Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Is Social Media Helping or Hurting?

(The First In A Series)
Twitter is something that has really peaked my interest in the past couple of years. I read a great article in the WSJ that gave some pretty good insight to tweeting. The one thing I had no clue about with regards to Twitter was the fact that it can be so much more than just a place for people to rant about the trending social issue of the hour. Twitter is a very strong tool for learning. You heard me; learning can be accomplished on Twitter. Simply by following people or groups that have an interest in what you are interested in, you can gain great knowledge. Twitter is a networking tool for industries. We can use my experience as an example. I typed "higher education" in the search bar within Twitter. I was quickly shown a lot of people and organizations that frequently tweet about higher education. I chose to follow a few that I believed would give me what I wanted, more insight into higher ed. However, there is another side to the Twitter world that I can honestly say drives me nuts. It seems that some like to use Twitter for their own personal attack party. They will toss out clever comments and witty dialogue about a certain issue that is in the media at the time. I'm not suggesting that Twitter is only for professional use, because that would be ridiculous. The biggest problem I have is that is seems to be the meeting place for people who are unwilling to have a face-to-face conversation. Social media has made our culture weaker because we no longer deal with conflict in an effective manner. Instead of making a call or dropping by to see someone we tweet about how much we dislike what he or she is doing. Twitter has many good aspects, but at times it offers an avenue for adults to act like children. You can follow me by searching for @n_b_c.

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