages. All channels are accessible but it doesn’t mean I will access them. – the same goes with choosing TV channels, dinner menus when dining out – whether Italian or Chinese – or even what to cook at home – given the fact that all ingredients are available at the supermarket
.. economic capital is not the only factor. Being always-on works best when the people around you are always-on, and the networks of always-on-ers are defined more by values and lifestyle than by generation
humans are both curious and social critters. We want to understand and interact. Technology introduces new possibilities for doing so, and that’s where the passion comes in. We’re passionate about technology because we’re passionate about people and information, and they go hand in hand.
There’s no formula for embracing always-on practices, and we must each develop our own personal strategies for navigating a world with ever-increasing information.
The process of finding balance may appear like we’re feeling our way through a maze while blindfolded. We’re all going to bump into a lot of things along the way and have to reassess where we’re going when we reach our own personal edges. But, in doing so, we will personalize the media rich environment to meet our needs and desires.
Many who blog and tweet are not find it relevant and meaningful. And, realistically, the world at large is not reading the details of their lives. Instead, they are taking advantage of the affordances of these technologies to connect with others in a way that they feel is appropriate. – this is what my tribe pool website is all about after all?