A Virtual Community is a group of people, who may or may not meet one another face to face, who exchange words and ideas through the mediation of digital networks.
Virtual communities are social aggregations that emerge from the Net when enough people carry on those public discussions long enough, with sufficient human feeling, to form webs of personal relationships in cyberspace.
The emergence of globally networked publics has raised several psychological, sociological, economic, and political issues, and these issues have in turn stimulated the creation of new courses and research programs in social media, virtual communities, and cyberculture studies.
In particular, the widespread use of online communication tools has raised questions of identity and the presentation of self, community or pseudo community, collective action, public sphere, social capital, and quality of attention.
Demerit of Digital Community.
Life online in the 21st century enabled terrorists and various cybercriminals to make use of the same many-to-many digital networks that enable support groups for disease victims and caregivers, disaster relief action, distance learning, and community-building efforts.
Soldiers in battle taunt their enemies with text messages, disseminate information through instant messaging, and communicate home through online videos.
With so many young people spending so much of their time online, many parents and “real world” community leaders expressed concerns about the possible effects of overindulging in such virtual social lives.
Although people often view the world in terms of groups, they function in networks. In networked societies, connections switch between multiple networks, and hierarchies can be flatter and recursive.Most people operate in multiple, thinly connected, partial communities as they deal with networks of kin, neighbours, friends, workmates, and organizational ties.
Rather than fitting into the same group as those around them, each person has his/her own “personal community.”
About The Writer
Emmanuel Alamu, Africa’s foremost Network Engineering Expert is a member of the Internet Society (ISOC) International and Nigeria. He is the Chief executive officer of NetEng Solutions, a network and internet solution providing company in Lagos, Nigeria.
Emmanuel is an active volunteer at the Internet Society Global Volunteer Training Program on Community Networks.
He is the president of The Emmanuel Alamu Network Academy (TEANA) where he has trained and certified hundreds of young people to become network engineers.