Another bloggy blog blog

March 12, 2009 at 9:56 pm (Technology in the classroom) (, )

Social networking is a tough thing for me to stomach. Although I am an avid user of it and have been for several years, there is a time and place for it. What I mean by this is that social networking, is not, and I repeat, NOT for everybody, and to think it is totally unrealistic. Okay, maybe that sounds harsh.  Social networking is for people…hmmmm…how can I put this delicately, that are mature enough to limit and control the content used and observed. I don’t think that this can be monitored by age, because I think there are FAR too many twenty something’s that use social networking in a negative and harmful way. But it is the way nature runs its course, that, as you get older, you often mature.

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After having read Danah Boyd’s article about social networking and youth, I thought about what she had to say about the public’s view of this recent phenomenon and how this affects youth and our society. Not matter what article I read and how many lectures I attend, I do not buy the whole social networking thing for kids. Now don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of using technology to teach and having the children use technology to learn. I think it is mega valuable in our education system. I am also no dinosaur, in fact, I might be seen as a total hipster, however I have a real hard time seeing the value in having 12 year olds on facebook. Now I’ve always been a bit old school about certain things, but I think that kids, sometimes just have to be kids. And social networking is not a way to be a kid. I think using these sites and outlets are an interesting way to share yourself with other people, and to learn about these same friends. I think the fact that you can choose what people see is a feature that was meant to be used by mature individuals, not some hormone-crazed 13 year old.

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Do you remember being 13 and not being allowed to watch PG16 movie? I remember it not making much sense to me back then. What difference does it make, I thought? I could probably just rent it when it came out if I reaaaaallly wanted to watch it. The fact is that, most of the time I did not wanna watch it once it came out. In other words, that stupid PG16 worked. I remember being 16 and desperately wanting my eyebrow pierced cause I was cool like that, but I needed my parent’s signature and I knew I would never get it. I could have easily forged it, but instead I decided I would 2 years and guess what? I never got a piercing. Partly because I am now deathly paranoid about piercing shops, but also because they discouraged me to do something potentially stupid when I was at my most influenceable and vulnerable age. I feel that social networking sites should do the same. Force kids to get their parents consent. The fittest will find a way to do it, but I think many will decide it’s not worth the effort and will grab a soccer ball and go play outside. 

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