Since the creation of Levittown in the early 1950’s people have flocked to belong within a social community, thinking they can ‘become someone’ simply by being there. The most recent migration of this kind is to the hundreds of virtual communities enveloping the internet. Behind the use of e-mail and search engines, the use of ‘general community’ is the third most utilized facet of the internet, proving these communities are frequented by millions every day.
Essentially all communication technologies are seen as an ‘artificial substitute for something more ‘real’’. Society has been way since Plato argued that writing lacked the same personal impact than that of speech. Akin to most elements involving advancing technology this subject is not without controversy. Critics argue that the term community cannot be synonymous with virtual interaction, the one side of this argument claims that virtual community distracts us from RL (Real Life) community, becoming problematic to the RL itself. The counter argument is that the virtual reinvigorates the lacking RL community by providing a place to speak with less boundaries. I intend to investigate these arguments by examining how communities function in society and the implications on the individual users.