The number of popular social networks may seem overwhelming. We can share links, ideas, comments, jokes, pictures and everything else, and new social media options seem to pop-up everyday. This may discourage learners, teachers, instructional designers and eLearning professionals from using the fantastic benefits of a social presence on the internet.
Social media may overlap – and they often do in some ways – but they are not equivalent. Each offers its own unique set of attributes. Some of them focus on identity, some on topics, some on sharing feelings. And within each group there are many important and crucial nuances to keep them apart.
One way to stay oriented in this seemingly chaotic jungle is to keep in mind what is the underlying communicating need that drives the usage of these media. Remembering what questions each of these media is asking to us as users, and in particular as learners, is a simple trick to stay oriented and capture the essence of these media.
The video here focuses on 8 popular social networks and discusses the questions lying behind each of them, using the point of view of learning. The 8 platforms considered are Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, YouTube, Pinterest, Spotify, Scoop.It and Learnist.
Another interesting aspect of focusing on the questions lying behind social media is that you might come up with some questions which are not yet answered, or not answered in an optimal way. Can you identify such questions and imagine how to build the optimal social media tool around them?