At the first glance of any one of my social media accounts or writing posts, I’m sure you may be able to make up a persona about who you think I am. You may think I am a happy young person based off a photo with a big smile on my face. Possibly that I am having the time of my life when I post a photo on top of a mountain. Or see that I am a dog person when I post a photo with my pup. All of these things make up a highlight reel of what I would like people to see. We may think that we know people that we see on social media, however, they only post things that they want others to see and know about their lives. All of the struggles and not so happy things are left in the dark, far away from others.
As stated here by Fagan, we present an edited version of who we are in real life, to show a much more interesting and likeable person. Now more then ever are young people more and more centered around how they are presented on social media. Whether it is showing off expensive brand clothing, luxurious vacations, or having thousands of followers, young people want to show that they have the best of the best. It is here that we lose site of being grateful for what we have and instead trade it in for artificial happiness.
At the end of the day, we hope that our social media accounts are only filled with the information that we wish to share with others. In Monica Lewinsky’s TED talk, she shares her story of a private matter being broadcasted over social media. Her story about instantly being a target for hate comments and bashing is saddening, as all of these unknown people felt they had the right to judge her and her personal life. Although many of us will never have to endure an experience such as this, we still may encounter similar circumstances. This may be rude comments on a photo or Facebook post or maybe even direct messages filled with unwanted opinions. Whatever it may be, people feel as though they can say whatever they want because they have the security of a screen in front of them. A lesson to be learned here, is that you never truly know what a person is going through. As I stated before, what one may post on social media is just a highlight and bringing them down for no reason can lead to more harm then you think.
To go hand-in-hand with this weeks lesson in EDTC300, we were assigned to sleuth on classmates to see what digital footprints we could dig up and make assumptions about who they are solely based on what we find. I personally did some digging on Erin Zinger, someone pretty easy to find! Erin’s name popped up quickly and I was brought to her professional teaching website and other private media accounts. I found that she is a semi-private person, only posting things such as having 2 siblings, where she is from and other personal likes and achievements. Erin is neither an over or under sharer, as she only releases the info she wants seen. As someone who is not following her, or knows her personally, I cannot see any info that would be very personal or private to her. From first glance I would say that Erin is a happy and welcoming person who would be easy to make friends with. Erin portrays a very professional online persona that I can clearly see is invested in her job and the children she works with.
Cyber sleuthing has truly been an eye-opener for me, as I haven’t searched for myself online for a long time. It is definitely something that I would suggest for everyone to do, because having a positive digital footprint is very important. Take care of yourself in the cyber world and be sure to be kind!