Sumayya Al-Kindy <al-kindy.s>

Hey Prof. Reagle,

Here’s the link to my second reading response page: <>

– Best Regards, Sumayya

Jason Allen <allen.ja>

Hey Prof. Reagle,

Here is my second set of reading responses:

Here is the markdown for my last response: ### Dec 04 Tue - Pushback

Online communication can be a horrible thing. It can cause people to delete accounts. However, it can also allow a space for people to express themselves and find people with similar interests. When people post something, comments have a big effect on the atmosphere of the post. Reagle quotes a CNN study that found “that commenters who were down-voted subsequently posted more and lower-quality comments” (2015). This cyclical behavior can be detrimental to an online space. Moderation can be a solution, but it doesn’t always work. Another solution would be to get away from digital communication. Gomez and Morrison found that most people adapt their behavior in an effort to reduce dissatisfaction with online communication (2014). They noted that the most frequent motivations for a change in behavior were emotional dissatisfaction or lack of control.

I found Gomez and Morrison’s findings interesting. I stopped using Facebook because I got nothing out of it (emotional dissatisfaction) and as I mentioned in my last response, I started limiting my Snapchat usage because it was taking too much of my time. While I don’t think it is possible (or necessary) to opt out of online communication, I think it is important to limit the use of it. Obsessing over social media or getting into long, unending fights with strangers over whether pineapple deserves to go on pizza is never worth it. Limiting online usage also makes us more appreciative of the time we do spend online and hopefully, makes us nicer.

Best, Jason Allen

Sarah Baker <baker.sar>

Sarah Baker

Daniel Berg <berg.d>

Professor Reagle, Attached below will be the link to my last five reading responses. Thank you for a great semester, and see you tomorrow! Thanks Dan

– Daniel Berg Northeastern University ’22 Personal: 413-519-1123

Sofia Cianca <cianca.s>

Hello Professor Reagle,

This is the link to my second set of reading responses:

This is the markdown to my last reading response:

December 4-Tue-Pushback

“Pushback is an expression of those who have access and use communication technologies, but who decide to resist, drop off, manage or reduce their use of these technologies.” This is how Gomez and Morrison explain what pushback is. As we live in a technology-driven society many people are realizing what this entails: addiction, emotional dissatisfaction, such as feelings of depression and loneliness. A great number of people are actively seeking ways of controlling their technological usage by directly changing their behavior towards it. For example, some people restrict their technological usage to some exact times, downgrade their technology, or go completely offline. This behavioral tailoring in order to pushback is also seen on online comments. Comments are a great way for online communities connect, but sometimes this privilege is abused and people use the comments section to hate and troll. Because of this, some people prefer to deactivate and pushback on the comments section.

My question is how can we improve our technological experience without feeling like we have to pushback? Nowadays, technology is at the center of our life, it has a heavy weight on our everyday life and it dominates most of our activities. Technology is supposed to make our life easier, why does is seem like it’s making it more difficult? I think it would be interesting to understand why something that should be beneficial and helpful like technology is getting in the way of our everyday life. I believe technology has developed so much over the past few decades that we sometimes are no longer able to control it. For example, people hating in the comments section has been a relevant problem for a long time, but since the comments section brings such a big thing as the online world together is hard to manage it.

– Sofia Cianca Candidate for Bachelors of Arts in Communication Studies and Media Arts Northeastern University Class of 2021 Email: Cell: (617)-306-2028

Robert Ciliberto <ciliberto.r>

Hello Professor,

Here are my reading responses (part 2): And my response for today:

Dec 4 – Pushback

Gomez defines pushback as “a reaction against the overload of information and changing relationships brought about by communication technologies such as smart phones, tablets and computers connected to the Internet” (Gomez Morrison, 2014). The nature of this pushback comes from the ever increasing pervasiveness of technology. There used to be a time where having an email was a rarity. Nowadays many people have multiple emails accounts and multiple social media accounts. Is this even bad to begin with? Why do people engage in the pushback seen in blogs and popular news media? Particularly with the use of social media, many people find the use of technology to be addicting. Posting a picture of your dinner and watching the likes roll in on your phone can feel good. However the fact that anonymity provides people with a sense of security can lead people to say horrible things. For example Caroline Criado-Perez recieved, “as many as fifty [death and rape] threats per hour,” for campaigning for increased female representation on currency.

And this is why the pushback exists. the idea is that by separating oneself from the chaos that exists online, you can focus on what really matters to you, without all the junk. Personally, I think that this is overly idealized. Many modern functions of society depend on the usage of technology like email and social media. Name one large company that doesn’t have both an email you can use to contact and a social media page somewhere. It is this necessity that makes truly opting out of technology usage impossible.

Ellen Foley <foley.ell>

Hello Professor,

Here is my second set of reading responses.

Best, Ellen

Hsien-Hsien Lee <lee.hsie>

Hi Joseph,

URL for the reading response set 2

Markdown for today’s reading response

Dec 04 Tue - Pushback

Reagle (2015) mentioned that “some people prefer not to look into the online reflecting glass of humanity, some people disable or restrict comment on their sites.”(p. 172) Some people may think that the use of technology has been on the rise and more people are relying on online communication with each other. The purpose of social media platforms have made the world to be a global village as information is circulated faster than before, which causes that some people think online communication is awful and it not easy to opt out as human beings cannot survive without it. >From my personal perspective, I believe that everything has their positive effect and negative effect. If people can use technology correctly and understand how to manage technology, it actually can contribute to our society.

Online communication has become an issue in the society as it affects how people interact especially young people. Although technology use does not cause fatigue to the young people, it affects their day-to-day relations with each other and also family members. Despite this, the increase in technology has made people start pushing back or withdrawing from the use of technology. For instance, some people think Facebook makes them sad or emotional, but we should consider that Facebook is the only reason that makes people unhappy? Or there have many other reasons that affect people from being sad. So, people may only pushback due to various reasons. The first one is emotional dissatisfaction when they find out their needs are not met on social media. The other factor which influences people to pushback is external values like religion, politics, and moral reasons (Morrison, & Gomez, 2014).

In the past, people communicate with other by face to face because they do not have any social media. However, they interact with others by talk. After we have an online platform, people tend to use social media to communicate with other. It shows that people just use the different mediums to express their feeling, it does not matter in which mediums people use. Therefore, I think we all should not judge online communication or technology because it is not their fault. We should think about how to change our own behavior online. On the other hand, moderation is significant, we should encourage more policies to exist in online communication because technology can not restrict our behavior but policies can make our online behavior better.

Best, Coco

Yejin On <on.y>


Hack MD: ### Dec 4th - Pushback

I like to challenge myself to do weird achievements or accomplishments, like how many seconds I can stay underwater or how many grapes I can fit in my mouth. One day, I wanted to test how many minutes I could go without using any form of technology. I thoroughly planned how I would spend my day without technology; I wanted to go for a swim outside at the pool. I thought spending some time outside to draw my surroundings would kill a lot of time. I wanted to walk around the streets of São Paulo and appreciate the sun.

30 minutes in the challenge, I realized that I had to submit an assignment via Turnitin. As I walk back into my room and turn on my computer, I sighed. I felt that I was defeated by technology.

Using technology and being online became a part of my life and it is inevitable. It slithered into my life so naturally it became part of my academia life as well. Web research, web discussions, web assignments, web everything. Even if I wanted to take a break, I could not stop.

Because of the fact that internet preocupies the majority part of my life, I think I have given up trying to stop it. Instead, I have thought of using it in a healthy manner. I started thinking that since internet does take up most of my life, I should make a positive use out of it instead of complaining.

Internet did give me insight about other people’s thoughts and values, which helped me construct my distinct perception and articulate them in a respectful manner. I totally agree with Professor Reagle’s statement: “Insight and wisdom might not always be found at the bottom half of the Web, but it does have a sample of what some people are thinking”. Honestly, being active online does help me get an insight of people’s personalities – the personalities I would have never thought they would do in person.

I also took control of the amount of time I spend on technology. Although I don’t put any limits on my usage of technology for education because amount of work depends day-to-day, I made sure that I did not get distracted. However, I did restrict my time on social media, especially on YouTube. The reason exactly matched with one of the five reasons of Pushbacks suggested by Gomez and Morrison: “Pushing back as a result of technology addiction”. I also wanted to “regain control of my time and energy” so that I can physically appreciate what I have and surrounded with at the moment.

While I am still working on self-improvement and balancing between usage of technology and leisure time, I have developed some questions that I strive to answer by myself: Is staying out of contact with technology the only way to practice pushback? How can one pushback while still using technology? Can pushbacks to avoid comments and reactions in return cause psychological effects, like anxiety?

Best, Yejin On

(Esther) Yejin On Northeastern University ‘22 Double B.A. in COMM & ECON Double Minor in MSCR & LPSC>

Joseph Reagle <j.reagle>

[cc:ing class for benefit of all]

Hi Jake, the citation is part of the sentence, so the period goes after:

“blah” blah blah ().


On 12/3/18 8:51 AM, Jake Willis wrote: > Hello Professor, > > Quick citation question. I know when we cite we should have the period inside the quote and then the citation. > > “blah.” () > > But what about when we write more after the quote? Is the citation still outside the period? > > “blah” blah blah. () > OR > “blah” blah blah (). _______________________________________________ neu-cda mailing list

Courtney Redcross <redcross.c>> Dec 4th- Pushback

Why am I scrolling through Instagram at 3am? As the advancement of smartphones, tablets, laptops and internet continues to expand, more people are getting connected and staying connected. Connections are a good thing, right? Yes, but there is a difference between connections and being constantly connected. The term pushback, “is a relatively recent phenomenon; it has only recently started to appear in academic research sources, although it is more common in personal websites, blogs, magazines and newspapers from the last few of years.” The term is defined as being, “a growing phenomenon among frequent technology users seeking to establish boundaries, resist information overload, and establish greater personal life balance.”

While reading this article, I had to take a step back and really think about how connected I am with the world at all times. When I’m lying in bed I bounce to and from Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and back to Instagram. There is never a time where I am not completely connected with the world (except for when I am sleeping). That is a thought that I hard to understand but growing technologies have made it so easily accessible that more people don’t even know that they’re doing it.

Ishan Rosha <rosha.i>

Reading responses set 2 link: Ishan Rosha homepage link:

Markdown for pushback:

Dec 04 Tue - Pushback

Newton’s Third Law states: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction “every action has an equal or opposite reaction. In the case of the world of social media today, pushback is more or less the reaction. People are having an increased resistance to constant online connectivity in order to have a greater sense of balance in life and not allow information overload to get to them. This is done in order to overcome the addiction to social media, the emotional dissatisfaction that it brings and the external values. Black Mirror once examined this in an episode called “Nosedive” where high ratings were the goal and it became an obsession to achieve these in order to gain high social status when in reality it didn’t result in any real meaning.

Ricardo Gomez’s and Stacey Morrison’s Pushback mentions a controversial 2011 column published by the New Yorker titled The Information: How the Internet Gets Inside Us where the author, Gopnik, categorized the cultural impact of the information age into three groups: the Never-Betters (people who praise technological development) the Ever-Wasers (claim nothing has really changed) and the Better-Less (dislike technology and yearn for the nostalgia of the good old days). However, now it is the Better-Less who are emerging as euphoric with the way they are looking to “manage or reduce their use and perceived dependence on technology.”

The consequences of pushback are surprising. From the viewpoint of Human-Computer Interaction, there are more questions raised about the design of technology and how it can be improved to win users over. There’s also the question of how long innovation will last a reliable source of profit.

In chapter eight of his book Reading the Comments: Likers, Haters, and Manipulators at the Bottom of the Web, Joseph Reagle looks at pushback by comparing it more to online restriction rather than giving up social media. He states that “we sometimes prefer not to look into the online reflecting glass of humanity.” This “reflecting glass’ is what people with pushback avoid in order to make themselves feel better.

Noah Sabadish <sabadish.n>

Dec 04 Tue - Pushback

Noah Sabadish

Is online communication really so awful? Is it possible to opt-out of

digital communication?

We carry comment in our pockets everywhere we go. As ideal as it may sound, how likely is a young adult willing to voluntarily delete all of the applications with a comment section from their smartphone? How about ten young adults? One hundred? A thousand? Half a million? If we cannot escape comment, we must learn to live with its many imperfections by embracing its better qualities and continuing to find productive ways to reject the threats it poses to the health and safety of some individuals.

Sites have adopted various methods in an attempt to reduce the worst parts of comment with different levels of success. Sites like require comments to be short and specific to a paragraph as to prevent the conversation from totally derailing. YouTube’s attempt to merge its comment system with Google+ was a failure; users did not want to have to be forced to display their identity on their comments, and the new possibilities that arose from the new system quickly became abused on a site-wide level. Furthermore, this strategy seems to hinge on the fact that commenters will be less nasty if their anonymity is stripped from them. This does not always seem to be the case, though; many Twitter users seem to forget that people other than their followers can see their tweets, falling back on excuses like “I was hacked!” when their bigoted sentiments are exposed to the public eye.

At times, we may simply become exhausted with crafting new strategies to silence the haters. So, then, it may be tempting to modify our behavior in a way that minimizes our exposure to the seemingly endless negativity supplied by comment. This is where pushback comes in. As noted in the study from Gomez and Morrison, “behavior adaptation” is a broad category that encompasses a number of strategies including cutting off the use of only certain apps, setting strict time frames for technology use, or creating “dummy accounts” to minimize spam and other unwanted communication. They note that this is by far the most commonly utilized of the five “pushback behaviors”, and I personally believe that this is the most reasonable behavior, as it does not reject entirely the idea of technology, a practice embraced by the “back-to-the-woods” behavior, but instead recognizes that like everything else, it is best enjoyed in moderation.

Omer Seydoux <seydoux.o>

Dear Professor, I hope this email finds you well.

Here is the link to my reading responses set 2: <> You can find the markdown to today’s response below.

Best, Omer


Haters gonna hate. This is a sentence that is often found in online comment sections, often just below a negative comment. In my opinion, the “never read the comments” necklace that is described in Joseph Reagle’s book, Reading the Comments, is somewhat true. I cannot remember the last time, if ever, I wrote a comment online about something that I was satisfied of. I usually write comments when I need to complain, for examples when I use Uber Eats, I only write reviews when something is wrong and never when something is great. This is why, I believe, that reading the comments can be sometimes bad, because it is most likely that people will use comments to give negative feedback because they feel the urge to complain. This takes me to the article written by Ricardo Gomez and Stacey Morrison, in which they talk about Pushback from the digital world. I think that this has a reason to do with that a great part of the comments in the digital world are filled with negativity, and this is likely to reflect on people’s mood in the real world.

Hannah Snee <snee.h>

Hi Professor, Below is the link to my second set of reading responses along with the markdown for my “Pushback” response. Best, Hannah

Pushback (4 December)

Too much candy will can leave you with cavities. Too many hours spent in the office can leave you weary. Too much time spent online can leave you obsessed with intangible interactions.

Too much of one thing is never good, even if it is a tasty sweet.

Online communication in moderation is not an awful thing, but too much of it has the potential to drive someone mad. Regarding comments, too much time spent pouring over them will inevitably lead a reader to negativity. Negativity in comments cannot be avoided. Even more broadly, Reagle states, “We live in a world in which everything can be commented on…it is not easily escaped,” (p. 182-183). In a place where comments are everywhere, there is going to be good and bad. Even if one does not comment themselves, reading comments is nearly unavoidable. While offering examples of how bloggers tackle comments on their websites, Reagle says, “Some people disable or restrict comments on their sites” (p. 172). Even in an attempt to remove comments, it is difficult to opt-out completely without losing all sense of contact since digital platforms are the primary form of communication currently.

It is not a bad thing to stay connected online. I just think people need to take comments with a grain of salt and not get hung up on everything/everyone they interact with online.

Shahad Ali Mohammed Jawad Taqi <taqi.s>

Professor Reagle,

I hope this email finds you well. Attached below is the link to the page containing the second set of my reading responses.

Thanking you Sincerely, Shahad Taqi

Shane Walsh <walsh.s>

December 4th, 2018

Comments are terrible. Those who run websites with comments know this best. As such, they put defense mechanisms in place to filter out the nonsense. In his 2015 chapter, Conclusion: Commenterrible?, Joseph Reagle writes about strategies websites have used to control the quality of comments. For example, blog Boing Boing uses a modified version of human moderation. Instead of fully deleting comments of questionable intent, such comments had their vowels removed. This strategy was cleverly dubbed “disemvoweling” (Reagle, 2015, p. 172). Ultimately, unruly comments prevailed. CNN and others use a voting system, where users can down-vote comments they deem harmful. However, this system has proven to be ineffective, as those who are down-voted are likely to post more and lower-quality comments (Reagle, 2015, p. 172). Another failed strategy was Google’s attempt at integrating YouTube and Google+ in an effort to make users comment as their real names. This ended up alienating users who preferred they pseudonymity offered by YouTube, as well as those who did not want YouTube to be a social network (Reagle, 2015, p. 176). As for success stories, comment systems that operate off of the website’s main page are shaping up to be a good solution to the comment problem. Platforms like Discourse separate the main page and comment page, while moderators can promote quality comments to the main page. This has been “incredibly effective” for early adopters (Reagle, 2015, p.173). Regardless, larger sites are opting for systems which call for “identifiable users, single sign-ons, and the social graph” to achieve quality comment sections (Reagle, 2015, p. 175). Reagle shows his skepticism for these methods, noting that such methods are designed to benefit a website’s proprietors (and advertisers) first and their users second. Reagle (2015) concludes by alluding to previous chapters while reflecting on the current state and future of comments. Reagle also answers the question if we are better off avoiding comment. This phenomenon of users purposely avoiding online content is covered extensively in Ricardo Gomez and Stacey Morrison’s (2014) Pushback: The growth of expressions of resistance to constant online connectivity. Reagle (2015) states that comments are near-inescapable, and while the negatives seem to weigh the positives, “there are many benefits to today’s comment” (p. 185).

Despite my opening sentence, I don’t believe that online communication is as awful as it’s made out to be. I think it comments people that would otherwise never be connected and enables quality dialogues and discourse. There will always be people who try to abuse online communication, but I believe that the majority of people try to put it to good use. Also, I don’t believe it’s possible to opt out of digital communication. Digital communication is now the most prevalent form of communication, and to opt-out be a major inconvenience personally and for any party trying to reach you. It is only possible to opt-out if you’re not planning on communicating with other people.

Jake Willis <willis.j>

Home Page with link to Reading Response #2

RR #5 Markup


Humans are our own greatest weakness. Our instincts often encourage us to promote and protect ourselves over everyone else. With that in mind, I can’t really blame digital communication for causing the ruckus it has. It’s an inanimate collection of code constructed and used by us, so any problems its caused are our own. In a funny (or cruel, depending on your perspective) twist of fate, “people discontent with aspects of technology use technology to complain about it.” (Gomez, 2013, p.4) We are seeing more people complain about the negatives of online communication but are still happy to engage with it. This spring was busy with the revelations of Cambridge Analytica and #DeleteFacebook, yet Facebook’s activity increased because people are so locked into the system no matter how much they complain. We fear FOMO, but we also feel the need to promote it for our own benefit.

online mindfull
online mindfull

Despite all we have learned and discussed, I continue to believe in the merits of online communication. It may not be possible to disengage from digital communication, but it is possible to push back against the negative wave that seems to drown so many. To be good online requires being good towards yourself for “as a good community require[s] moderation, individuals are at their best when mindful.” (Reagle, 2015, p.185) The meaning of face-to-face connections cannot be understated. As people find “a struggle over the meaning of friendship and acquaintance itself” online, it becomes even more important to actually hang out with your loved ones, not just chatting in an online room (Gomez, 2013, p.4). Focusing yourself on what matters most and enjoying the real world around you may seem like an impossible task with so much of our lives smooshed into our devices, but it is possible. I know because I did, and I know others can too.

black hole gif
black hole gif

Xiuye Yu <yu.xiu>

Hi, professor, Good Evening, Here is my new reading response for Dec.4th: Pushback.

“Better-Less”group of discontents are now looking for ways to pushback and resist network technological connectivity, although they are used to be the embracers of the original network society. Gomez and Morrison, in response to this phenomenon, proposed the concept of “pushback” in their research report. They pointed out that “pushback” is “an expression of those who have access and use communication technologies but decide to resist, drop off, or refuse their technologies.” In other words, it can be seen as a kind of resistance of people on the Internet to the information overload in the network society. Compared to exclusion and digital divide, the main factor for the “backtracking” phenomenon is the lack of access to communications technologies. Gomez and Morrison pointed out that internet users with information overload are attempting to control, limit, manage their exposure in the Internet and the saturation caused by ubiquitous and constantly communications technologies.In a way, the phenomenon of “pushback” also reflects people’s dissatisfaction with technology on the modern Internet. From a psychological perspective, Gomez and Morrison emphasize that people want to use technology to fulfill deeper needs and desires.But it is also worth mentioning that people’s dissatisfaction with technology on the Internet usually needs to be solved through technology.

The question that troubled me is to what’s really going on in people’s minds about whether they want to get away from Internet technology altogether or whether they want technology to advance in order to satisfy deeper desires? As we have discussed before, our network environment is suffering from information overload, and the privacy of Internet users is constantly exposing personal information in various ways. I understand people’s resistance to this situation and why. But what puzzles me is people’s ambivalence. People yearn for technological progress but resist escaping it.The two seem contradictory: if you avoid and resist technology, how do you improve it? Or if technology doesn’t improve, how does it meet the deeper needs and desires of users?What I want to know is how should people properly handle and balance these two contradictory points in today’s Internet environment?

Hope you can have a good day and thank you for reading. Bests, Xiuye Yu