Trash-talking Avatars: the danger of lurid likenesses
Just a word of warning before you set up a google account with an avatar like the above munchkin: don’t. That is, not if you are older than 16, or are in the throws of preparing for a sucessful future/present career. According to Gartner Newsroom, visually represented by avatars, people’s online personalities are under scrutiny from both friends and potential business contacts.
But avatars, like a new pair of shoes, are fashion statements which can be vital to attaining any number of personal and professional goals. Gartner’s outline for the use of avatars specifically aims at the professional market, and the growing trend to bring business to virtual environments, however, the personal aspect of an avatar even in business cannot be overlooked. On a personal note, blogs too, are extensions of the virtual environment, but perhaps to a lesser extent, at least regarding Gartner’s outline which may draw heavily upon the integration of business in online worlds such as WoW and Second Life.
Blogs, forums, games – any associative link where people can mingle can be come a virtual reservoir for the various business tides. The problem is that governments, corporations, individuals – each have largely left the internet of the plate of serious discussion. Only after the internet has enjoyed decades of life are people finally laying down the groundwork. Another problem, however, may be that many avatars like the one above, are copyrighted and pose new problems to businesses in particular.
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