Does texting mean the death of good writing skills? John McWhorter posits that there’s much more to texting -- linguistically, culturally -- than it seems, and it’s all good news.
In this TED talk, linguist John McWhorter thinks about language in relation to race, politics and our shared cultural history.
Social media and text messaging have assumed a dominant role in communication among adolescent society. And, as common in teenage social environments, these circumstances often involve online teasing and harassing. This has become known as “bullying.”
Delaware state Attorney General, Beau Biden, describes cyber bullying as a communication that “interferes with a student's physical well-being, is threatening or intimidating, or is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it is likely to limit a student's ability to participate in or benefit from the educational programs of the school.”
According to Delaware Online, the state recently implemented a law enforcing that schools penalize cyber bullying issues the same as they would for incidents that happen within school walls.
Many states have begun to implement similar laws enforcing stricter punishments for those engaged in cyber bullying, and sometimes the victims are not only teens. NPR recently addressed a North Carolina law that was passed to protect teachers against bullying from their students.
A teacher at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School had a student create a fake Twitter account under the teacher's identity, and posted offensive comments. Under new laws, students charged with such offenses could potentially face a month in jail and fines of up to $1,000.00.
The recent International Journal of Technoethics article “Cyberbullying: A Sociological Approach” evaluates the concepts of bullying and cyber bullying and addresses the emerging nature of these occurrences: “Cyberbullying has become a major social concern because it raises questions about the ethical use of technology.
In recent years, this has been the subject of research and information and prevention activities for different groups such as governmental and non-governmental organizations and schools and parents’ associations to protect against the misuse of technology.”
Written by José Neves and Luzia de Oliveira Pinheiro of the University of Minho, Portugal, the article features studies evaluating Portuguese University students in observation and focus groups, interviews, and investigations that aims to explore and define the characteristics of cyberbullying in Portugal.
A new study from cable industry association CTAM – and conducted by Nielsen – looks at how we talk about television, what we talk about, when and with whom this chatter takes place, and how this dialogue influences TV engagement and tune-in behavior.
Games for a Digital Age: K-12 Market Map and Investment Analysis includes a sector analysis and market map of game‐based learning initiatives with an analysis of relevant trends in education and digital technology that are likely to impact development of a robust game-based learning market segment.
By formulating a new framework for understanding the changing dynamics of purchase decisions at the school, extended learning, and consumer levels including a “follow the money” analysis, this report will guide efficient use of existing capital and examine where new investment would be most productive.
Conducted and written by Dr. John Richards, Leslie Stebbins and Dr. Kurt Moellering, the report synthesizes findings from extensive market research and a series of fifty interviews with leaders in the developer and publishing industries, and from the government, foundation and research sectors.
In many communities, after the library and the computer lab close for the night, there is often only one place to turn for students without internet access at home: the local McDonald's.
In this interesting and sobering example of the digital divide, WSJ's Anton Troianovski reports from Citronelle, Alabama on the daunting logistics of writing 8th-grade paper when you don't have home Internet.
A year-end review from Trendrrreveals that sports (31%) and reality (17%) are the primary genres generating social TV buzz, combining to account for about half of social TV conversations between January 1 and November 30 2012.
Drama (11%) and comedy (5%) also played a role in the social TV landscape, with the remaining 36% of conversations taking place around the aggregate of other, miscellaneous TV genres.
Source: The Trendrr Blog | Click Image to view LARGE
I've teamed up again with my writing partner, Dr. Mercedes Fisher, to take a deeper look at how designing for social spaces can help foster a deeper sense of community among students, teachers and the course content.
I'm pleased to announce that our book chapter, How Social Design Influences Student Retention and Self-Motivation in Online Learning Environments, has been published in Social Media and the New Academic Environment.
But beyond the classroom, these best practices can be integrated into any online community, forum discussion or informal online education environment.
What do we know about young kids and the online social networking sites in which they participate?
In a new report published by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center , Drs. Deborah Fields and Sara Grimes delve into landscape of kids and social media and raise some important questions that deserve more attention.Kids Online: A new research agenda for understanding social networking forums
A growing number of kids at increasingly younger ages are engaging in online social networking today-a development that is leading to a surge of news stories, media attention, and economic investment.
In this paper, scholars Sara Grimes and Deborah Fields argue that these shifts in usage and public discussion demand a better understanding of the ways that social networking sites mediate kids' socializing and the opportunities and limits they place on kids' participation, particularly for young children.
The paper, Kids online: A new research agenda for understanding social networking forums, is a first step to documenting pressing questions about children's involvement online, namely:
° Which children are using social networking forums and what are they doing there?
° What do we know about how online experiences influence children's social, cognitive, and creative development?
° What kind of research do we need to do now, in order to understand more deeply who is going online, what kinds of things they are doing, and what opportunities or challenges are involved?
° And finally, what should designers, educators, and parents be aware of as they navigate these new environments and try to help children make the most of them?
Research conducted by Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project has found that half of all adult cell phone owners now incorporate their mobile devices into their television watching experiences.
These “connected viewers” used their cell phones for a wide range of activities during the 30 days preceding our April 2012 survey:
- 38% of cell owners used their phone to keep themselves occupied during commercials or breaks in something they were watching
- 23% used their phone to exchange text messages with someone else who was watching the same program in a different location
- 22% used their phone to check whether something they heard on television was true
- 20% used their phone to visit a website that was mentioned on television
- 11% used their phone to see what other people were saying online about a program they were watching, and 11% posted their own comments online about a program they were watching using their mobile phone
- 6% used their phone to vote for a reality show contestant
Taken together, 52% of all cell owners are “connected viewers”—meaning they use their phones while watching television for at least one of these reasons.
You can read the full report, The Rise of the 'Connected Viewer'.
Profile “pruning” is on the rise. Deleting unwanted friends, comments and photo tags grows in popularity.
Over time, as social networking sites have become a mainstream communications channel in everyday life, profile owners have become more active managers of their profiles and the content that is posted by others in their networks.
According to a new Pew Internet study, two-thirds of profile owners (63%) have deleted people from their networks or friend lists, up from 56% in 2009. Another 44% say they have deleted comments that others have made on their profile, up from just 36% two years prior.
And as photo tagging has become more automated on sites like Facebook, users have become more likely to remove their names from photos that were tagged to identify them; 37% of profile owners have done this, up from 30% in 2009.
Deleting social media comments is part of the reputation management work of being a young adult.
All users have become more likely to delete comments on their profiles over time, but this is especially true of young adults.
It is now the case that 56% of social media users ages 18-29 say they have deleted comments that others have made on their profile, compared with 40% of those ages 30-49, 34% of those ages 50-64 and 26% of social media users ages 65 and older.
In contrast to the gender differences with unfriending, male and female social media users are equally as likely to say that they have deleted comments that others have made on their profile (44% of men and women report this).
The task of removing photo tags is also much more common among young adults.
Whether because there are simply more photos being shared or there is more sensitivity to their content, young adult social media users are the most likely age group to report removal of photo tags.
Fully half of young adult social media users (49%) say they have deleted their name from photos that were tagged to identify them.
That compares to 36% of social media users ages 30-49, 22% of those ages 50-64 and only 16% of those ages 65 and older. As with comments, there are no significant gender differences; male and female users are equally likely to delete photo tags (36% vs. 38%).
The series of studies, known as the “Ethnographic Research in Illinois Academic Libraries Project (ERIAL)” is a collaborative effort by five Illinois universities that aims to better understand students’ research habits. Its findings are set to be published by the American Library Association this fall.
One hundred and fifty-six students who were interviewed at the five schools about their research habits mentioned Google more than any database. The 60 students who participated in a “research process interview” — with researchers following them around the library as they searched for information — frequently used the search engine poorly. And when they used other databases, they expected them to work the same way that Google does.
“It wasn’t so much that students were inefficient in their use of Google, but rather that students are often ill-equipped to sufficiently evaluate or refine the results that are returned,” says Andrew Asher, an anthropologist at Bucknell University and one of the project leads. “…I don’t think this is a problem limited to students.”
Three trends are having a key impact in how consumers are using the internet: the rise of the 'packaged internet', with access through apps rather than browsers; an explosion of professional content and real-time social all contributing to what GlobalWebIndex founder Tom Smith sees as the rise of the social entertainment age.
According to Smith, 'The open browser-based internet has failed to create the economics to deliver professional media business online, as advertising could not demand the premiums needed and consumers are unwilling to pay for content delivered through a browser.'
GlobalWebIndex's free report analyses the current situation and considers the implications for professional media, content producers and brands.
- Gen Y, Social TV and Multiplatform Media Consumption
- Study Reveals Shift as Social Networks Become "Social Entertainment
- MTV Turns To Twitter And Facebook To Power New Flagship Show
- eGuides TV Web Extensions
- Bravo Virtual Season Finale Party a Big Hit with Viewers
- Report: Gen Y Wants TV to Get More Social
- I Want My Twitter TV?
Facebook, like many communication services and social media sites, uses its Terms of Service (ToS) to forbid children under the age of 13 from creating an account.
Such prohibitions are not uncommon in response to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), which seeks to empower parents by requiring commercial Web site operators to obtain parental consent before collecting data from children under 13.
Given economic costs, social concerns,and technical issues, most general–purpose sites opt to restrict underage access through their ToS. Yet in spite of such restrictions, research suggests that millions of underage users circumvent this rule and sign up for accounts on Facebook.
Given strong evidence of parental concern about children’s online activity, this raises questions of whether or not parents understand ToS restrictions for children, how they view children’s practices of circumventing age restrictions, and how they feel about children’s access being regulated.
This paper provides survey data that show that many parents know that their underage children are on Facebook in violation of the site’s restrictions and that they are often complicit in helping their children join the site.
The data suggest that, by creating a context in which companies choose to restrict access to children, COPPA inadvertently undermines parents’ ability to make choices and protect their children’s data. Our data have significant implications for policy–makers, particularly in light of ongoing discussions surrounding COPPA and other age–based privacy.
A few takeaways:
- “As a result of COPPA, lying about one’s age has become normal, and parents often help children lie, [which] creates safety and privacy issues.”
- “Online safety and privacy are of great concern to parents, but most parents do not want solutions that result in age-based restrictions for their children.”
- “Parents are open to recommended age ratings and other approaches that offer guidance without limiting their children’s access.”
- 84% were aware their children signed up and, of that 84%, nearly two-thirds (64%) even “helped create the account.
- 53% of the parents know Facebook has a minimum age; 35% think it’s “a recommendation, not a requirement”
- 78% reported various reasons that make it acceptable for their children to ignore or violate minimum age restrictions online.”
- “Because children lie about their age, these sites still collect data about children under 13 that COPPA would otherwise prohibit without explicit parental consent.”
- “Such a high incidence of parent-supported Terms of Service circumvention results in a normalization of the practice of violating online rules. This results in a worst-case scenario where none of COPPA’s public policy goals for mediating children’s interactions with these websites are met.”
- “Instead of providing more tools to help parents and their children make informed choices, industry responses to COPPA have neglected parental preferences and have altogether restricted what is available for children to access.”