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Learning in, with and for the Social Web


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Lecture at the Goethe-Institute New York and the MobilityShifts conference, 13th October 2011

Published in: Education, Technology

Learning in, with and for the Social Web

  1. 1. Learning in, with and for the Social Web<br />Dr. Jan-Hinrik Schmidt<br />Senior Researcherfor digital interactive mediaand political communication<br />New York, 13th October 2011<br />
  2. 2. Agenda<br /><ul><li>Starting with… the Digital Natives
  3. 3. Social Web… key practices
  4. 4. Social Web… changing public sphere
  5. 5. Social Web… some consequences
  6. 6. Outlook</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 2 of 26<br />
  7. 7. What if there were no Internet?<br />[Statements from focus group discussions in Hamburg and Lingen]<br /><ul><li>„I think I‘d be ok. But if you know that it existed and then it is turned off – I think I‘ll go nuts. [- Why? -] I would miss Youtube-Videos and stuff, they are funny. Or chatting.“ [14 years, female]
  8. 8. „I use the Internet for communication a lot – Messenger almost 24 hours a day, and SchülerVZ is highly frequented of course. But I also use it to get the information I need.“ [17 years, male]
  9. 9. „You can do without the Internet, you can always do things outside the Internet. Playstation for example, or Nintendo DS, there is a lot to do. You don‘t always have to rush online, otherwise you‘re an Internet-Freak.“ [13 years, female]</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 3 of 26<br />
  10. 10. Digital Natives?<br />Social Web<br />Page 4 of 26<br />
  11. 11. Research at the Hans-Bredow-Institute <br />“Heranwachsen mit dem Social Web”<br />“Das neue Netz”<br />“EU Kids Online“<br />In german<br />Monography on web 2.0 and its consequences<br />Internet and everyday life of 12 to 24 yrs old in Germany<br />Pan-European study (9 to 16 yrs old and their parents)<br />Social Web<br />Page 5 of 26<br />
  12. 12. Some data on internet use in Europe<br />% of 9 to 16 year old Internet users who have profile on a SNS<br />Quelle: EU Kids Online (<br />Social Web<br />Page 6 of 26<br />
  13. 13. Agenda<br /><ul><li>Starting with… the Digital Natives
  14. 14. Social Web… key practices
  15. 15. Social Web… changing public sphere
  16. 16. Social Web… some consequences
  17. 17. Outlook</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 7 of 26<br />
  18. 18. Three practices<br /><ul><li>Identity Management (Presenting individual interests, opinions, experiences, skills, etc., etc.)
  19. 19. Relationship Management(Maintaining existing and building new relationships)
  20. 20. Information Management (co-creating, filtering and re-distributing relevant information / knowledge / content)</li></ul>The Internet, esp. the social web, lowers barriers for …<br />Social Web<br />Page 8 of 26<br />
  21. 21. Social Web in context<br /><ul><li>Social Web is framed by more general social trends
  22. 22. „networked individuality“
  23. 23. „information society / overflow“
  24. 24. Thus, by using the Social Web one also engages in more general social practices</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 9 of 26<br />
  25. 25. Internet – a distinct world?<br /><ul><li>Myth #1: „The Internet is a „cyberspace“ where people leave their bodies behind and create new identities.“</li></ul> But: How is identity represented on the Social Web?<br />Social Web<br />Page 10 of 26<br />
  26. 26. Representing Identity<br />Social Web<br />Page 11 of 26<br />
  27. 27. Articulated social networks<br /><ul><li>Myth #2: „There are no real friendships on the internet, only ephemeral communication with strangers.“
  28. 28. 12 to 24 year-old users of Social Network Sites [in DE; 2008] had …
  29. 29. … on average: 130 friends
  30. 30. … of which they had personally met:</li></ul>most: 85 percent<br />less than half: 5 percent<br /><ul><li>… of which they consider close friends: </li></ul>most: 15 percent<br />less than half: 62 percent<br /> The social web affords maintaining social connections grounded in „real life“ – the distinction between „virtual and real“ becomes obsolete<br />Data source: Schmidt/Paus-Hasebrink/Hasebrink 2009<br />Social Web<br />Page 12 of 26<br />
  31. 31. Agenda<br /><ul><li>Starting with… the Digital Natives
  32. 32. Social Web… key practices
  33. 33. Social Web… changing public sphere
  34. 34. Social Web… some consequences
  35. 35. Outlook</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 13 of 26<br />
  36. 36. Convergence of conversations and publications (I)<br />Social Web brings about a new type of personal public sphere, where people…<br /><ul><li>(a) select information according to criteria of personal relevance,[instead of journalistic news factors or general relevance]
  37. 37. (b) address an (intended) audience of their social network,[instead of the disperse, unknown and unconnected audience of mass media]
  38. 38. (c) and communicate in the mode of „conversation“.[instead of the mode of „publishing“]</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 14 of 26<br />
  39. 39. Convergence of conversations and publications (II)<br /><ul><li>Social Web is further blurring the separation between „senders“ and „receivers“ which is central to mass communication
  40. 40. Networked public spheres consist of „microcontent“ which might originate from all different sources, but is „de-bundled“ and filtered through social connections
  41. 41. „Re-bundled“ content comes not as issues, editions or linear programmes, but as constant flow of information in „streams“ and „feeds“ </li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 15 of 26<br />
  42. 42. Convergence of conversations and publications (III)<br /><ul><li>Myth #3: „Professional journalism will be replaced by Blogs, Facebook and Twitter.“
  43. 43. Rather than being replaced, journalism looses its monopoly on selecting, filtering, bundling and distributing information to society, …</li></ul>… because non-journalistic users provide information („user-generated content“)<br />… because users act as filters and multiplicators of information within their social networks<br /> The convergence of conversation and publication will shape the way we communicate and inform ourselves – individually and as societies<br />+1, Fav-Stern, Retweet<br />Social Web<br />Page 16 of 26<br />
  44. 44. Agenda<br /><ul><li>Starting with… the Digital Natives
  45. 45. Social Web… key practices
  46. 46. Social Web… changing public sphere
  47. 47. Social Web… some consequences
  48. 48. Outlook</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 17 of 26<br />
  49. 49. Responsibilities<br /><ul><li>Contrary to the „digital native“ narrative, a responsible and reflected use does not come automatically with age (or youth…)
  50. 50. Rather, adolescents and adults alike have to be empowered to…</li></ul>e.g. keep control over personal information and privacy<br />e.g. use online tools in order to engage in social affairs and debates<br />e.g. participate in decisions regarding the shape of the social web itself<br />Social Web<br />Page 18 of 26<br />„Attention parents!<br />Dangerous area for kids“<br />
  51. 51. (1) Architecture and Audience<br />Social Web<br />Page 19 of 26<br />Four characteristics of communicative architecture in networked publics(1) make control over information complicated<br />replicability<br />scalability<br />persistence<br />searchability<br /><br /><br /><br /><br />a) Intended audience: Whom do I have in mind when using a particular online service or plaform?<br />b) Addressed audience: Whom do I address particular information in a particular situation?<br />c) Empirical audience: Who is de facto noticing information or communication? <br />d) Potential audience: Who might be able to eventually access the information or communication? <br />(1) boyd 2008<br />
  52. 52. (1) On dutch windows<br /><br />Social Web<br />Page 20 of 26<br />
  53. 53. (2) Layered participation<br /><ul><li>Social Web affords different modes of political participation (1)</li></ul>Positioning yourself: signal political beliefs or opinions<br />Engaging in debates: arguing about political issues with others<br />Activating others: Mobilizing other people for political action<br />Social Web<br />Page 21 of 26<br />(1) Wagner, Brüggen & Gebel 2008<br />
  54. 54. (3) Designing tools and spaces <br /><ul><li>Most popular platforms and services are controlled by commercial organizations
  55. 55. Users are not „citizens“, but „customers“ and „product“ at the same time
  56. 56. Rights and responsibilities are governed by contract and software code
  57. 57. Formalized procedures for appeals or self-governing exist rarely or rudimentary
  58. 58. Most users lack awareness to engage in collective action</li></ul> Convergence of media literacy and political literacy<br />Social Web<br />Page 22 of 26<br />
  59. 59. (3) The naked gnome demonstration<br />Social Web<br />Page 23 of 26<br />
  60. 60. Conclusion and outlook<br /><ul><li>The Social Web is an integral and for large parts indispensable part of everyday life – not only for the „digital natives“, but for an ever-growing part of adults as well
  61. 61. Thus, the consequences of the Social Web touch not only on individual users, but also on societies as a whole
  62. 62. It affords specific practices and a new type of „personal public spheres“
  63. 63. It blurs established distinctions between the „public“ and the „private“
  64. 64. It affords and calls for new modes of political and social participation
  65. 65. Learning in, with and for the Social Web is critical for inclusion in contemporary societies
  66. 66. How can we achieve this? Let‘s discuss – and come visit #mobilityshifts </li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 24 of 26<br />
  67. 67. Thank you!<br />Dr. Jan-Hinrik Schmidt<br />Hans-Bredow-Institut<br />Warburgstr. 8-10, 20354 Hamburg<br /><br /><br /><br /><br />Social Web<br />Page 25 of 26<br />
  68. 68. Image credits<br /><ul><li>Slide 10ff.:
  69. 69. © Hapf2,
  70. 70. CC BY-NC-SA-2.0, Myles!,
  71. 71. CC BY-NC-ND-2.0, Axel V,
  72. 72. Slide 12: © Robbie Cooper;
  73. 73. Slide 17: CC-BY-NC-ND-2.0, Dominic Dada,
  74. 74. Slide 18: CC-BY-NC-ND-2.0, Toby Bradbury,
  75. 75. Slide 20: Jan Schmidt</li></ul>Social Web<br />Page 26 of 26<br />