My research essay is about how the ethics of video games are not progressing as quickly as its advancement in technology. Gaming journalism is still mostly biased, women don't receive fair or equal treatment as men in the same gaming professions as them, and game publishers are selling uncompleted, retail-feature lacking to customers. All of these are bad practices in the video game industry that need to be changed, reformed, or abolished.
The resource that I found particularly valuable was an article written by Leah Burrows on The Boston Globe. The article, titled Women Remain Outsiders in The Video Game Industry, provided me with factual statistics, a personal antidote, and other credible information that I implemented in the video game gender ethics section of my multimodal essay.
When it comes to unanswered questions on unknown video game ethics, I don't think that exists. Most ethical problems in the video game industry are typically known to the general public. People have the solution to these ethical problems, but no one in the video game industry wants to be the first or pivotal figure for this new era of game ethics, because the game publications, developers, and press are all profiting off of these unimplemented changes.
Imagine a world where diseases and disorders were almost nonexistent. Every human being had desirable traits and was perfect in every sense. Going to the doctor’s office for being sick and not making the school sports team because you were not physically up to par will become a things of the past. Advancements in technology are happening at a rapid pace, and these scenarios may just be the reality in the future due to genetic engineering. The Oxford English dictionary defines genetic engineering as the alteration of the genome of an organism by laboratory techniques, especially by the insertion, alteration, or removal of a gene. Everyone will be utilizing this technology to better their children and grandchildren.
Humans have already managed to modify animals, such as the cloning of Dolly the sheep in 1996, as well as plants and other crops. Genetic engineering is one of the most controversial topics in science today because of the arguments regarding whether or not this process is ethical. It is a universal idea that a person is born the way they are and little can be done to change that. As time passes, people will probably reject this idea and genetic engineering will be something that is needed to have a healthier population.
The article "The Hazards of Developmental Gene Modification" discusses the negative consequences that may come with genetic engineering. With any technology, there are risks, and it is important to be literate about how the technology works. It states that there is always room for human error. There could be a "miscalculations" in where a gene is supposed to go. You could possibly end up with a baby with three eyes or only one leg. The author discusses the ethical issues as well and argues that replacing a kidney does not change the "nature" of a person, but replacing a gene does. This article is credible, as the author, Dr. Stuart Newman, has a PhD in this field and is a professor. This shows that he is knowledgeable on genetic engineering. A flaw with this source is that the author cites the Council for Responsible Genetics as a source, which is the website on which the article is published. That raises suspicion for biases. Also, Newman frequently uses specialized jargon. It proves he is knowledgeable on the subject, but simultaneously creates a disconnect from anyone who is not in the targeted audience of the scientific community. My other sources focus of what good genetic engineering can do, and this article is the opposite. This will provide another perspective in my essay.
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Throughout majority of my research process, I focused on one particular question, “How has the progression of technology affected the doctor patient relationship?” In the beginning of my research, I basically made the claim that the progression of technology was very harmful to the doctor patient relationship, which I should have never done. This should give you a sense of how biased the beginning of my research became. Due to a lack of understanding of what a RESEARCH paper was, I would intentionally go out looking for sources that supported my thesis statement. I really regret doing this because going back to fix it became very time consuming. From now on, I am going to conduct research the correct way, with an unbiased mind, and I will not be recommending this method to anyone nor will I partake in it ever again. It wasn't until I was more than half way into the research process when I began to realize that I was on the verge of trapping myself into writing a one page paper which would eventually end up talking about nothing. After recognizing the problem and fixing it, writing an 1800 word paper didn't seem so frightening anymore.
As I got further into my research, I began to look at different aspects of the issue regarding the doctor patient relationship and technological progression. Once reevaluating my proposed question, I began to think outside of the box. My final research question ended up being “How is technology being used to cause such harmful effects on the relationship between a doctor and their patient? I haven't gotten a concrete answer yet, however, I have found some possible answers, such as wanting to conserve time and money. What do you all think could be some possible factors?
Technology has had a major effect on the way information is distributed in today’s society. As we pass from generation to generation, technology is becoming a big factor in peoples’ lives. Social media are computer-mediated tools that allow people to create, share or exchange information and ideas in a virtual community. In the past decade, social media has risen to the top of the social agenda, becoming a norm in today’s society. Through study it has been shown that the average person spends roughly two hours on social media in a day. Whether they are having a conversation or simply scrolling through their news feed, a substantial amount of time is spent scrolling through social media. In many ways social media has acted as a stimulus, allowing people from around the world to exchange thoughts and ideas, but one can only wonder if social media is doing more harm than good. Social media accounts for a large amount of unreliable information that is spread through the internet. To combat this issue, Rheingold offers a solution. He entitles his screening process "crap detection" in which users perform methods such as background checks on authors and cross references to check the reliability of sources. The application of Rheingold's method can work towards resolving this growing issue.
My research essay talks about the impacts of technology on family communication and bonding. My focus is on the negative aspect and how technology takes away from face-to-face interaction between family members. To show this is true I provide statistics, study results, a comparison of before and after family interaction, as well as an example of a family affected by technology addiction. I think my strongest aspect is the introduction, maybe because I know how much emphasis Dr. Wharton has put into it. So I focused on this the most and this is what I came up with:
“Technology has become an integral part of our lives with many benefits such as instant access to information and means of communication. Without doubt, electronic devices are making our lives much easier; however, studies show we are spending more time interacting with technology than with our family. Today, “the average American child grows up in a home with 3 televisions, 2 music CD players, 3 radios, 2 VCR/DVD players, 1 video game player, and 1 computer. Teens, age 13 to 18 spend 72 hours a week interacting with electronic gadgets. Only 45% of teenagers spend at least 9 hours each week with their family” (Bowman). Even though technological advances are correlated with many positive benefits, they have also negatively impacted family communication and bonding. Family values seem to disappear as technology becomes deeply embedded in our lives.”
What do you guys think about it?
I continue my research essay by looking at and comparing a pre-digital age picture (a family playing a board game together) with a cartoon representing the modern family (cyberspace bonding). Then I talk about a couple of studies which support my opinion on the matter. Finally, I consider an opposing view… which does not necessarily say that technology has a positive benefit but it states that "Technology is enabling new forms of family connectedness that revolve around remote mobile phone interactions and communal internet experiences." This survey finds that those with the most technology are more likely to share moments and check in with their families while online. Ultimately, this study supports the idea that technology is inevitable in family communication (no matter what the relationship is) and it is correlated with some benefits.
My question is; Is this enough for an opposing view or should I replace it with something more specific like; Others say that technology is bringing families together and it is in fact a positive impact…My second question is; should I counteract this opposing view with another source that supports my opinion or should I jump straight to the conclusion?!
From my research into this subject I have learned that you should not come up with a thesis unless your research is complete. Because, you might not find enough (good) evidence that supports your argument. This results in either your paper not being credible and you just wasted so much time…or you realize that you have to change your thesis and ultimately all your sources with the right ones... again you just wasted time. If you don’t have compelling evidence, your opinion alone will not convince the audience. I liked the most Howard Rheingold’s readings because he talks about crap detection and tips on how to distinguish a good article/source from the pool of information available. This was particularly helpful for my research essay.
Through my literature review I found out there is a strain on consumers and producers relationship. Many scholars have argued that social media played a gigantic role in the relationship coming to bittersweet end. With all the current shootings and police brutality I witness the hatred consumers harbor for producers. On Twitter, a group of activist advised local citizens to not converse with traditional journalist (Huffington Post, CNN journalist). The activists were warning the locals that the journalist would twist their words and/or leave out important information. I wanted to investigate the truth behind those statements. I wanted to know why consumers rather report the news themselves and spread awareness via social media versus getting it broadcasted on the news circuits. For this research project my question is “Why are consumers not willing to be just consumers anymore and is there anyway to satisfy both the consumers and producers?
Furthering my research I found seminars called Media401 where journalists from all different avenues came together and discuss issues. One issue that stood out was a topic about how to define journalism. Some of the members believed that journalism is transitioning to citizen journalism while others believed that traditional journalism is something that cannot be altered. The reason why journalism has only one definition is because ethical guidelines placed upon real journalist. There is huge difference between activism and journalism. One is going to give consumers’ information just how it was giving to them and another is going to investigate the story and give out what is needed not wanted. Journalists are expected to report a certain way and as consumers we should respect that.
Being that we are all connected on this blog it allows me a chance to get some feedback/ opinions on this topic. I would love it if everyone would tell me his or her answer for my research question. Please give supporting reasoning for your answer. I do not mind if you link your resources because that will give me more sources to connect with the ones I already have. Also, in 2-3 sentences answer, “What changes need to be done in order to restore the original reader/publisher relationship?” Basically, how do we get back to allowing the professionals do their jobs? And how can we stop so many people from feeling like it’s their responsibility to inform the public about problems.
What I want my readers/ peers to get from my research is how to accurately use social media. They should be aware of the ways to get involved with local issues and what to expect from traditional journalist. They should know the correct procedures in citizen journalism because they not the professionals and unlike the professionals they have no ethical guidelines to follow. I want to bring consciousness to how we post, tweet, and share information. Hopefully, as a generation we can restore the consumer/producer relationship we had before the digital age.
Since 9/11 there have been over 500 drone strikes killing over 3000 "terrorist". Not included in that number is the nearly 400 civilians that have been killed by these target C.I.A. killings. Is the War on Terror an actual legal war? Congress has not declared war since World War II. Believe it are not, there are actual rules to war. There is International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) who reports on violations the law. So, if the United States was technically not at war and killed over 3000 people without due process, is this a crime?
Terrorist have made it well known that they want to do harm to the United States and its citizens. The use of drones have kept our armed service men and women safe and out of harms way. The C.I.A. has been using drones in their targeted killings program to successfully find and kill high value targets (HVT) in terrorist organizations. By using drones it is saving the American tax payer millions of dollars. To do this type of thing with "boots on ground" would cost more in money and lives. Drones have given the military and the C.I.A. a capability that they have never had before. The ability to do long term surveillance and to strike a target without worry about the loss of American lives. Drone pilots can literally be in a completely different country from where the actual strike occurs. I wonder if drones did not exist would we be so quick to go into combat, if American lives where in danger?
Are the drone strike even affective? Even with killing over 3000 terrorist we still have the existence of Al-Qada, and newer groups such as ISIS who has run a muck though out Iraq and Syria. Some would say we are creating more terrorist than we kill. The civilians in Iraq, Yemen, and Pakistan have also paid a toll for our use of drones. Would there be so many civilian casualties if there were actual soldiers there instead of drones?
There are no easy answers to these questions, but that doesn't mean you ignore them either.
Over the course of the semester, we have read a number of articles about how technology is affecting our individual and social lives. Jeffrey Rosen discusses how social media and surveillance technology are pushing us to reconsider how we interpret the First and Fourth Amendment, and conceive of our fundamental constitutional rights to free speech and privacy. Carolyn Miller and Dawn Shepherd provide an early examination of internet blogging and its relationship to other forms of journaling and self expression such as diaries, and captain's logs. James Boyle, Jennifer Jenkins, and Keith Aoki look at copyright, fair use, and changing landscape of documentary film-making. And in the work we've read most recently, Howard Rheingold offers advice about how to cultivate "mindfulness" in the information age.
Since this class began in January, in addition to reading, thinking about, and discussing these assigned texts, you have been conducting your own independent research. Some of you are looking at advances in medical technology; others are investigating ethics and journalism; still others are interested in startup culture, the causes of the financial crisis, organized crime, new media and celebrity culture, or video gamers and gender politics. Through your research you have developed your own areas of expertise.
This week the blog becomes an open forum in which you can publish some of your work-in-progress from your research essays. Test out your thesis. Give us an abstract. Ask for feedback about a question that you're still investigating. What have you learned from your research into your subject? What has your research helped you to understand about the assigned readings? What are the questions or issues you want to make sure we consider before the semester is over?
Commenting: Anyone who needs the extra credit towards the Blog Project.
Taking a break: No one
This week, use your research as the foundation for your blog post. You can provide an abstract or brief summary of the argument you're constructing in your research essay. Introduce and summarize a resource that you've found to be particularly valuable. Or you can identify the "big questions" that remain unanswered, even after months of research. As always, before you post, please carefully read and follow the guidelines and posting information for this blog.
Image Credit: "Speaker's corner" by Ade Oshineye on Flickr.