What the hell am I doing? I have never been someone that writes in a diary or thought that my life was worth blogging about. The whole premise both scares and confuses me, but I guess… here I am. As a society we have moved from an oral culture to a ‘book culture’, which is also known as secondary orality (Ong 1982). This shift is what began the rapid technological advancements we have today. The transformation of the Internet into Web 2.0 has now given the everyday person the ability to become authors of content (Hew & Cheung 2013). Changes of technology and habits h
ave been a disadvantage to passive users like myself. My previous thoughts on the notion of blogging were that it was a selfish act used to promote oneself and show the world how cool they are. But after sitting in a café, rewriting my first paragraph over 13 different times and realizing that I have half filled a coffee loyalty card in one sitting, I have developed a greater respect to the skills and intricacies it requires to produce an interesting blog. So for the sake of an assignment and for my own personal growth, I am attempting to become more socially prevalent… What the hell am I doing?
The “global village” is where past and present ideas can freely interrelate in a dynamic and adaptive culture. A growing offspring of these ideas among all professionals is their tendency to use the Internet for many purposes. Amie Baumwell, a social media strategist believes that “having a social media presence isn’t an option anymore-it’s a necessity” (Durrani, 2012). In this regard I tend to agree. In the medical field, social media is used by two-thirds of the doctors for professional purposes and 94% of physicians are using consulting apps while on the job (OBizMedia 2011). These statistics are not surprising given the fact that 41% of people’s choice of doctor, hospital or medical facility is affected by social media (Ottenhoff 2012). Conversely, incorrect uses of technology can negatively affect someone’s professional standings. A study found that 43% of hiring managers admitted to using social networking sites to research potential candidates (Grasz 2014). So Ben, you’re telling me that posting a video of yourself downing a beer bong the night before an interview isn’t a good idea? Who the hell knew? The president of a creative marketing agency 23 Kazoos Wendy Kenney, agrees with the importance of social media sites. She believes that they are essential for professionals. The only problem is that many use them as an advertising medium, where they instead should be used as a listening medium (Durrani, 2012). This once again proves that the online world is a valuable and beneficial resource, but only if used correctly… No wonder why I feel so much pressure!
For me, caution has been a large part of my hesitancy to using social media, which stemmed from a personal mishap in the professional sense. During previous full time employment, I was in charge of issuing both staff and student cards. Me, being an 18 year old, thought it would be hilarious to issue myself a fake card. Loose Cannon was a nickname of mine at this time (reason not provided), so a card was made and posted on my Facebook page – 152 likes in 12 hours = new personal record. The next day at school, some students were talking and laughing about it in class and were overheard by a teacher. What then followed was a meeting with the head of school, were I was informed that it wasn’t the image professional staff should be portraying; especially as the school logo was still present. One formal warning and immediate deletion of the photo later, a lesson was learnt. This was my first and last taste of creating a negative online footprint, and made me realize that anything you do online can be discovered, even if you think you aren’t accessible by colleagues. What the hell was I doing?
As seen above, social media use can be categorized by the 7 types (Fleming 2012). In the spectrum, I fall into 3 of the demographics – spectator, collector and joiner. Since I was first given my own laptop at age 11, the online community has been a large and crucial aspect of my life. My philosophy in regards to social presence derives from Tu and McIssacs definition “a measure of the feeling of community that a learner experiences in an online environment” (2002). I believe that someone can develop a strong presence without having to post regularly and share every experience with the world. I’m a corny clique, believing that quality is better than quantity (if you can call any of my posts “good quality”). This type of usage would make me a content/open strategist (Ollier-Malaterre & Rothbard 2015). This is because I am friends with both colleagues and friends on all my accounts, but do not filter my content posted.
While I am quite a prevalent user of many social networking sites or applications (I have been asked by friends to simmer down my snapchats), this hasn’t translated to my twitter profile to date. Both due to the lack of follows and current low interest in the medium, my account is relatively quiet I have even been tasked in previous units with maintaining a healthy twitter account (1), but have yet to spark an interest in constant tweets. I have made a few tweets (2) and joke attempts (3) in the past few months, but the lack of support – and tweeting talents – has again discouraged my support of twitter.
— Ben Lawless (@BenjaminLawless) September 10, 2015
— Ben Lawless (@BenjaminLawless) April 16, 2016
— Ben Lawless (@BenjaminLawless) April 21, 2016
I am aware of the irony that is I won’t tweet due to a lack of followers, and that I have a lack of followers because I don’t tweet, which I guess leaves us in a standoff. Resolution can only occur with someone making the first move… and because I am stubborn, I now patiently await the couple of hundred followers to make the first move.
What the hell have I done? I have now written and completed my first blog. In the beginning what started as a scary and foreign project actually became pretty enjoyable. By improving and reflecting on my digital identity, it has been shown that I should see improvements in technological capabilities, career prospects, peer respect just to name a few (Ainsa 2016). So I know you are dying to ask, is this also your last ever blog? I believe I will take the advice of a great man and start to “live online (a bit)” (Brown 2016).
What the hell am I doing?
(1,084 words, not including citations and captions)
Ainsa, T 2016, ‘OLLEGE STUDENTS’ DIGITAL IDENTITY: PERCEPTIONS TOWARDS EMPLOYMENT AND CAREER’, College Student Journal, vol. 50, no. 1, masterFILE Premier
Brown, A 2016, ‘meMedia and Media Studies 2.0: Making, Sharing, Learning’, WordPress, weblog post, 5 March, retrieved 12 March 2016, < https://adamgbrown.wordpress.com/2016/03/05/memedia-and-media-studies-2-0-making-sharing-learning/>
Durrani, A 2012, ‘Making a big footprint online’, podiatary management, vol. 31, no. 6, pp. 155-160, CINAHL Complete
Fleming, G 2012, ‘Global Social Technographics Update 2011: US And EU Mature, Emerging Markets Show Lots Of Activity’, Forrester, Weblog post, 4 January, retrieved 18 April 2016, <http://blogs.forrester.com/gina_sverdlov/12-01-04-global_social_technographics_update_2011_us_and_eu_mature_emerging_markets_show_lots_of_activity>
Grasz, J 2014, ‘Number of Employers Passing on Applicants Due to Social Media Posts Continues to Rise’, According to New CareerBuilder Survey, Career Builder, retrieved 18 march 2016, <http://www.careerbuilder.com/share/aboutus/pressreleasesdetail.aspx?sd=6%2F26%2F2014&id=pr829&ed=12%2F31%2F2014>
Hew, K & Cheung, W 2013, ‘Use of Web 2.0 technologies in K-12 and higher education: The search for evidence-based practice’, Elsevier, vol.9, no.1, pp47-64, ScienceDirect
OBizMedia 2011, ‘The Doctor’s Tech Toolbox’, Infographic material, SpinaBifidaInfo, retrieved 16 April 2016, <http://www.emrthoughts.com/files/2011/07/DoctorsToolboxLrg.jpg>
Ollier-Malaterre, A & Rothbard, N 2015, ‘How to Separate the Personal and Professional on Social Media’, Harvard Business Review, retrieved 16 April 2016, < https://hbr.org/2015/03/how-to-separate-the-personal-and-professional-on-social-media>
Ong, W 1982, ‘Orality and Literacy: The technologizing of the word’, Methuen & Co. ltd, New York
Ottenhoff, M 2012, ‘Infographic: Rising Use of Social and Mobile in Healthcare’, Infographic material, thesparkreport, retrieved 16 April 2016, < http://thesparkreport.com/infographic-social-mobile-healthcare/>
Tu, C & McIssac, M 2002, ‘The relationship of social presence and interaction in online classes’, The American journal of distance education, vol. 16 no.3, pp. 131-150, Education Source
My general engagement to date has been relatively poor. I have always been someone that observed but never posted much, which is something I have relatively maintained. As I am still quite young, I am still unaware of where my life will end up and if what I say will affect my chances. While researching this assignment is changing my beliefs on the matter, it is unclear if I will be adopting an active approach after this course. I have attached the few engagements that I have undertaken.