Module 1.2 – Tribalism

As an antithesis to Howe’s “Cyberspace is no place for tribalism”, I wanted to highlight this interesting journal article I found which appropriates the language of indigenous people to discuss the potential sociocultural benefits of being part of a “tribe” in the online world:

An Online Community as the New Tribalism: The World of Warcraft

In particular I was drawn to the concept that the authors of this paper would feel the best way to describe the building of an online world or community would be “tribalism” when World of Warcraft happens to have its own nomenclature for this type of group already in place (“guilds”) which would have probably been more natural terminology for an article of this sort. ┬áThis article discusses the social benefit to the use of joining an online “tribe”. ┬áThat alone makes one think of the significant cultural appropriation taking place, that articles writing about something as (relatively speaking) insignificant could feel comfortable taking the language of enormous swaths of people to explain the experience of community/online world-building.

I think it also brings up some thoughts about the way in which we see ourselves in online communities, like this? Is there space for indigenous internet users to actually build tribal spaces online that feel authentic?

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