White and Le Cornu’s research regarding ‘Digital Visitors’ and ‘Digital Residents’ has resulted in various interesting and well-informed discussions amongst the group. Though I started with very little knowledge on the topic, through research and interacting with fellow student’s blogs, I feel that I now have a greater understanding of the concept.
Personally, I value the distinction between online and offline. I prefer not to update my social presence unless I am online for a purpose; as a result, I fall between a ‘Visitor’ and ‘Resident’. However, before starting this course I would have considered myself a ‘Visitor’, due to my lack of social presence online. Yet, as Francesca pointed out, people tend to fluctuate back and forth, between a ‘Visitor and a ‘Resident’, perhaps due to changes in motivation.
Tatiana’s comment also considers this fluctuation, suggesting that as the majority of individuals are neither a ‘Visitor’ nor a ‘Resident’, there is little reason to categorise individuals at all. This is particularly interesting, as it highlights discrepancies regarding who decides where someone lies on the ‘Visitor’ ‘Resident’ continuum. If the decision regarding categorisation is left to the individual, we cannot expect this distinction to be objective, or, to some degree, very accurate or reliable.
As Namat discusses in his post, the concept of the Web was established almost thirty years ago. This suggests that over time, generations are becoming more accustomed to using the Web for even the most menial of tasks, such as searching for telephone numbers or recipes, rather than searching through phone and recipe books. It is odd to think that perhaps in the coming years, younger generations won’t have the opportunity to learn and function in a way that isn’t dependent on technology, specifically the Web.