Digital Reflection 7

Before I was an English Major I was an EDP (Emergent Digital Practices) major, before an EDP major, a Computer Science Major. I’ve moved, perhaps, towards a direction that, at first glance, seems to retract from the current time’s technological boom. Of course, after a bit of reflection, and having taken this course, it seems safe to say that in fact, the opposite is true. Rather than going to the specific, I’ve moved towards the broad and all encompassing. Literacy and composition are foundational to our use of 21st century technologies. What it means to be literate in the 21st century, however, is changing.

Yancey argues that technological literacy is necessary for verbal literacy in this day and age. It is inarguably impossible to write without using a culmination of technologies. Before computers there were pens and paper, before that quills, before that chisels and stone . . . Today the computer, internet, and the collaboration and access that these platforms enable  has opened up an entire realm of new possibilities for writing. The film I’ve selected for my digital reflection this week deals with the sort of issues that can arise when we begin to manipulate authorship in ways that were previously impossible. Catfish deals with the issue of authenticity, but also with authorship. It deals with a question that we’ve touched upon in our discussion of creative non-fiction and “the facts,” how much “truth” must there be in “creative-non-fiction?”

While I certainly agree with Yancey’s claim that education needs to be brought up to a level that recognizes how technology is shifting the greater landscape, it is important to consider just what the ramifications of doing so may be. There is already a mounting concern about student’s interpersonal communication skills. While the networking capabilities and direct-link to a wealth of audiences is great for the landscape of writing, I worry whether people will still have as much to write about as less and less interaction takes place face to face and more and more of it takes place behind a screen.

What will that look like down the road? We can only wait and see . . .

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