EDTC 300

My Thoughts On Twitter and Social Media

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Over the years I have slowly weaned myself almost entirely off of social media.  I deleted my Twitter and Instagram over 3 years ago, and I deleted my Facebook just a few short months ago.  I do see the benefits of social media.  In this class, we are using social media as a tool to build our personal learning networks and engage with other professionals in the field of education, and that is great.  But after this class, I am undecided if I am going to continue using Twitter and I definitely won’t be reinstalling my Facebook and Instagram and jumping onto platforms like Tik Tok.  

The major reason why I deleted these programs is the issue of privacy.  I think privacy is going to be one of the biggest topics and issues in the coming generations.  You might find this surprising, but one of the most valuable commodities today is your online data. Companies like Facebook, Twitter, Tik Tok, etc. are free because the users are the product.  Something that many people are unaware of is that Apple recently updated their Appstore terms and conditions to make it so companies are required to disclose what information they collect on you when you download their app to your phone. I encourage everyone to explore this.  You can do this by searching Facebook or Twitter, for example, on the Appstore, click the app and then scroll down until you see App Privacy.  Click the See Details button and there you can scroll through all the data the app collects.  I highly recommend watching “The Social Dilemma” on Netflix if you haven’t seen it.  It discusses the issues I lightly touched on in a lot more detail. 

The second major reason as to why I deleted most of my social media is the spread of disinformation and hate groups.  “Fake news and false rumors reach more people, penetrate deeper into the social network, and spread much faster than accurate stories.” It seems like instead of moving forward as a society, we are moving backwards.  Polarization of people is a huge issue right now, and I blame that largely on social media and the spread of disinformation through these platforms. A study by Forbes recently found that “Facebook Allows and Recommends White Supremacist, Anti-Semitic And QAnon Groups with Thousands Of Members.” These types of issues need to be addressed before I consider social media a net gain on society instead of a net negative.

Having said all of this, I do think there are some benefits to social media and EDTC300 is largely highlighting these benefits.  Things like #saskedchat are made possible because of social media and that deserves to be recognized. As far as using Twitter and social media in my classroom, I think most of my instruction would revolve around social media literacy and recognizing how to distinguish between real and fake information.


  • Ian Mansfield

    Hi Branden! Very good post, I have had similar concerns with the issue of privacy with social media apps. I try to mitigate this by only visiting the websites on the internet and not installing the apps on my phone, but it’s not perfect. I have also been put off by the propagation of disinformation via these platforms and have pulled back significantly in terms of my social media involvement. So far Twitter has been good since I have been very diligent about only following things related to my education. No news outlets, no celebrities, only education stuff. Have a good one!

  • bsa898

    Hey Ian,

    Those are both really good ideas. I too try just to use these apps on desktop instead of installing them onto my phone. You are also right when you say that you can eliminate the propagation of disinformation by only following certain accounts, and that is probably how I will approach using Twitter throughout the semester as well.

  • Sarah Wright

    Hi Branden,
    I understand your ideas about privacy and I think you bring forward good points.

    I did watch this video that says that the bigger your online footprint the easier it is for people to try to help find you if you every go missing. Something to think about because yes they are able to find important details about you but they can find those detail if you are missing or not.
    If you want to watch it (it won’t let me hyperlink in the comments)

    Something to think about- how will you try to collaborate/ trade ideas with other teachers without social media? I think that “teacher” social media pages can become overly negative about lack of resources or budget cuts so it would be interesting how you would be in contact with others.

    Sarah EDTC 400

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