80% Won’t Post This

…and that’s a GOOD thing.

Take a look at this popular Facebook status update…

Every person has 1000 wishes. A cancer patient only has one wish, to get better. I know that 97% of Facebookers won’t post this as their status, but my friends will be the 3% that do. In honor of someone who died, or is fighting cancer – post this for at least one hour….

Now look at this one….

Today I’m going to pause to remember all those who are suffering from cancer, as well as their friends and family who are affected by this terrible disease.

…or this one…

Please remember my friend _____, who is battling cancer right now. Feel free to repost if you know someone else that might be concerned about him/her.

The first one is trite and passive aggressive. The last two have similar messages and concerns, and the second even encourages reposting, but to me are much less offensive. There is none of the guilt-inducing “you can’t be my friend if you don’t copy me exactly” sort of language. To me the last two messages are much more effective.

Danielle Foster, a contributing writer at Suite 101, describes this type of Facebook activism very succinctly:

The purpose of raising awareness about an important cause is to inspire people to reflect on the issue. The hope is that after awareness is raised, action will follow. Do status memes promoting awareness accomplish action, or are they merely providing short-lived entertainment and self-validation?…

…What this whole message is really doing is fishing for validation under the cover of supporting cancer victims. If you are the poster’s true friend, you will re-post the message because being that person’s true friend makes you a great person who would not dare dis-honor cancer victims, or the poster’s friendship with you, by not re-posting. You are this person’s friend aren’t you? You don’t hate cancer victims, do you? You had better re-post.

Read more at Suite101: Raising Awareness With Facebook: Does It Work? http://www.suite101.com/content/raising-awareness-with-facebook-does-it-work-a319040#ixzz1D6NkBMuF

Continue reading “80% Won’t Post This”

Facebook and Online Responsibility

The problems surrounding teachers using Facebook seem to be getting more and more complex. I’ve written before about how teacher’s private use of Facebook can impact their jobs, whether justly or unjustly. The issue that was brought up recently involves teachers’ use of Facebook on private mobile devices during school hours.

This is a tricky issue. We want teachers to be doing what they are paid to do – teach their classes and monitor their students. But how do you keep this in check?

We have Facebook blocked in our district because of some of the discipline issues is creates with students. It was suggested that we consider adding restrictions on Facebook usage on private mobile devices to our Acceptable Use Policy. I flatly disagreed with that. Our AUP regulates acceptable use of district-owned equipment and services, not private equipment. I don’t think should or legally could use a policy written for district equipment to be applied to private equipment. Continue reading “Facebook and Online Responsibility”

Hidden Columbia

Tuesday I had to make one of my occasional trips down to Columbia for a meeting. The meeting was being held in an unusual location, and there were traffic detours all around the school. That meant that I saw more of Columbia neighborhoods than I normally see on one of these visits. Seeing the abandoned … Continue reading Hidden Columbia

Teachers and Facebook

Yesterday there was an article in the Greenville News about development of a policy for teacher use of Facebook. The article stated that the board was holding off on approval of the policy because some members had raised “ethical, legal and technical questions.”    The new policy would put into place a procedure for dismissing teachers … Continue reading Teachers and Facebook

Hamlet as a Facebook Feed

I was doing some research on literary characters as Facebook profiles when I came across this gem on Timothy McSween’s blog… HAMLET (FACEBOOK NEWS FEED EDITION). BY SARAH SCHMELLING – – – – Horatio thinks he saw a ghost. Hamlet thinks it’s annoying when your uncle marries your mother right after your dad dies. The … Continue reading Hamlet as a Facebook Feed

Reflections on Twitter and The Death of Conversation


A synopsis/compilation of recent conversations…

Me: Yesterday several of my friends and I went for a hike in the…

Sibling/Friend: …yeah, I read that in your blog.

Me: For our anniversary we went to Disney and…

Sibling/Friend: …I saw your posts and pictures online.

Me: Um, is there anything new I can tell you?

Sibling/Friend: [silence]

I began to wonder if blogging and social media had, in fact, killed conversation, rather than enhancing it. Continue reading “Reflections on Twitter and The Death of Conversation”

Targeting to the Extreme

I am not naive.  I am aware of the level of targeting and profiling that advertisers use to get their message across, especially on the Internet.  However, every now and then it really catches me off-guard.  Facebook is notorious for this, sending ads my way that read “Sing in Italy this summer” because I’ve listed … Continue reading Targeting to the Extreme

Blurring the Lines of Webdom

I’ve been tweaking my online presence over the past several weeks. As I’ve gotten more involved with Facebook, I’ve started pulling in RSS feeds from Twitter, Friendfeed, Flickr, and most recently RandomConnections so that all of these automatically update on my Facebook profile. For me it’s a simple matter of laziness. I’d prefer to type … Continue reading Blurring the Lines of Webdom