CMC 375
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Community Building

This post shows an example of community building. By clicking on the link above and signing into Facebook you will be able to see a Facebook group, Friends of Albany Crew, showing community. The Ellison, Steinfeld, and Lampe article state that Facebook is an excellent way to maintain social capital and connections to a specific community. The community that I am involved in the Albany Crew community made up of past and current rowers that can all share experiences and information through this Facebook group. 

Greater social capital increases commitment to a community and that's what this Facebook group does for us. The more chances that there are for rowers to communicate with each other the more they will feel like they have become a part of that group. Alumni can post old photos or news articles for others to see and current athletes can post race information and current team pictures for the Alumni. It definitely gives a positive reaction to participants in this group. The community of rowers on Facebook is unique from the communities of other student groups or teams on Facebook. There are distinct characteristics that seperate us from others like the photos and dialogue that we use in the group. 

Building a sense of community is important for a large group and Facebook, and other forms of CMC, are great tools to support this. New forms of social capital build when group members interact. Relationships are formed and community is felt between participants. With so many members it can be very difficult to develop ties between old and new rowers but sharing a sense of community between one another helps everyone involved. 

 

Ellison, N. B., Steinfield, C., & Lampe, C. (2007). The benefits of Facebook "friends:" Social capital and college students' use of online social network sites. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 12(4), article 1. http://jcmc.indiana.edu/vol12/issue4/ellison.html

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Modes of Communication

This blog post shows examples of three different modes of communication via social media according to the Kaplan and Haenlein article. The link on the title above shows a video of myself on Youtube, an example of one mode which is a content community. The main objective of this mode is the sharing of media content between users. Youtube is the perfect site for video sharing with others and anyone has access to the site. I was not required to create a profile so the ability to share content with others is very easy. This is a very effective form of CMC and can serve for almost any purpose.

This link shows a second mode of social media which is a blog:  http://greg-piduch.blogspot.com/. A blog is the "social media equivalent of personal web pages" and are usually only managed by one person compared to content communities where everyone can share. Blogs can share information, give direction, or even personal opinion. The blog I posted comments on a variety of topics that we discussed in class. Like content communities blogs can be used by everyone; from professionals to the average teenager. It is another to communicate with others through the computer.

A third mode of communication through social media is a social network shown here: http://twitter.com/#!/gregpiduch. Examples of social networks include Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, and many more. Users also share information on social networks but the prime idea is information sharing with others, usually by creating a personal profile unlike content communities. With blogs you do have the option to create a profile. The link above is my profile on twitter, a new and popular network used for sharing everything. All forms of computer-mediated communication can take place on twitter which is a reason why it is so popular. The article shares that social networks are more popular with the younger generation which is true although older adults have been starting to use them more. Twitter can be used professionally or for entertainment. 

All three of these links show different types of social media which are all separate modes of communication. Each mode has their positives and negatives and can be used for many different reasons. 

 

Kaplan, A. & Haenlein, M. (2010) Users of the world, unite! The challenges and
opportunities of Social Media. Business Horizons 53, 59-68. Available online library at Science Direct database.

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Twitter

This post shows an example of filtering/curating. Twitter is a very popular social media site that is used for news, business, leisure and many other purposes. An average of 155 million tweets are posted everyday on the site. With so many users it can be difficult to find what you are looking for when you to login to twitter. That is why hashtags are the perfect way to filter out what does not matter and take you straight to what you are looking for.

Hashtags are used on twitter to broadcast information to a specific group of people, as stated in a blog post by Darren Rowse. A hashtag looks like this: #. The hashtag that I used in my link is #occupywallstreet. When I type this into the search bar and enter it, a list will come up showing all tweets where this hashtag is used. This is very useful when searching for a specific topic, person, event, or anything else. There is even a website www.hashtags.org that "creates, organizes, and displays" hashtag groups. By filtering out all information irrelevant to occupy wall street I am able to look through all of the posts without having worry about searching for news and updates about the occupy wall street movement. Hashtags are also useful when trying to communicate to a specific group of people. If everyone in your groups uses the same hashtag you will be able to search on twitter for anything that your group has tweeted, just by entering your unique hashtag in the search box. 

Filtering/curating is helpful in any search. By limiting the items that you can search through the more likely it is that you will find a source or piece of information that is useful to you. With new technology and social media curating is becoming easier and easier to do. Twitter is an excellent example because it gives you direct access to every tweet that you are looking for just by filtering content with a hashtag. Filtering/curating content can make life with computer-mediated communication very simple. 

 

Gorman, T. (2011) Social Media Curation Tool Storyful Helps Separate News From Noise. Available at
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/2011/04/social-media-curation-tool-separates-news-from-noise.html

 

 

 http://www.twitip.com/tweet-your-message-to-a-larger-audience-with-hashtags/

 

 

 

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Greg Piduch | LinkedIn

This blog post is a good example of networking. A social network as defined by the Boyd-Ellison article is a web-based service that allows you to construct a public or semi-public profile, articulate a list of users with whom you share a connection, and view and traverse your list of connections and those made by others within the system. I chose LinkedIn as my networking tool because it follows all of these guidelines and building connections on this site is very important. LinkedIn is a professional social networking site used to help employers and employees search for jobs and job candidates. It has a particular set of features to help carry out this purpose.
Sharing your personal social network with others is very beneficial, especially when it is business related. On my LinkedIn account I have 20 connections. These connections allow me to keep in contact with them for future purposes, I can use them as references or for recommendations, and I can use their connections to help my social network grow and aid my search for employment. As the article says the public display of connections is important as it allows others to find you and vice versa. By displaying my connections there is the possibility of someone seeing my profile and connecting with me or even offering me a job.
LinkedIn also has the features of other social networks like joining groups, sending messages, and creating a profile, all in mind of business. Online networking is much easier and convenient that having to do it all face to face. And having sites where you can keep your network all in one place greatly enhances how you can communicate with them.

 

Boyd, d. m., & Ellison, N. B. (2007). "Social network sites: Definition, history, and scholarship." Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 13(1), article 11. Available at Library in eholdings database.

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Informal Computer-Mediated Communication

This post is explains an example of informal CMC. The Eportfolio discussion in Blackboard under the Discussion Board section illustrates what informal CMC can be like. Characteristics of informal CMC include being interactive, experience focused, using informal language, low cost, and others according to the Hrastinski article. When looking at the Prezi or Scoop-it discussions under the Eportfolio discussion one can see these types of characteristics in our conversations. 

For starters the language is informal. Punctuation is not always correct and the language used is casual. Interactivity is obvious because we are communicating to each other our reasons for and against what we should use for our final project. Interactivity helped spark a good decision. The "cost" of communication was low in that it was easy to communicate with each other; we all had access to each other and were working towards a common goal. In a way the conversations were also experience-focused and participant organized. We navigated each option for our project and gave our feedback based on our personal experiences with those sites. We were instructed to discuss these options with each other as a class but the way we went about discussing our options was left up to the students so we did organize how the conversation went about. 

Informal CMC is just as important and formal CMC. Each one has its advantages and can bring out certain things that the other can't. In informal communication instant reactions are shared and the option of direct feedback can help lead to quicker solutions. If the class each posted their own ideas and were not able to discuss with each other there may not have been such a fine agreement between classmates. Informal CMC can make decision processes easier along with the ability to bring people closer and bring out more personal feelings. 

 

Hrastinski, S. (2010). Informal and formal dimensions of computer-mediated communication: A model. International Journal of Networking and Virtual Organisations, 7(1), 23-38. Available at: http://is2.lse.ac.uk/asp/aspecis/20080188.pdf

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New Ways to Communicate Online: TexttheMob

New Ways to Communicate Online: TexttheMob | CMC 375 | Scoop.it

This blog post is an example of language in CMC. Susan Herring says that computer-mediated communication is "distinguished by its focus on language and language use in computer networked environments. According to the article most CMC is text-based like the blog post that I chose to use to illustrate this topic. The blog is read by other people, on a computer screen, and most likely in a different location than myself, who is the one that sent the message. The medium for this type of CMC is through a computer which dictates the type of language that can be used and the amount of channels that can also be used. 

Discourse through computers, like this one, is a "lean" channel where you can only communicate visually and information is limited to typed text. The linked blog post also has an image which can also be read visually. Other things like synchronicity and feedback mechanisms determine the language of a CMC source. blog post is asynchronous meaning that users do not need to be logged on at the same time to communicate. The post is also one-way, the message was displayed as a whole before any viewer could see it and leave feedback. Because I knew the post would not be read by anyone before I displayed it and I knew no one would be able to leave feedback, I had to decide the type of language to use in the post. It is a perception that computer-mediated language is less accurate and more complex than anything written but that is not always true. 

Other language distinctions that can be seen as invisible on the internet are demographics such as social class, race, and ethnicity. In my post is very hard to tell where I am from or what I look like. Anonymity can depend on the medium used. One thing that is known is my gender and my name by looking at the end of the blog post. 

Formality is another point that dictates the type of language that will be used in a CMC interaction. Language is very important in CMC and choosing the correct language can mean the difference in understanding and confusion. There are many elements that make up CMC language and it's important to take each one into consideration. 

 

Herring, S. (CMD) (2001) Computer-Mediated Discourse. Handbook of Discourse Analysis, edited by Deborah Tannen, Deborah Schiffrin, and Heidi Hamilton. Oxford: Blackwell. Available at: http://www.let.rug.nl/redeker/herring.pdf

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Benefits of Facebook for Adults Over the Age of Forty

This blog post is an example of formal computer-mediated communication. In the blog linked above we were trying to appeal to an audience ages forty and up. It is important to know who your audience is when communicating to them, especially with an older audience because there is a gap in the way younger and older generations speak, espeicially through computers. Formal computer-mediated communication has certain characteristics as explained in the Hrastinski article about formal/informal CMC. Formal CMC is scheduled, one-way, and has a preset agenda. The blog that we put together was designed and planned out and gives one-way directions although readers can leave comments. Content is arranged specifically to cater to older adults; it is organized step by step and in a specific order. The blog is also content focused, we do not really talk about personal experience just trying to give and explain information pertaining to Facebook. It uses formal language which means correct sentence structure, punctuation, spelling, and grammar. Informal CMC according to the article may be more spontaneous and language would not be as professional. 

Hrastinski says that the medium itself and how the medium of communication is used will affect the degree of formality. Blogs can be formal or informal depending on who is writing them. A lot of younger kids and students have their own blogs where they share their thoughts and feelings about things where professionals can also have blogs to share advice, hints and tips, or new information. The blog that we put together lies in the area of professional communication. Knowing your audience will help you decide which ways of communication would be most effective. Using informal language and terms would not help adults learn how to use Facebook, it would just confuse them even more. It is important to be clear as to which way you are communicating online, especially when it is one-way like formal CMC. Our blog does a good job of communicating correctly to our audience and sticking with one type of CMC. 

 

Hrastinski, S. (2010). Informal and formal dimensions of computer-mediated communication: A model. International Journal of Networking and Virtual Organisations, 7(1), 23-38. Available at: http://is2.lse.ac.uk/asp/aspecis/20080188.pdf

 


 

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Facebook Profile - My True Identity

This blog post is an example of identity development. By using my Facebook profile I am showing my "actual" identity. According to the Ellion, Heino, and Gibbs article the actual self shows attributes an individual possesses. My Facebook profile shows who I really am and the thinks that I really like. Facebook is the perfect technology to use to show your identity because it allows you to post almost anything you would like others to see about yourself. There are various options to show who you are; you can write them in your profile, you can "like" them on Facebook, or you can post pictures and videos to show your true identity. In my profile you can view my school information, sports teams that I like, activities that I do, and you can also view my pictures to see what I like and who I hang out with.

As the article states it is difficult to balance accuracy and desirability in your self-presentation. It is easy to make a fake profile on Facebook and create a seperate identity for yourself but Facebook is a social network where creating a fake profile really wouldn't give you any advantage. Its purpose is to let you interact with people you know through who you really are. The article also discusses establishing credibility with an online identity. One way is to "show"who you are rather than just by listing attributes. My facebook profile shows photos and video of who I am and there are also lists of my employment and education history. By seeing things that I do in my pictures and looking at places I have worked an outside viewer can get a good idea of who I really am and what I like.

Online identities can be whatever you want them to be. Developing your identity is up to the user and issues like credibility, accuracy, and misrepresentation need to be considered. Facebook is a great network to guide relationship building however if you are not your true self there is not much of a purpose to the site. Managing your presentation is the first step to how someone uses computer-mediated communicatioin as a whole.

 

Ellison, N., Heino, R., & Gibbs, J. (2006). Managing impressions online: Self-presentation processes in the online dating environment. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 11(2), article 2.http://jcmc.indiana.edu/vol11/issue2/ellison.html

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