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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Please Practice Good Digital Citizenship

I talked about this briefly on my Anchor podcast yesterday, but I need to elaborate a bit here. During the last year I have increasingly seen teachers sharing and or reacting to posts on social media without actually reading the full article. For example, see the screenshots below in which teachers have shared Facebook posts without actually reading the article or trying the tools mentioned in the article. How do I know they haven't? They say to the friends they've tagged, "I haven't read this, but I thought of you." See a few examples below (click the images to view them in full size).
What's funny about showing a video to your students that you haven't watched?





I don't know about you, but I don't want people making recommendations to me if they haven't actually tried the product or read the article.

I'm also concerned about this pattern because if a teacher is using this bad practice in his/ her social media accounts, what is he/she teaching to students about digital citizenship? In an era in which we are increasingly hearing about viral fake news stories, it's important to make sure we're not the ones contributing to the problem.

A similar problem reared its ugly head on Sunday on the Free Technology for Teachers Facebook page. I posted this article about gaining access to sites your school filters. Roughly half of the comments on the post were from people who clearly didn't read the article at all. In other words, they were responding to the headline. After 24 hours I took the post down because I was tired of moderating uninformed comments and spats between those commenting.

Please, use social media to share things that you think are helpful to your friends and colleagues. Just read before you share. Your colleagues, friends, and students will thank you.