Identity is composed of how one both thinks of oneself and how they present themselves to the world. Under varying aspects or conditions, a person’s identity changes to fit the circumstances. In being oneself, the condition or character of a person is revealed differently to friends, co-workers, superiors, parents, those in authority or in situations involving dating, job interviews, sports competition and more.
‘The technology of the Internet offers its participants unprecedented possibilities for communicating with each other in real time, and for controlling the conditions of their own self-representations in ways impossible in face to face interaction’ (Nakamura)
In Nakamura’s piece, she elaborates on the discussion of differences between physical and assumed digital identities, and with our remix video we intend to look at the evolution of cultural rhetoric surrounding this discussion.
Online, there are an ever increasing number of opportunities to build alternate identities, and because the actual self is separated from this constructed persona, falsifying details or an entire identity is easier while sometimes harder to catch. Being aware of the threat of online predators is now a required lesson in public school safety curriculum, but at the same time, lying about yourself on the internet is accepted as inevitable and joked about on Conan.
Our remix video will be a supercut of clips that track, through repeated themes, the discourse surrounding physical and virtual self. Sources will include movies from when the rise of the internet was raising questions and fears about reality, as well as more contemporary examples which address deliberate falsification of self within the realms of social media and online dating.
To structure our argument, the video will track, through repetitive analysis of multiple genres of falsified online identities. These accounts and profiles cover a broad range of digital identities, from the existential and fearful to casual and humorous. We will then portray and analyze the effects of their falsification. This supercut from Fandango is both thematically and stylistically resonant with what we are planning to achieve with our remix video.
This example is great because it pulls from a series of popular movies with language on the theme of identity linking them together.
(Mitch Chaiet, Laura M. Krizan, Marc Speir)
Nakamura, Lisa. “Race In/For Cyberspace: Identity Tourism and Racial Passing on the Internet.” Works and Days: Essays in the Socio-Historical Dimensions of Literature & the Arts 25/26 (1995): 181-93. Web. 9 Apr. 2015.