I moved to Ireland 7 years ago, but before that when I live over in Russia and I was engaged in different offline communities such as sport. For almost 8 years I was doing karate, my friends and me had our own place where we were training, where we was spending time and having fun. With our karate community I was traveling a lot around the Europe, I saw different places, I meet different people and of course I gather a lot of experiments from being involved in this offline community. Almost twice a month I was involved in different competition. I simply love it, because this community teached me a lot, how to respect people, how to dill in certain situations, always stay positive and respect other people around me.
Everything changed in my life when I moved in Ireland, I lost almost everything I had, friends, girlfriend and the karate club I was involved in. Good that in our 21st century we had an Internet and that’s when I stated getting involved in online community’s because Internet for me was a revolution. I was able to keep in contact with some of my friends and family. Because not all of my friend from Russia had internet in that time, and some of them had they own problem and they own life, I didn’t had much time to talk to my best friends, so that’s why I came across the STEAM online community.
This was a gamers’ community, where people make a new friends, invite them to join and to play together, create they own groups and clans, having an online game training, having a clan wars, having an online chat and also create they own game tactics. This steam community is the largest gaming community worldwide. This community gave me an opportunity to meet new friends. The only problem was I became very addicted to it. I lost my time to communicate with my friends, family from Russia and also as soon as I had free time I always was on front of monitor.
I see the benefits of hanging around online, because Internet is the source of any information I’m looking for, it’s also the new, fast and a cheaper way of communication. When I’m home my computer is always on, I stop watching TV and read newspapers, the internet for me is a new way of my life, I don’t know what I would be doing if I didn’t had it. A lot of people can say that handing online is a waste of time, but on my own opinion they are wrong, for example me because of the internet I learned how to use mostly all media software’s from watching online video tutorials, reading blogs and forums.
Here are the advantages of hanging around online for me and for teenagers who share similar opinion.
The first and probably most important advantage to mention is cost. Online lessons will typically be cheaper then offline courses and some of them can be completely free.
One of its greatest attributes is instant access. I can watch anything I want when I have free time, and the content always will be there.
I can advance at my own speed, even skip lessons if I feel I’m doing well or take the same lesson over and over again if needs to.
I can make my own plans online, for example when I’m booking a holidays, flight, hotel, or even an appointment.
I can read a honest reviews of the product, before purchasing it.
The words “virtual community” and “online community” have been bandied about, hyped and interpreted in many ways. Online or virtual community is the gathering of people, in an online “space” where they come, communicate, connect, and get to know each other better over time. From that point on, the rest is up to you. Your community will be what you and your members make of it!
So what is the importance for teenagers hanging online? I think is that…
1)Socialize – meeting people, playing around, sharing jokes, stories and just taking interest in each other.
2)Work together (business) – Distributed work groups within companies and between companies use online community to build their team, keep in touch and even work on projects together.
3)Have topical conversations – Online salons and discussion forums such as the Well (http://www.well.com), Cafe Utne (http://www.utne.com) and others have formed communities of people who enjoy conversations about topics and shared interests.
4)Learn something – each of us has an interest in certain things, you can watch online video tutorial or read blog to bring your skills to the top level.
I also created my own online community 2 years ago it’s called www.mixtuts.com (mix video tutorials) I got a lot of members who was watching my own tutorials and who was able to get any benefits from them. The people was writing me email with the help them in they project, people was subscribing on my videos and also people was looking forward for my new videos. On my own opinion online community mean more for me then offline community, because online for me is a freedom and offline is a way of life.