Blurbs about #MJD219 and tales of my life

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The Professional Aspect of Social Media

In MJD219 before our Thanksgiving break, we watched a panel discussion about the negatives and the positives of posting certain things to your social media accounts. You can find the video for the panel discussion here.

One of the major things that the panelists talked about, and the most important takeaway for me is that you have to be aware where the information that you are posting or sharing is coming from. One of the panelists, Steve Fox from the University of Masschusetts, mentioned that before Joe Paterno had actually died, he read on Twitter that one of the people who he followed had tweeted that he had died, and Steve Fox was about to hit the retweet button, but then felt that he should do some research before posting, which was smart as ESPN reported it to be false. This takeaway tells me that you cannot always trust what you read. If you are using your Twitter or Facebook professionally (and even if you are not, this is still a good practice), you should make sure that you know that what you are posting is true. You do not want to put false information on the World Wide Web. There are so many people who could see that and it could be catastrophic if it is false and it comes back to you.

One of the questions that the panel discussion raised to me was should you trust anything that you read online? I believe that the answer to this is a no (even though it could be true, it is just out of personal safety that you should not believe everything when you first see it). I think that you should wait until you see a number of powerful news sources who are writing about it for you to believe it, or post about it. One of the examples that they talked about in the panel discussion was the Sandy Hook shootings, and how people took to online and started posting about who the suspects were and this dramatically affected the lives of those who were affected, especially if they were false accusations, and they were putting false information out to their audiences which could have resulted in mass panic. You have to be aware of what you are posting because, even if it is a private account, people can make the information that you post public.

I do not think that this will change the way that I use social media. I do not really post anything that has to do with anything big really. I post mainly things that I find cool or funny, or just things about my day. I usually don’t take to social media right away if I want to retweet something either. I usually wait a few hours and see it multiple times so that I know that it is true so I am not posting something such as a famous person has died when in fact they are living happily and healthily in their home. I do not want to put out false information, and I have always been very cautious of that.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, I hope that you enjoyed it.

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Our Google Hangout

Last week in MJD219, we finally had our Google Hangout that we had been planning for most of the semester. It was one of the coolest things that I had ever done in a class. It seemed to go really well (we had a few technical difficulties, but we ended up working through it and completing our project on a high note). I felt that it was really cool for all of us there also because we got to see firsthand the students talking about their experiences studying abroad. I also thought it was cool because I was in the room with one of the girls in the video, and I could also watch the YouTube live stream to see how it was going.

For this project, I was a member of the booking group. This was slightly difficult for me because I do not know many people who have studied abroad. In fact, I believe I only know one person who has actually studied abroad and she was abroad for only about one month, and the place that she was studying was already being covered in our hangout. Some of the things that I did for the project were, as a group, we all came together as the booking group and brainstormed ideas, such as having all of the people who would be on video be in separate rooms so that there would be no feedback on the videos. I also promoted the hangout through Tweets that you can see here on my Storify. I also told my friends about the hangout so that they would know what was going on, and showed them the flyers that had been hung up so that they knew more details.

On the night of the hangout itself, I showed up around 6 to help set up, and went around the building to find classrooms that were not being used so that the people who were being interviewed did not have to sit on the floor in the hallway or be in the same room as everyone else. I then met with one of the girls who had studied abroad, Kate, and we went into one of the classrooms and I sat there in case she had any technical difficulties (at first her camera would not show her on video, so I had to run back and forth between the main room and our room to see if it was fixed). 

You can watch the entire video of the Hangout here.

Overall, I thought this was a really cool experience. It took a lot of time to set up, and there were many emails exchanged between our group. I felt bad about not knowing any of the people who were being interviewed, and also not knowing anyone who had gone abroad before because I felt that it rendered me useless to my group at times, but I did my best to help the group whenever possible and show that I wanted to be there and help out. Below are a few screenshots from the video.

 

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Thank you for taking the time to read this, I hope you enjoyed it. Take the time to click that link and watch the Hangout yourself!

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Social Media Policies

Recently in MJD219, we talked about Social Media Policies within companies. We started by forming our own idea of a Social Media Policy. We came up with ideas such as:

Be responsible with your posts.

No cursing or using words that reflect badly on your or the company you represent.

No posting of illegal activity.

Do not post pictures of you under the influence.

And so on. We were then given the task to look at an actual company’s Social Media Policy. The company that I chose to look at was the Coca-Cola Company. You can find their Social Media Policy here.

Overall, I like the policy that Coca-Cola has presented. It is not too strict, but it is also not laid back. They are quick to say that they will look into the posts of their workers and that, even if their job does not revolve around Social Media they still represent the company, so do not post anything that reflects poorly on the company. I think that this is a really good thing to post because they are being honest with their employees. They also say that on the company Social Media, they cannot post private information that they might have, and that they want you to be real with the people. I think that this is good because it shows honesty in the company.

My one critique is that I think that they should have posted something about the language that workers use on their Social Media. They do say be responsible in your posting, but they never say things such as do not post pictures of yourself getting drunk or do not post posts in which you swear a lot. These things reflect badly on the company also in that if people see posts like those, they will think that those are the kind of people who Coca-Cola hires. I think that in this manner they should be a bit more strict. Whether people want to admit it or not, those are things that many people post on their Social Media accounts, and it reflects poorly on the company. It is understandable if you say a mild curse word every now and then or post a picture of yourself (if you are of age) drinking a beer every now and then, but do not make it a common occurrence.

Thank you for reading what I had to say, I hope you enjoyed it.

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User-Generated Content

Recently in MJD219, we were taught about using user-generated content in our work. There are several things that are good about doing this, as well as several things that are not good about doing this. 

To help with the research for this, I used this blog post, as well as this link provided by our professor.

Like I had previously stated, there are many benefits to using user-generated content in your work. For instance, you are making a connection with your audience, and it is a good way to find out more local information. You can use the knowledge that the people have of what is going on, so that if you cannot physically get out, you can have a member of your audience act as a field guide for you.They take pictures a lot of the time, as well as having information that reporters cannot always get immediately. You want to lead a conversation with the audience, but you also want them to interact as well.

However, just as there are good ways to use user-generated content, there are also bad ways. The first is that you do not always know if the information that you are getting is correct. One of the things that often happens when using user-generated content is that pictures or information is sent around a vast network of people very fast. The people themselves trust that this is true information and post it immediately, but you as the reporter have to make sure that it is factual before posting because you have a reputation. One of the things that we as reporters are encouraged to do is to seek out the original poster of the pictures or the information and find out more about the posting, rather than just what we are hearing from others. If you do not know where something is from or cannot prove that it is factual, the responsible thing to do is to not post it at all.

More information can be found in the above links if  you would like to continue reading about this.

Thank you for taking the time to read what I have posted, I hope you enjoyed it.

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Live Tweeting Project

We were recently asked in MJD219 to Live Tweet an event that interested us. The event that I chose was the Saint Michael’s College Women’s Soccer game against Pace. For this project, I used two hashtags in each of my Tweets. I used the hashtags #smcvtsoccer and #mjd219.
  1. And a quick goal to start off the game! Saint Mike’s leads Pace 1-0 #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  2. And Saint Mike’s called for the penalty, but no cards given #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  3. Saint Mike’s with a close shot, but saved by Pace goalie #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  4. Pace had a chance but basically walked the ball out of bounds #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  5. Pace with a shot over the goal, Saint Mike’s still leads 1-0 #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  6. Saint Mike’s with two near misses! SMC still leads Pace 1-0 #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  7. Pace ties the game up at 1 apiece with a penalty kick header after a handball by SMC #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  8. Saint Mike’s with a nice attempt on the corner kick #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  9. HALFTIME! Saint Mike’s and Pace tied up at 1 goal each #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  10. SMC almost has their second goal but Pace goalie saved it #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  11. Saint Mike’s with another close shot but another save by Pace. Game still knotted at 1-1 #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  12. The temperature is low but the spirits are high from the fans #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  13. With 10 minutes left in the game it’s still tied 1-1 #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  14. And this game is headed to overtime! Tied 1-1 after regulation #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  15. First overtime is over and game is still tied up at 1 #smcvtsoccer #mjd219
  16. Under 2 minutes into second overtime Pace puts one in the goal, win the game 2-1. Good fighting knights! #smcvtsoccer #mjd219

Overall, the Knights lost the game 2-1 to Pace, but the game was well played. It was very cold and raining,  but the fans stayed the entire game, never giving up hope. Throughout the stands, you could always hear cheering for Saint Mike’s, and there were obvious objections to calls against Saint Mike’s. My hands were numb by the end of the game, and I had all that I could do to Tweet throughout most of the game. It was hard keeping up with what was going on constantly, because I would go to Tweet something and something else exciting would happen so I would have to go and Tweet another thing immediately after. In the end, though, I can definitely say that it was fun.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, I hope you enjoyed it.

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Bring Back the Crowdsourcing!

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In our MJD219 class recently, we were taught ways of marketing a news post on social media networks. We were given some techniques to use, such as using a picture, a question, a fact, and a link to the actual post itself. We practiced this in class in our Facebook group, but then for homework it was our turn to do it all on our own.

We were given the objective to use these techniques to post on Facebook about our crowdsourcing projects that we had done and to try to get responses. I thought long and hard about what I would do for this, and I finally came to my conclusion. I posted a mini screenshot of the blog post, and also posted the link. I then accompanied these with the following:

Many different news organizations use crowdsourcing (using different types of media to get in touch with people by generating responses) on their social media sites to listen to what their audiences have to say. In my Social Media class, we too have used crowdsourcing to gather responses, as I did especially with my project regarding the Westgate Bombings at the beginning of the month.

Do you think that crowdsourcing is a good way to gather the input of the general public, and do you think that this is essentially a form of interviewing?

I then also used Twitter to promote this by tweeting on Twitter:

Crowdsourcing is an important part of using social media in the news, but can it be an interview? #mjd219 and included a link to the post.

I received only one response, from my father, who said that he would like to see the demographics of social media, because he thinks using crowdsourcing you can get a lot of input from an audience, but he thinks that people his age and older are less likely to have input because they do not have social media always. I messaged my father in Facebook Chat and sent him an infographic of the demographics, and he said he was right and that he said if you are crowdsourcing and want information from everyone, you are going to be lacking in the older age groups, which he is right about, but I feel like more and more people his age are making social media accounts now.

My Facebook post can be read here

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#MJD219

#MJD219

Tweets from students in MJD219 who were live tweeting events

Recently in MJD219 we were asked to use Storify, a website that takes posts on social media websites and creates a story using them, to take posts that are about MJD219 and do the same. Because many people have already started doing their live tweeting projects (the game I will be live tweeting does not start until November 2nd), I decided to use some of these tweets. Below, you can find the Storify version of some of the tweets that students have used for their live tweeting.

  1. Senior day at Duffy Field as SMC Mens Soccer recognizes four seniors from the class of 2014 #mjd219 #smcmenssoccer t.co/PrsrylVF8q
  2. Game. Set. Match. Adelphi wins set four 25-21, beat #smcvb 3-1 #mjd219
  3. #23 for the knights receives a yellow card with ten minutes left in the game #mjd219
  4. Saint Mike’s loses 1-0 as time expires despite a valiant effort in chilly, windy and wet conditions #mjd219 #smcmenssoccer
  5. Pedroia and Ortiz with back to back doubles. Pedroia to score. 1-0 Sox! #mjd219
  6. SOX WITH THE WIN. Back to Boston… Let’s take the series in 6 gents. #mjd219 #RedSox #FearTheBeard

Thank you for taking the time to read this post, I hope you enjoyed it.

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Princess Diana “Live Tweeting”

Recently in our MJD219 class, we were asked to watch a short segment of the speech given by Princess Diana’s brother at her funeral. We were told to “live tweet” during this, although we were allowed to tweet in a word document so that we did not annoy all of our twitter followers with something that happened many years ago. 

We watched the entire speech once and just took notes on it, and then we were told to turn those notes into tweets, but to make sure that they were no longer than 140 characters each, which is the model for tweets on Twitter.

For our homework assignment, we were told to use Storify to make a story of our tweets. Not wanting to end up accidentally posting them to my Twitter account, I just made an account and did not connect it to any of my actual accounts. You can read the tweets that I took here.

I really enjoyed this exercise in class. It really showed us how difficult it can be to live tweet sometimes. You may not get all of the information that you want because things in life don’t happen at the pace that you want them to. You have to try and get as much detail as you can, all the while accepting the fact that you are probably going to miss some stuff, so you have to choose what is important and what is not important, and I know for a fact it is something that I will have to work on.

 

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed what I had to say. 

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Interviews and Such

In our last MJD219 class, we were asked to go to the new Dion Family Student Center at Saint Mike’s and find people in the building, and ask them for their opinion of what they think of the new building. I thought that this was going to be a little strange, mostly because I had never REALLY interviewed anyone before. Luckily for me, however, two of my friends walked into the building, allowing me to interview them rather than walking up to someone random who was either studying or enjoying their lunch.

Based on the idea from this class assignment, we had a similar assignment for homework. However, there was no topic given to us about what we had to interview people about; we had to come up with a topic ourselves. I knew that this would be easy for me, because I have a true passion that I take part in at SMC, and that is firefighting. When we got back from training on Wednesday night, I asked a few fellow firefighters if they would mind me asking them a few questions. I chose my friend Dennis Miller, a member of the class of 2016, and my twin brother, Tim, also a member of the class of 2016.

Dennis was not quite comfortable with me asking him questions that I was recording on video, so instead, I used his picture and asked him why he joined the fire department at SMC. His response can be seen here, as well as a picture of Dennis in the tweet. Knowing that my brother would be comfortable with me interviewing him, I decided to ask him a few questions, which can be seen here. Basically, I wanted to see what people who I interact with every day think about the job that we volunteer to do. We give up many hours a week to volunteer in the community, when we could be hanging out with friends or doing many other things. I know that for me, it has been one of the greatest experiences that I have ever had, and do not know where I would be without it. I am glad to see that other people agree with me on that.

 

Thank you for reading this, I hope you enjoyed what I wrote.

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Visit the Saint Michael’s Fire and Rescue website


Tumblr

In MJD219 recently, we were introduced to Timblr (some people in the class had already used Tumblr before). If you are unfamiliar with it, Tumblr is a blogging website where people can post picture or regular blog posts, and people can like your posts or even repost them. I have never really personally used Tumblr (when I was younger, I made one that I posted a few times on, but had never really understood it). I do, however, follow a few Tumblr-based accounts on Twitter, but these accounts are followed by me purely because they post funny pictures from Tumblr. (These two accounts are @TumblrsFunnies and @TumblrEdits).

Our assignment relating to Tumblr was for us to find one new organization and one brand that use Tumblr, and describe how they use it. The news organization that I found using Tumblr was the New York Times. Their Tumblr account can be found here. When you first go to their page, you see many big pictures posted with a little caption under the bottom telling you what is going on in the picture, or it will be a question relating to something that they have posted. An example of this is this post about Justin Timberlake. Under the picture that leads to the post is the question

Is Justin Timberlake the emcee of his generation?

The question really draws the person who is looking at the page toward the article, in that they want to read what is being said about him. They use hook sentences to draw the people towards the articles that are posted behind the initial picture.

The brand that I chose to talk about is the Ben and Jerry’s Tumblr account found here. I like the layout of this Tumblr in that there are many pictures that you can see when you first open this blog. There are pictures that rotate through many pictures, there are pictures specifically showing different types of ice cream that the company produces. When you scroll down, more pictures appear, and you can see the pictures that other people have posted with them enjoying the ice cream, such as this post of people at Bonnaroo this past year. They frequently show pictures of people who are happy eating their products, so it leads people to the conclusion that if they eat Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream, they will be happy.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read this, I hope you enjoyed it.

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