MSVU Social Media Course Blog

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SNSs- the ideal versus the reality

 The assigned reading “Social Network Sites: Definition, History, and Scholarship” written by D. Boyd and N. Ellison provided a comprehensive overview for those of us new to the SNS scene. I was particularly captivated by the research and analysis presented on the cultures that emerge within these sites. For example, under the subheading “SNSs Hit the Mainstream” the authors provide an insightful background on the birth and growth of MySpace, detailing how the SNS was able to expand its ‘social capital’ by way of Friendster’s “alienation of its early adopters.”  The article names indie-rock bands as one particular group that converted to MySpace and prompted other SNS users to adopt the site in spite of Friendster’s homogenous and strict profile regulations.  This is a perfect example of how sub-cultures are formed and how the required or intended system can sometimes result in an emergent or rebellious system, different from what was initially intended.  MySpace did not seek out indie-rockers or bands specifically, but because the SNS offered a more flexible regulations it was able to create a virtual haven for ambitious musicians, groupies, promoters and industry associates to converse and exchange ideas and dialogue.  Viewing SNS through the cultural lense allows for interesting discoveries about humans as a collective cohort. I look forward to learning more.


Until next time,


May 15, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The new “EduBook” sells message of reform

Papyrus …on digital learning and literacy had a very interesting post dated May 7, 2009 and titled “Fascinating New “EduBook”. It features the launch of Gecko EduBook netbook by NorhTec Corpoation, a computer and computer server manufacturer, who’s vision is to “create devices that take advantage of new operating system features and new form factor options.”  The post, written by Mark Warschauer, a professor of Informatics at the University of California, describes the new EduBook as having many direct benefits to the field of information and communication technologies in schools and communities, as well as a potentially positive influence upon social development and language and literacy levels in the United States schools especially. These hopes stem from the fact that the new EduBook runs on plain old  AA batteries instead of the more pricey lithium ones. The post states that since the power supply is internal, only a cheap $2 power cord is needed as an adaptor. What’s more and probably most impressive is that the unit is expected to sell for $150 to $200, a significant difference in comparison to the cool $2,000 I spent for my MacBook.


Warschauer predicts that in the next few years, a range of similar netbooks will be available to public schools allowing much easier integration of computers than what’s currently experienced today. This is encouraging news for low income parents unable to provide their children with the new technologies needed in order to exchange with their peers in today’s society. It is also positive for developing countries, as they too may now be able to expand their education around information and communications technologies in a global age. Overall, I found the post enlightening as it shows the astronomical change in the history of the computer, drastically different from the early computers seen in the in-class video that showed programming controlled by patch cables and switches in outside rooms. Finally!  A more economical option that is available to the working poor and offers benefits to society as a whole.


Way to go NorhTec!  Keep it up!

May 15, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

All About Video

I love video sites. I can spend hours on YouTube linking from video to video, enjoying everything from movie previews to instructional cooking blurbs. Needless to say, I was quite happy to learn that I would be reviewing online video tools as a form of social media. I explored the following five video sites:

 1. YouTubeYouTube

YouTube is, as far as I’m concerned, the holy grail of online video. Their slogan, “Broadcast Yourself” has spawned a whole new generation of video bloggers, actors and musicians looking to share their opinions and talents with the world. Many YouTubers have gained marginal celebrity status through broadcasting themselves. Aspiring comedic actress Lisa Donovan (LisaNova) became an online sensation through airing her satirist routines on the site. Folk singer Marie Digby (mariedigby) made a name for herself when she posted a video of her acoustic rendition of Rhihanna’s Umbrella. The site has opened up a world of possibilities to rising stars and attention-seekers alike. We no longer need millions of dollars and traditional media tools to get our voices “out there”. All that’s required is a camera and a computer.

 2. VimeoVimeo

Vimeo, unlike YouTube is dedicated solely to home-made videos. The site regards amateur video-making as a form of art, and allows users to post and share their masterpieces within a community of like-minded artists. Some entries explore photo composition techniques (check out 5D Macro II) while others feature complex animation and editing (check out Secta Chameleon.) Fellow artists can comment on one another’s entries and offer critiques and advice. The site is all about creativity and freedom of expression. Event the design and layout give the site an overall artsy look and feel.

 3. DailyMotionDailyMotion

Based in Paris, France, DailyMotion is quite similar to YouTube. The site features user-uploaded videos in a variety of categories including News, Funny, Science and even Sexy. In the sexy category, we can sense the liberal European influence, in contrast to the more subdued content on YouTube. Users can browse through thousands of swimsuit (check out Sports Illustrated’s Bar Rafaelli) models and even some explicit content. My how times have changed.

 4. ViddlerViddler

Viddler is another YouTube-esque video sharing site. (Pardon me if I’m a bit biased in using YouTube as my chief point of reference.) One viddler feature that struck me as interesting was the B2B or Viddler Business Services corner of the website. This section caters specifically to corporate users looking to employ new online video media to enhance their business endeavours. The section features a frequently updated Customer Spotlight where businesses are profiled and promoted. The B2B section, of course is not a free tool. Businesses must pay for the B2B services which include high-quality video hosting, security measures and in-stream ads.

 5. features a variety of user-created content in a series of what seem to be online TV programs. Users publish “episodes” of their homemade “shows” that are made accessible to the online world. Just like TV at home, viewers can choose from drama, comedy, sitcom and even reality-based shows. (Check out episode 17 of Temp Life.) Even the financial side of things works a lot like TV. The site offers an advertising program where users share 50% of revenue, as determined by show viewership. Talk about making the internet work for you!

May 15, 2009 Posted by | Comment on Course Material, Really Relevant Interesting Stuff | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Let’s Talk – PR Conversations

PR Conversations

PR Conversations

For this first entry, as many of you did, I’m going to give a basic overview of the blog I was assigned and some of the interesting posts you may want to check out.

PR Conversations considers itself to be a global environment for PR related debate. There are 10 authors from all corners of the globe who present their opinions on various topics, issues, ask for help etc.

One of the more recent posts is by a practitioner from Italy who is looking for feedback and suggestions on a chapter he’s written on Global PR. His chapter will appear in the second addition of a Reputation Management book being released in 2010. Feel free to check it out and maybe we call all discuss some ideas that we can pass along to him.

There is also a special feature up right now called “ What is PR?” which helps to explain the breadth of the field and how there are so many different answers to that question. I know every time there’s a family function someone asks that question, so this may be an interesting read…minus the fact that it’s 60-plus pages!

I’m looking forward to delving into this blog further and hopefully building up the courage to make an educated comment!

Over and out.


May 15, 2009 Posted by | Review of Monitored Site | Leave a comment

Want to leave a message on your computer while on the road?

As discussed in class there are many different social media tools, today I am going to discussed SMS /Voice social media tools. SMS, which stands for Short Message Service, is the most widely used data application in the world. Most commonly known as text-messages, most SMS are done from mobile to mobile. Examples of SMS are Jott and Kwiry.

For a fee of $9.95 a month, Jott is a service that will transcribe your voicemail messages. As a subscriber you can choose to receive your voicemail via text or email. This makes it easier for you to respond, forward and store your voicemail. Also, a simple phone call can capture notes, messages, appointments, etc. The third option Jott has is to allow salesperson to update their accounts from a phone call. In simple terms, Jott is a virtual outlook. This service is used by business professionals who do not always haves access to their computer. Facilitating on the road business, professionals do not have to worry about loosing an important message. If you are interested in learning more about Jott go to the following link .

Kwiry was a SMS service that allows users to text their computers before they forgot it. However as of April 23, this service was discontinued

May 15, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment