Social Media Experiment – Harrisburg Pulls Plug

Please read:

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2010/09/09/harrisburg

Just posted this comment:

I use social tools extensively in my teaching and interaction with students. From Facebook office hours to a WordPress/BuddyPress course site developed with an outstanding grad student, I would virtually have my hands tied during this “experiment.” I agree with commenters above: how about a week without phone service so faculty would have to walk across campus to chat with a colleague or ask a question. Or shut down access to library databases for a week and rely on the library’s print collection for resources.

I’m much more interested in the connected campus concept – how are educational institutions embracing emerging tech to extend their mission. A million times more interesting to study those possibilities/drawbacks/unforeseen consequences than “to evaluate the extent to which social media are woven into the professional and personal lives of the people on the Harrisburg campus” by turning everything off.

I also appreciate the comments about IRB applications. Thanks to Jen Waller for sending me the link. This will be useful for class discussion for sure! :-)

The provost’s bio is here: http://www.harrisburgu.net/about/biographies/?id=95

Related posts:

2 thoughts on “Social Media Experiment – Harrisburg Pulls Plug”

  1. Michael, Techdirt covered this briefly here http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100909/20512110960.shtml. Claims “It’s not because the university thinks these technologies are bad — in fact, the university has apparently done a lot to embrace these tools — but just to see what they learn from it, and get a sense of how integrated some of these tools have become in our lives.”

    I agree with some commenters on Inside Higher Ed that it’s somewhat unethical to conduct a forced experiment. In your case, it doesn’t *sound* as though WordPress is blocked, so presumably it wouldn’t damage your class site, at least.

Comments are closed.