Topic 1 – Digital “Visitors” and Digital “Residents”

Who is digital visitors? Who is digital residents? What do they do and why digital? This blog-post will explain the two different concepts.

The term resident means residing at a place which briefly also explains the term digital residents they “resides” online.

giphygiphy (1)

Spending most of their time creating multiple identities for different communities online, as they have different image to portray to each community. Digital residents feel more comfortable expressing themselves through online platforms and spend time in maintaining it regularly. Forming a larger social circle of online friends compared to reality. Using social media platforms to maintain friendships online. At the same time bringing daily recreations online example: shopping, watching movies online and etc; Giving a portion of their life to the internet.

Digital “visitors” are unlike the “residents”. They are the ones that goes online for a purpose. Example, a digital visitor decides to go on a vacation, he/she will go online to book their air tickets and once he/she is done they go off. They hardly spend time online unless with a specific purpose. Probably will just have 1 online identity to follow the trend/majority to have a social media account(Facebook, Twitter). They are unable to stay online for long without a purpose.

giphy (2)

With the lack of knowledge about online communities and don’t really express themselves much as they are unsure about the environment. They will have the tendency to seek other alternatives (offline) besides the internet example to maintain relationships.

My point of view is that people who are awkward or uncomfortable socializing face-to-face would probably go online to express themselves. Personalities that are less social-able, outgoing or low self esteem. Individual that prefers socializing through a “medium”. Personally, i think myself a digital “tenant”, a combination of both. I like to socialize around alot but in order to maintain and keep up with my friends i would require help from social platforms. I can say nearly all my friends have a Facebook account. Yes, i could stay all day online playing games for leisure but it’s a form of stress-relief activity, i’ll go online to play weekly but not daily activity.

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Each individual have their own preference on which way they are more comfortable in expressing themselves, some just live in the online world taking it as internet is part of their life.

References [accessed 30 Oct 2015]
[accessed 30 Oct 2015]
[accessed 30 Oct 2015]

White, D. S., & Cornu, A. L. (2011). Visitors and Residents: A new typology for online engagement.First Monday, 16(9).


5 thoughts on “Topic 1 – Digital “Visitors” and Digital “Residents”

  1. Hello Emilia!
    Reading your post made me understand more of how personalities can also be a determinant factor of whether one can be a digital “visitor” or “resident”, which I did not actually realized it.

    I agree with your point of view about someone who is socially awkward in real life may be more expressive in the digital world. I believe we all had such experiences in our life before but maybe when we were younger or when we made new friends!

    I also felt that I’m taking up both roles as a digital “visitor” and “resident” and I guess with the technology improving, very soon everyone will become a “resident” in the future where the digital world becomes a part of our lives. Hopefully people will still be able to express themselves more in the real world than in the digital world by then!



  2. Pingback: Topic 1: Summary and Comments | YJunNing

  3. Hey there Emilia!

    I would like to begin my comment with “Great Job!”. I can see a lot of effort that you put into this blog post, having a proper flow in explaining the differences between a digital “visitor” and “resident”. You went a step further by including an image showcasing a table that elaborates on the differences between the two. I love it!

    You ended the post with labeling yourself as a digital “tenant”, which you feel is a combination of both. Again, i really like your elaborations to further prove your point. (P.S. i think i might label myself as a digital “tenant” as well.)

    I definitely learned a new way in answering for my future topics from your post. Thank you for the lovely insights. 🙂

    Hope you enjoyed your weekends!



  4. Hi Emilia!
    I am impressed by the way you displayed the distinction between ‘residents’ and ‘visitors’. It did not come across my view in the difference in personalities. I am sure that it will help me understand better in this topic.

    I like the way you categorize yourself as a mixture of both – ‘tenant’. This new term has kept me thinking about my usage of the internet, and i do consider myself to be a mixture of both as well. However, to be a little more detailed, I am a mixture of both with a little extreme on the ‘visitor’ end, as I only use social media as a mean of communication with my friends when there is a need.

    Apart from that, as mentioned in your post, visitors are unable to stay online without a purpose, could it be that they don’t wish to or don’t see a point doing so?

    Have a great day ahead!


  5. Pingback: Topic 1 – Reflective Summary | Exploring a new journey

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