Dec 08 2010

Digital Biography

Published by at 2:53 pm under Uncategorized

“Underlying this question is, once again, the need to distinguish between the accumulation of data and the conscious act of organizing it and giving it shape that is at the heart of biography” ( Arthur 78).

Arthur pinpoints the misconception behind what digital biography is. It is definitely an accumulation of data or stored knowledge of our activities and proclivities, but it is without artistic portrayal or organization. Grafting this information and depicting it in an aesthetically consumptive light is the difference between autobiography and digital biography. Also, digital biography, like facebook for example is a generically stylized way of ‘biographing’ our information, there is nothing unique and individualized about it except for it being about one particular person. The artistry absent in digital biography lays in our ability to portray exactly and intentionally the way we want it seen and absorbed by a reader or viewer.

My experience with Facebook and Myspace go back to the latter part of my senior year in high school five years ago. My experience with it then is that I do not view it as any sort of definitive biography, but simply as a way to store information and key points in my life I may later utilize to actually create something meaningfully definitive about myself or my story. Facebook itself is constantly changing and so is the information I provide my profile with, it is still a wonderful tool to express oneself publically, but with immediate reactions from other users. It isn’t a scholarly space and if there is something artistically expressive and acclaimed on there, it is usually from an actual outside artistic event. It is crucial to reiterate Arthur’s point that the real art of life-writing lay outside the scope and control of digital biography.

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