Getting to know my peers through… cybersleuthing ?!

In our Education Technology lecture this past week we learnt all about Digital Identity and the trace we can leave on the internet. We were assigned an interesting task this week – to get to know our classmates through a cybersleuth… can’t say I have every had an assignment like this before!

Follow me along my cybersleuth!

I got to know my partner, Jorden Robitaille in a very non-traditional way… but I am thinking this is not out the norm for the world we live in now. I follow and interact with Jorden on twitter so had already known from her bio that she is busy being a mom and student, which is incredible! I have really enjoyed being able to connect and follow along with her dancing journey as she teaches herself and her son to do some cool moves through online learning!

Taking my “creep” to the next level I turned to Google where I found Jorden’s blog (check it out by the way, click here!). From Jorden’s blog I learnt that she lives small town Sask now but was actually born in Quebec and moved here quite awhile ago – cool! On her blog you are able to follow along with her educational journey, she has created a strong professional presence online. Moving onwards with my deep dive into Jordan’s online persona, I learned she is not the only Jorde(a)n Robitaille out there… just a little bit different spellings! She even shares a name with a Canadian Idol contestant… if anyone remembers Canadian Idol lol.

To sum up my search, I didn’t find much personal information about Jorden online but I did get a good idea of what kind of person she is just from her professional pages.

Let’s talk about Digital Identity!

It is a scary thought that you can have this entire online persona and it is even scarier to know you might not be able to control how you are perceived through the internet. Madison Holler’s story on ESPN  really spoke to me and had me wondering about how people might perceive me through my posts on social media and If how I am perceiving my friends is really how they are doing.

So often I think to myself – “Wow. I haven’t talked to “so and so” forever, I should check in but I know they have been busy since they were posting on Instagram.”. Reading about Madison and how she was struggling yet living a different life via social media breaks my heart. We see other peoples best 10% of their lives online and make the assumption we are seeing their whole life and that it is wonderful, but we shouldn’t.

As per the screenshot from the story about Madison – we feel this pressure from social media that we aren’t doing enough or that

Snippet from Split Image

we simply aren’t enough because we only see people’s highlights. This then causes us to create a digital identity that does not accurately represent our actual identity – and unfortunately, it seems like a vicious cycle.

Digital Identity in my classroom!

I want to be transparent with my students in explaining the “Split Image” a digital identity can often cause and that things are never just as they seem. We post what we are proud of and what we want people to see, I understand that and I know that might not change. What I want to do is allow my students to build their toolkit to also understand that so that hopefully they don’t feel this pressure at some point in their lives.

One thought on “Getting to know my peers through… cybersleuthing ?!

  1. Hi Allison,

    Doing cybersleuth was for me the funnest part of this course. Although you were able to have a good idea on Jorden professional pages, it is still challenging to know more about her personal information. In my case for instance, I found this activity complicated in the sense that my classmate was many people with the same name not only in Canada, but also abroad. Thank you for sharing and have a wonderful Christmas per anticipation.  

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