So ladies and gentlemen, we’re at the end of our blog posting for our class and we are reflecting on our first voice thread. In our first voice thread we were asked what we thought about digital citizenship, and my response was that I believed it was a gateway of opportunities, a whole new world for this upcoming generation to explore. In my eyes this came along with pros and cons. Being able to keep in touch with family while being in different parts of the city, state, country, even the world was the biggest advantage to my belief at the time. How awesome is it to be able to log onto an app and be able to see pictures of a newborn family member miles away that you weren’t able to just drive down the street to see? So I’m sure many people agree with that aspect keeping in contact with family members. The biggest disadvantage I found was that so many people are getting caught up in a digital world because all of these people are being sucked into their phones and social media sites that they were missing out on so many things that this beautiful world we have has to offer. How many of you can think of a time when a person has been so engaged on their phone that they ran into a pole? Think about it this way, what if in a split second the most beautiful sunset occurs and you aren’t able to catch it because you were looking through Instagram or Facebook, now I’m sure that happens way to often in our society. After taking this class my eyes have been opened to so many aspects that I never thought of before. Thinking about digital citizenship now as opposed to then, I can say that I view digital citizenship in a completely different way. Digital citizenship to me has become a way to promote oneself via social media and generally on the Internet. I kind of think about it like this; it is a reputation and representation of yourself, kind of like a resume, and things such as those should be taken care of. A person always wants their best qualities to shine when it really comes down to it and using ones digital citizenship wisely that person can do so very efficiently. There are so many aspects that come into play about how your digital citizenship can be affected but I think the biggest one that stuck out to me when learning about digital citizenship was participatory culture. The easiest way for me to put this, is that things you do online will always find a way to catch up to you, so think twice about how you would liked to be viewed without being able to explain anything. Only post things you would be proud to have your name come up with, such as organizations you have been involved with or volunteer work you have done. Keep the private things private and make the public ones things that you are proud of.
This week we were asked to read an article and watch a video, which both were about how to have/create an effective digital citizenship, and then we were instructed to compare the two and find some similarities. I found both sources to be really helpful and insightful on what it means to be a good digital citizen and what it takes to get there. A common point that I took from these was that students need to be more informed about the input they have on the world. It is being brought up more in higher education on how to use our sources to make a difference, but both state that even younger children who are growing up with all these technological changes should be introduced to these things. All students have the ability to write papers and learn basics, we need to keep this, but also expand it with the world that is growing. Another thing that I took away from these was that we need to have conversations. Like I said, anyone can write a paper and turn it in, and it could be an amazing paper, but what happens to those thoughts when they aren’t shared with the world? We need to have conversations. These conversations do not necessarily have to be filled with the most sophisticated level of intelligence and facts, but it should be impactful with thoughts outside the box. When we share and collaborate thoughts it can only make us more versatile, this is what we need. The students of today and the future can make the difference. We are the difference. We need to be educated on how to get our thoughts out there so we can be the little bird who shows everyone that with one thought and some action, we can make the changes that we world needs.
Hey there! So this is our third and final week of engaging, which technically I believe the engaging shouldn’t stop here but as for the layout of our assignments it does. From week one until now I have expressed how apprehensive I have been to put myself out there, it has been something that I have been working on though and this week I think it finally paid off. Starting conversations or even asking questions as I have previously stated is always something that makes me so nervous, but I finally built up the courage to tag people personally on Twitter and ask questions. This has been one of my biggest goals because after the past two weeks of doing so, I have felt that just re-tweeting wasn’t getting me exactly what I wanted. I did gain a lot of information about the refugee crisis and it made me want to be a part of it even more, but this week has kind of changed the tables for me. So like I said I built up the courage to directly contact people who are actually out there helping out and posting about it, although I did it kind of late from when I had to write this blog post, I did get a response and it made me so happy! I was so excited that someone actually took the time to respond to me. I found a woman by the name of Sofia Khan who is volunteering her help to the refugees in Calais where she says the distribution of helpful aid is good via warehouse, but she did state that there are other places where supplies needed are more acute. She has been so willing to give information on her behalf and what she is experiencing that has taught me a few things that I didn’t know about the crisis. She also referred me to a Facebook page, which I haven’t gotten the chance to check out but I am excited to see what that is all about. Sofia helped me so much this week, not only was it a great experience getting a response but from someone who seems so friendly and willing to share information was great! I am looking forward to seeing what I can do to help and this definitely will not be my last week of engaging. HERE is a direct link to my Twitter account (tweets and replies section of my page) in case any of you would like to see the conversation between Sofia and I.
This is another week of engaging with our social topics. Last week I had a lot of interpersonal issues, this week I decided to try to just let those go and re-tweet more things that I saw which grabbed my attention. Most articles, pictures, or posts in general that I clicked on regarding my topic are things that I re-tweeted. This is a big step for me because like I stated before, it takes a lot of me to feel comfortable, but I’m just trying to go for it. Last week I left a comment on an Instagram page, which didn’t get a response, but I knew it was a fifty-fifty chance. I tried to engage more this week by re-tweeted more, a lot more than I expected from myself. One of the quotes that I re-tweeted was from the United Nations Human Rights Twitter page which read, “ #RefugeeCrisis: Migration doesn’t threaten any culture. Every society on this planet was fashioned by women & men who came from elsewhere.” This really spoke to me because I feel like it has so much truth to it, humans are treating other humans as if their lives have no meaning and this is so sad. Reading and seeing all of the news on the refugee crisis makes me question the world and what we can do to help. I see so many organizations and random people dropping everything to help, and this gives me hope that the world will get the bigger picture. This will have been done by participatory culture of the Internet getting people together and making that change. Although I have not gotten any responses from anyone, I see a step in the right direction regarding my engaging process. I do not feel as apprehensive to post things that I feel are important for others to know about. My plan for next week is to continue to re-tweet, adding some comments on these links and even trying to spark a conversation by tagging someone directly or even just acknowledging someone for the things they are doing for the refugees. I’m hoping maybe one of those techniques will allow me to grow and develop more with my topic and being more active online. Although it has taken me some baby steps to get to this point, I can only myself getting better from here.
This week our challenge is to engage. Since we have been researching our topics and finding sources, now we must “make moves.” It took me awhile to figure out how I wanted to do this, I was really unsure about what I wanted to say or where I wanted to go with engaging. Being a shy person made this that much harder for me, but I knew it had to be done. The approach I took on for this weeks challenge was simply acknowledging the woman’s blog post that I came across last week. Not only do I think what she did was completely incredible, but sharing it with the world is such a brilliant idea. So many people here about this stuff on the news or elsewhere, yet fail to try to put themselves in those peoples shoes and that’s exactly what she did. Reading and hearing things from someone who has experienced first hand makes my connection to my topic much deeper than just reading articles on the web. I posted a comment where I originally discovered this blog post, which was on Instagram, recognizing her for her work and letting her know why I am engaging in this topic. I look forward to growing with this engaging process and not letting my shyness interfere by making an account for the blogging website this woman used, and also creating a Twitter, both of coarse to improve myself and create a digital footprint that will eventually make a difference. Let’s see what next week brings!
This week we have continued to lurk on our social media sights. For those of you who didn’t read my last post, lurking consists of silently following a certain sight and watching what they are doing without commenting on anything or making your presence known. As I stated before I felt kind of weird doing this when I first started because I felt like a creeper, but once I got used to it I was able to understand the positive effects of it. Last week I was shocked to see the wide variety of positive and negative views on my topic of the refugee crisis, but as I’ve lurked more and more I have opened my eyes to both sides of this topic. I saw people becoming more involved with my topic by lurking more and this week I have examples of both from the sites I have been lurking on, which are YouTube and Instagram. On YouTube I came across this video on the five things media wont report about the refugee crisis. This video made me think, so here’s the link in case any of you would like to check it out. (http://youtu.be/UklocH91j0w) On Instagram, I came across a page of a woman who decided to actually put herself through the refugee crisis and write a blog about it. I really liked this because she could have easily just tried to go and fins some stuff out about the crisis and report it. Instead, she experienced it and is now writing from first hand experiences. She also takes questions on her blog post and posts lots of pictures from her experience so I am definitely going to continue following her blogs to learn more. Here is her blog in case any of you would like to as well. (https://medium.com/@I.am.a.refugee) I still believe that we should be taking these refugees in; although there is conflict I believe we need to help one another. I found a picture that really spoke to me and made me realize that we need to make a difference. I am attaching the photo so you all can see it, and I want you to remember the first thought you have when you read it.
This week we are lurking. Lurking basically means we are keeping tabs on social media sites in order to gain information. As previously stated, my topic is the current refugee crisis. The two social media sites that I decided to lurk on are YouTube and Instagram. The reason I chose these two sites is because they involve picture and video along with likes and comments. I believe that an image can make a huge impact on the way someone views a certain topic without words having to be said. Like they say, “A picture is worth a thousand words.”
Lurking involves me constantly looking up my topic of the refugee crisis on the social media sights and looking at anything new that is posted. I have been lurking first thing in the morning, at my lunch break, after work, and before bed. What is extremely interesting to me is that there is always something new that has come up and that I can look into. When I first began lurking, I honestly felt very weird. I felt like I was spying on people and I didn’t like it, but when I started to think about it deeper, I realized that these people are doing what we are working towards. They are using social media in order to get their thoughts and beliefs out into the world. Once I was able to grasp that concept, I didn’t feel like a creeper anymore.
YouTube has brought many videos to my attentions that are working towards getting people motivated to help the cause. Instagram on the other had is a lot more of people sharing their perspectives on what they feel about the refugee crisis. There is always people posting to help spread the word, or trying to make a difference but when others’ opinions are involved we can always expect some sort of head bumping to be involved. This was something I wasn’t expecting but I can see how some people would feel another way, I personally just feel as if we should be helping out. I saw more of the head bumping on Instagram, but either way, the majority of people that came across this situation feel for these people and want to help.
“What is the point of being alive, if you don’t at least try to do something remarkable?” – John Green
This week we were asked to search social media for insight on our topic. The refugee crisis is such a fresh topic that I was unsure if people even knew about it, but I was surprised that I was able to connect a previous article to an event on Facebook. The University in England that I mentioned in my last post has a page for the march they are going to put on for the refugees and to raise awareness. All of the pictures and posts that they have on their page brought tears to my eyes because they are making the change. 2.2 million people were invited to this even and as of now 503 people are planning to attend. Although I wish that number were bigger I am happy that some people realized the severity of this tragedy. When I searched the hash tag #refgueecrisis on Instagram, I was in awe. I found a picture that broke my heart. On a coastline there were hundreds of lifejackets washed up on the shore along with floating tubes. This made me think about how many people didn’t make it to a safer place and had to suffer such a tragic death. We are in the year 2015 people, this should not be happening. Everyone deserves a fare chance at life. After seeing this picture and seeing that people on the other side of the world are making a difference just makes me realize that we need to do the same.
This week we were asked to search for more articles on our topic of the refugee crisis, except we were given specific directions to search websites that are known for more credible resources. Searching the database from the library took me on a whole different path than searching the web. I came across many articles from students and journalists, and there were so many more newspaper articles from all over the world. Reading these different articles made me realize that many people are becoming more aware about the refugee crisis and some of them are actually taking action. This particular article stressed the importance about how important it is to take action and help these people who are living a nightmare. (http://infoweb.newsbank.com.summit.csuci.edu:2048/resources/doc/nb/news/1584A8EA6E3BF000?p=AWNB ) It brings up how this crisis became such a big deal to the rest of the world, which I have mentioned in m previous posts. The three-year-old Syrian boy whose body washed up face down on the shore of Turkey made the whole world upset about this situation and wanting to take action. One of my biggest questions is “Why did it have to get so bad before anyone started helping?” This led me to searching through many more articles; then I stumbled upon one that was more about information, but information that made me a very happy camper. In England there is a group of university students who have created a committee that is having a march on October 16th at 7:00 PM in order to raise awareness and bring out the humanity in people around the world to want to make a difference. This inspired me to be a part of something like this in order to make the world realize that we need to be the change we want to see in the world.
I chose to research the global issue of the refugee crisis. The thing that got me initially intrigued about this topic was the sadness I felt when I saw the picture of the three year old Syrian boy whose body washed up on shore in Turkey after her had drowned trying to flee the country of Syria with his family. The only person who survived in that family was the father who no longer wanted to live after reaching shore because he stated he had nothing to live for anymore. This broke my heart. I could not fathom the fact that people were denying to help other out in the world. Everyone on the face of the earth is a human being, how can we be so cruel to our own kind? Researching this topic and fining articles with so many different views opened my mind to the political side of it, but I still don’t completely agree with letting people suffer and die. I tried the different search engines to read articles and some seemed more reliable than others. Reading about the crap detection helped me weed out those articles that would not have been as helpful. Now that I can use these tools to help me get the right articles I can help inform others about this issue of the world the right way, with the right information.