Support Groups, Not So Supportive

After introducing myself to my new alcoholism support group and explaining to them my purpose for being there, I received mixed reactions from the other participants.  I briefly described our class project and asked if anyone would be willing to share with me their reasons for and experiences with using the online support group.  Right away, one user replied to me and told me that support groups do not participate in class projects as it is a rule in their 12 steps program and healing process.  Other users responded, however, and told me reasons why they joined the group and how it has helped them with the healing process.  No one else ever mentioned to me that support groups couldn’t participate in projects so I believe that first respondent sucked.    One interesting response I received from a user  explained that the reason they joined the support group was because their “mouth” was the reason they got into the big mess (consuming the alcohol with the mouth/saying inappropriate things when drunk) so the internet served as a medium where her fingers could do all the talking.  I thought that was an interesting concept which helped me understand one of many reasons why people turn to the internet for support.

One problem with online support groups is you cannot always truly trust the sincerity of other peoples’ comments and responses to your post.  I tried to be respectful and disclose all of my information to the group so that I could gain their trust and they would feel comfortable  interacting with me.  One user responded to my post by asking me “when my presentation was so they could come in for show and tell”.  I beleive this person was mocking me and subtly letting me know that I am not going to get much help or sympathy from this support group.  I don’t know if she was just joking or was really interested in coming in.   That is the problem with online posting because wording can sometimes be ambiguous and you cannot determine someone’s tone by reading what they typed online.









Support Groups Are Intimidating

For my practicum project I joined an online support group for alcoholism.  I chose alcoholism because it is an addiction that is quite prevalent as is its media coverage.  I felt this topic would allow me to interact with many individuals and hear their stories about their alcohol problems and learn how support groups helped them recover/heal or if groups left much more to be desired.   I started out on my first discussion board submission by introducing myself and giving my reasoning for joining the group.  I let everyone know it was for a project but I also disclosed that I have gotten in trouble with alcohol in the past and would use this opportunity to learn things as well.  I asked if anyone would volunteer to maintain a continuous conversation with me about their issues with alcohol and explain to me how support groups influenced their lives.  I felt it was necessary to disclose a lot of information about myself so that what I was doing was ethical and the other members would trust me and feel comfortable disclosing information to me as well.  I am still waiting for any replies and I will update you all when that happens

Chat Roulette… A perv’s dream

A couple years ago I checked out chat roulette because all of my friends talked about how funny it was to chat with strangers and make fun of them ( especially when your drunk).  We frequented the site whenever we pregamed as a source of amusement and everytime tried to come up with something more ridiculous to do because we were in the comfort of our apartments and nothing really would come of it.  For the most part it was fun and harmless because most people at the other end were doing the same.  However, as you clicked next to move onto the next chat participant it became a common theme for dudes to expose themselves or asking girls to return the favor with elaborate signs.  We stopped making chat roulette a staple of pregames because it became a little too awkward.

After my hiatus on chat roulette I decided to check it out today to see if things have changed.  While the site seemed to have tamed down a bit in the 5 minutes I participated, it still featured many tweens (seemingly sitting in their dark room hiding from parents) and many older shirtless men (seeminlgy looking for some action).  I do believe that chat roulette is meant to be fun but it just seems like a perfect opportunity for perverts to do what they do without worrying about being caught.  The site is not meant to build genuine relationships and, instead, serves as a platform for anyone to act impulsively without worrying about consequences.  I do not believe the site can be utilized to help participants like support group websites, nor is it a professional networking site.  While most times the site is a harmless and fun internet past-time, it is capable of doing harm especially to minors who may come face-to-face with a 65 year old man participating in his “past-time” in the middle of the night.

Introducing Myself


I am Nick Johns and I am a super senior majoring in Comm Arts and receiving a Certificate in Business.  I am from Delafield, WI which is only about an hour east of Madison.  This last summer I was a sales intern at Wind River Financial, which is a credit card processing company.  I do not find credit card processing fun nor interesting, but it was a great learning experience, nonetheless.  I am a big fan of the 90s and really enjoy the movies and music from that decade.  While the weather is nice, I like to golf and swim in the Madison lakes when there isn’t organ destroying bacteria floating around in it.  I look forward to taking this class because I am not too familiar with blogging or tweeting and I would like to learn a lot more about them.

History of Internet

I, also, found this explaination of the history of the internet very confusing.  I am not very familiar with any of the terminology.  I do, however, find it interesting that the fast progression of how the internet was developed was motivated by fears of competing countries losing the “technological upper-hand.”  Obviously, technological advancements placed in the wrong hands is dangerous and the internet is a very important tool for controlling such activity.  The main gyst of this video that I believed I understood was the the internet is just a interconnected system of wire and satellites that allows for multiple communications/messages from a single source.  While I do not completely understand the process, I am sure glad that someone else does and perfected it to the system we use everyday for almost every aspect of human activity.