Tag Archives: Social Media

Balancing Social Media: Dangers and How to Stay Safe

Social Media can be both glorious and dangerous. Social media can lead to great connection, but it can also lead to unsafe situations or peril.

University of the Pacific has a safety section on their website, and one page is about social media safety and concerns. With the current dangers involving social media going on, I would like to share them.

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  • Identity Theft
  • Catfishing
  • Employers can see inappropriate content leading to termination
  • School leaders determining expelling.

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How to Stay Safe

  • Don’t publicly post private information
  • Adjust privacy settings for specific posts
  • Be wary of who is following you before you post

Social Media can cause identity problems. People can pretend to be you, or pretend to be someone else to use your information or emotions. We need to make the right connections and be safe while doing so. Also, everyone must be careful about how they share. Opportunities can be squashed if an employer, professor, dean, or principal sees the “wrong” things. Be wise about social media.

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Social Media: Open Door to Learning?

George Couros, the “Principal of Change”, wrote an article on his blog entitled “3 Ways Social Media Can Improve School Culture”.

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His three points of improvement are increased visibility,  increased accessibility, and a flattened organization.

Visibility:

I can completely agree with his notion that social media will optimize visibility. When I was in second grade, I had a very hard time understand what lessons were being taught when I merely had to read, because I couldn’t see the projector screen. The words were all too fuzzy for me. If I had a tablet in front of me, I would be able to participate more efficiently. Also, I am more comfortable sharing my answers without having to speak out loud. If my classes used social media to create electronic forums, I would feel a lot more at ease.

Accessibility:

When more people connect, more success is created. This is what I received from this particular point, and I completely agree! Creation needs more collaboration.

A Flattened Organization:

When I first read this phrase, I will honestly admit I had no idea what it meant. Once he linked me to his “Everyone’s A Teacher and Everyone’s A Learner” article, I finally understood. Everyone can teach and be taught together in this expanding technological world.

Social media will open the doors to easier communication and social interaction. The world needs to embrace it.

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Pain in the Palm of Your Hands

Blogger, Liz Romeo, tweeted an article about cyber bullying.

As a future educator, I am extremely interested in this topic. It’s important to be aware of what’s going on in a child’s world, and the proper ways to deal with it. Cyber bullying is becoming such a prevalent issue amongst teenagers, and even children. Growing up in a time when social media is booming makes it so easy and accessible for situations like these to occur literally in the palm of your hands.

The article mentions how experts are now referring to cyber bullying as “social assassination.”

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Cyber bullying incidents really can have a negative impact on people. Threats can even be made through social media. Not only is a situation like this very upsetting, but it can also be extremely scary.
Cell phones make it even easier for this to happen. This small, hand-held device, has the ability to do so much damage. It all just depends on the person’s actions behind it. Before social media became so popular, there weren’t as many ways for bullying to occur. Now, there are so many ways to attack a person, which is extremely scary.

Another huge issue is that a lot of these new applications and websites allow things to be posted anonymously. Now, people can be attacked, and not even know whoimgres is doing the attimgresacking. The article mentions websites like Ask.fm, and Whisper, which allow posts to be anonymous.

Apps like this make it so simple for cyber bullying to occur to anyone, anywhere in the world.

“Why be mean to someone you don’t even know” -Lance Arrieta, high school sophomore

It’s so clear how much technology is impacting the social world. Now, threats and negative comments can so easily made and posted for the entire world to see.

Personally, I hope we can find a way to eliminate this type of bullying to the best of our ability.

The article provides a link to http://www.stopbullying.gov/. Go here to help educate yourself about cyber bullying, as well as learn ways to address these situations. Educate yourselves so we can put an end to this “social assassination!”

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Think Before You Post!

Fellow blogger, Alexis Lane, tweeted about an article called “Talk to Teens About Being Responsible on Social Media.”

Teenagers growing up in this technological age now find social media to be a way of life. Are there dangers involved in this? They need to keep in mind that the footprint they leave on social media can have an impact their futures.

“I tell my kids every horror story I hear of students being rejected from college or an accepted student having his/her admission rescinded because of something they wrote on Facebook or something they tweeted. It is very hard to eliminate a ‘social footprint,'” Laurie Weingarten, mother of two teenagers, said.

Once something is deleted from the internet, is it ever actually gone?

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It is so important to pay attention to the things that are posted on these websites. You never know how one slip-up can effect you in the future.

The article makes it clear that college admissions officers do in fact look at applicants social media pages to learn more about them. Adults need to make kids aware of this before they begin to make their online footprint. If they see something that they dislike, even something so minor, they can immediately decide to kick that applicant to the curb. Colleges do not want someone with a bad online reputation to represent their institution.

It is so important for teenagers to learn ways to use social media responsibly. A parent suggests that a good way to make teens aware of the existing issues is to make them feel uncomfortable about it. Do this by continuously asking them about their cyber life. Another suggestion is to ask your child for help using a social media app. This way, you can really get a glimpse of what they’re doing on social media, and how they go about using it.

By staying involved in their child’s usage, parents can really see if there are prevalent issues. Then, they can be addressed right at the start. By doing this, teens will become a lot more contentious about their usage.

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Social Media: Affecting Futures

As previously discussed on this blog, social media is something that may have consequences. The use of social media is a necessity to the new generation of students and therefore they are at the most risk. Because of the young ages that begin social media use, it is important for parents to take action and provide caution with their children.

Mother and daugther smiling at laptop while using webcamFellow blogger, Alexis Lane tweeted about an article by Alexandra Pannoni, she discusses the actions that parents may be able to take in order to prevent their child from potentially threatening their future. The first step in helping your child understand their actions is open communication about the different scenarios social media could cause. Showing general interest in the social media apps that your child is using may be able to cause them to think more consciously.

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Accessibility is Key

There are many writing applications that are available to download on a Smartphone. Werdsmith is an intriguing app by Nathan Tesler that assists writers in completing their work. The application allows you to write, share, and receive ideas.

This application is a basic way for writers to keep track of multiple writings on their one device. Werdsmith organizes all different writings into two categories: ideas and projects. The ideas section is basically a place to jot down draft ideas that you are willing to explore. The projects column is a place for almost finished or finished ideas that have progressed into projects. There is a place on this app for you to plug in your e-mail address, which allows you to connect your projects and ideas with your e-mail as well as fellow e-mail addresses you may have such as friends, publishers, etc. This application is unique because it allows the writer to pick a time preference when they enjoy writing, such as the morning or the evening. After picking the time preference, Werdsmith will nudge you (alert your phone) to begin writing which is a struggle for many writers.

This app adds a bit of flavor to the process of writing and publication that many new age writers are looking for. With Werdsmith’s accessibility and reliability, it is easy for writers to be intrigued by this application.

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Keep The Social Spirit Alive

Everyone is forewarned that the Internet is forever. In other words, the things that you post on your social media sites can pop in different aspects of your life at any time. Individuals have become cautious with the amount of information they have put onto these sites because of this reason. However, in Laurent Francois article he claims the exact opposite. Francois believes that just as technologies fade, social media fades as well.

Francois argument is accurate because we have seen AOL instant messenger fade as well as Myspace. Facebook is in it’s way out the technological door as well. Francois’ point is that while these social media outlets fade out, our information and history with the sites go with them. In an article by Chris Anderson and Michael Wolff, “The Web Is Dead. Long Live the Internet.” they address these exact issues relating it to the shift from the world web to simple internet explorer platforms. They write “Over the past few years, one of the most important shifts in the digital world has been the move from the wide-open Web to semiclosed platforms that use the Internet for transport but not the browser for display.”

Technology and social medias are fast pace changing and there is no option to slow the process down, but it is possible to preserve our aspects on these social media devices. Twitter’s most recent update has made all members tweets public, which has eliminated the option for anything to be changed or forgotten with the emergence of new technologies.

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School Decisions

Social media applications have become an aspect to consider while job hunting. While looking for a new job, perspective employers may look into these apps in order to figure out more information than an interview would be able to administer. People have become more cautious while using these sites which has involved many restrictions. Now colleges have turned to these sites to help them accept and deny potential students.

In an article by Daniela Perallon explains the studies that have shown more universities using this as a real test to screen incoming students. Students who post a lot on their social media accounts usually are posting negatively. These teens are being monitored not only by their own school but by potential universities as well.

For students who do not post inappropriate things on these sites have an even better chance of being accepted. While students who post negative things such as drinking do not stand a chance. Schools have been advising their students to post positive things on their page to hopefully attract universities such as community service, good grades, etc.

The social media sites have become a part of our everyday lives and students can not expect to have privacy from them if they continue to use them at this rate.

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Communication Breakdown?

Susan Tardanico’s article “is Social Media Sabotaging Communication?” is basically the (somewhat irrational, in my opinion)  fear of every tech-adverse person you’ve ever met, summarized and neatly packaged into an article. Yes, some interesting points are raised. Is it easier today to hide your try identity, and consequently, motives and feelings with the advent of social media? Perhaps, perhaps. And yet, I can’t help but wonder is this is really a sabotage of communication?

While the suicide attempt that Tardanico mentions is certainly tragic, I don’t think that this is an example of a break in communication. If anything, I would argue that social media is still improving communication in this situation-not because the end result was positive, but only because it achieved the communicative goal of it’s user; in this case, it was unfortunately deception.  For many people around the world, Social Media is viewed as a wonder of communication-building virtual bridges across the world, linking together people who otherwise would have never met.  In other words, I would suggest viewing Social Media the way we view tools, like the hammer, the pencil, or the gun. How it is used, and what effect it has, depends on the motivation of the person using it. Tardanico does seem to be getting to this point with her list of “Tips” for E communication at the end, but I’ll say it more plainly. Social Media can certainly be used to sabotage communication, but only if we let it-or perhaps, more accurately, if we want it too.

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Social Media Scare?

Recently, social media has proven to be very powerful, now in threatening ways.

A high school in Manhattan Beach was closed down due to threats posted on the social media app Yik Yak.

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Yik Yak is an app that connects students from specific colleges and allows people to post anonymously on a message feed. One student in particular used the app to send anonymous threats to the school. The administrators closed down the school in response to the threats.

Is this what social interaction is coming to?

People are now communicating to people anonymously. The power of the written word can tear apart the benefits of social interaction. Closing down a high school over short messages is a serious matter.

Regarding the movement of writing and social media, we all need to rethink authenticity with user creation. The fear of anonymity can only grow and get worse. Even though Yik Yak’s spokespeople state that the app is only designed for college students, it is very clear that anyone can get a hold of this app.

Writing and social interaction shouldn’t be about threats and scaring people. Hopefully the social apps of the future can spark positive change in the ways we communicate.

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