Monthly Archives: May 2012

Not So Mutual Facebook Friends

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While scrolling around on the Web I found the article, “Facebook’s Privacy Trainwrek,” by Danah Boyd, which was published by Sage Publications in 2008. I agreed with everything Boyd stated about Facebook, News Feed, and the relationships we create or think we create on Facebook. Yes, I am a Facebook user and yes I say that I use Facebook to stay connected with friends. But, by “friends” I don’t mean the ones I accept on Facebook I mean the ones I was friends with before I was on Facebook.

First Boyd explains to readers that the Facebook News Feed is structured in the same structure of a blog with information being displayed in “reverse chronological order” or the newest information is posted at the top. Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook Creator) communicated to the users about the News Feed for Facebook through his blog. Similar coincidence that the Facebook creator uses a blog? I don’t think so.

Intrapersonal relationships can be created online and offline, but is it always a mutual friendship? I mean I surely have numerous Facebook Friends who I have hardly ever talked to, don’t keep up with offline, and don’t have their phone number.

In my Intro to Writing Arts class, one of my peers said that she only keeps Facebook Friends that she has their phone number to call them up or talk to them off of the internet, and I feel that is a great rule to follow when involving yourself online.

Boyd further describes how Facebook relationships are not always mutual, yet we may feel like we know one of our “Friends” really well because of their frequent posts and information from Facebook.

In one scenario Boyd describes how an individual follows their crush on Facebook and feels that they know things about them like interests, birthday, photos, who they are friends with, etc. When in fact the individual has just memorized their Facebook page and really has no relationship with their crush and may not even know they exist.

This is what users call Facebook Stalkers or as I have called them: Not so mutual friends.

In Boyd’s article he described different scenarios around the Facebook News Feed that came out on September 5th, 2006 (Boyd, 2). After the publication of the News Feed Facebook put out privacy settings because now the information users put on the Web 2.0 was popping up on everyone’s News Fed and the information was now far more assessable to Friends then before.

I have every Facebook privacy setting set because I don’t want users who aren’t my Friends to look at my information and I don’t want everyone who I am Friends with to see every picture, status, likes, wall post, or comment I make. Facebook tells too much information that not everyone wants to know, and there are those people that you feel you know or keep in touch with because of their activity on Facebook.

Most of my Facebook friends are friends offline and online with mutual relationships, and if they aren’t a mutual friend I have been slowly working on deleting those not so mutual Facebook Friends.

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Why Do I Tweet?

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Today, Twitter has over 140 million uses and over 340 million tweets are posted daily (Sternberg). The population includes average people to top charting celebrities of all ages. My twitter has tracked my college career since I joined the tweeting community during my freshman year of college in the fall of 2009. I joined Twitter because all of my new friends in college had one and were forming intrapersonal relationships on the web through Twitter, so I wanted to be apart of the discourse community where we talked about school, weekends, and other random topics.

I feel that the relationships of my followers and who I am following is an extension of the relationships we have off the internet; furthermore, it is a nice way to stay updated on news, see what my friends are doing, and to interact with them on the internet. I am on Twitter because I enjoy tweeting and reading other tweets from the users I follow.

There are many friends on Twitter I have lost touch with since high school ended or don’t talk to everyday, and having a conversation on through tweets is an informal and easy way to keep up to date on each others life from various locations. These interactions would not be possible without Twitter or other social networking websites, but because of the online interactions relationships off the Internet are able to stay connected. There is no relationship developed with the celebrities that I follow, and I understand that just because I follow them on twitter does not mean we have a developing relationship.

Sometimes Twitter users, myself included, tweet too much or things that really don’t matter within the discourse community. But, those 140 characters do mean a lot to that particular user; therefore, I try to tweet with meaning but I allow myself the pointless tweets about what I had for lunch or how bored I am because Twitter is a way for users to express themselves. However, Twitter has began to expand farther than 140 characters because people link their tweets to blogs, websites, pictures, Facebook, etc.

Overall, I use Twitter to post random thoughts, quotes, moments, or photos that come up with throughout the day. I link to other social networking sites through tweets and vise versa. But, the main reason I joined Twitter was because everyone else was doing it. In the beginning I didn’t understand the point of the 140 characters or why I would tweet daily, however in the end I fully enjoy using Twitter on a daily basis.

Sources:

The Twitter Aftershock for Digital Media

The Continued Conversation Piece, or What I Have to Say about the Future:

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After reading the SciVerse article about what speakers at the 2011 Computers and Writing Conference thought about the future, I began to think about what the future of Rowan University may be with Writing and Technology and within Writing Arts. Within the article Kristen Blair quotes from Because Digital Writing Matters (2010), saying that,

Students are doing an immense amount of writing—they’re blogging, they’re text messaging; they’re emailing, they’re updating their status messages, profile information, and live feeds on social networking and other sites; and others are “tweeting”. . . Perhaps most interesting in the midst of all this writing students are doing is that they don’t often call it “writing.” (p. 19)

As students are doing more on the Internet, classes are going to become more asynchronous through syncing on digital media devices like the iPads and computers.

Our discourse communities as students are going to be forming around the applications, programs, and the uses of our technology or digital media. Professors and college educators are realizing that technology needs to be embraced within the classroom during this generation of college students.

In the article, “iPads Could Hinder Teaching” from online journal The Chronicle, author Ben Wider says that, “Across the country, institutions had grabbed headlines for adopting Apple’s tablet computing devices,” because not only are they interactive but students are “craving” for these devices (Wieder, 1). And its true, students like my peers and myself want these products because they are the latest pieces of technology being developed and advanced yearly.

The iPad does more and more every day with software updates, the latest instant download of applications, and new models that can be used at the tip of the user’s fingers. This article really intrigued and educated me on both the pros and cons of using an iPad in the classroom. This article is slightly outdated because since it was published in 2011 there have been two new models of the iPad released; therefore, some of the cons like the “slow finger-typing” has been changed for better efficiency.

The initial con of having an iPad is the initial cost of at least five hundred dollars. Yes, the iPad costs a pretty penny. However, the long term uses and costs that can be saved will be beneficial. For example, printing expenses. As a student there are numerous classes in which we must use a lot of paper and ink for articles, drafts, and readings. With the iPad all of those documents can be accessed and referenced efficiently without the expense or time printing them. During the past school year I spent over one hundred dollars on ink, paper, and printing at the on campus library.

With an endless amount of Applications available and software updates to be downloaded the iPad can serve any purpose the users wish and change with the changes of technology.The application iAnnotate allows users to download PDFs and highlight and mark within them without printing the physical article. This is a major benefit for students who continually have to read lengthy articles for classes because they will no longer have to print these articles or keep a box of them under their bed. Instead students can have endless folders and files on their iPads.

Since I am currently saving to invest in an iPad this article has showed me the realistic uses and reality of the technology. Furthermore, reading about students and the future of writing has shown me that I don’t realize how much I actually do write on a daily basis because of the influence of technology in my life.

Sources:

Because Digital Writing Matters (2010), Dánielle DeVoss, Eideman-Aadahl, & Hicks (2010)

“IPads Could Hinder Teaching, Professors Say” (2011) The Chronicla, Ben Weider

Computers and Composition 20/20: A Conversation Piece, or What Some Very Smart People Have to Say about the Future (2011), SciVerse  ScienceDirect

Hello world!

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Hello! My name is Kaitlin Hill. I am a student at Rowan University, and starting my Senior year in the Fall. My majors are Elementary Education  and Liberal Studies for English and Writing Arts. With my education degree I am also becoming certified in Special Education and Middle School English. I play on the Rowan Field Hockey team, and I am involved on campus in Relay for Life, Ronald McDonald House, and SAAC.

This summer I am looking forward to working on this blog and learning more through the “Writing, Research, and Technology” class. I have began to love and enjoy writing more in the past year, and this summer I hope to continue my writing with technology and digital media.

Happy blogging!