Sunday, December 18, 2011

EDvent Calendar: Day 19 (Safe social)

If Twitter gives you the Facebooks, here are a few safe ways to use Social Networks.
1. Edmodo is a Facebook-style site that is secure and operates a lot like a closed class space. My friend Tara T-J uses it with her classes but I don't have a lot of experience with it. "Edmodo provides a safe and easy way for your class to connect and collaborate, share content, and access homework, grades and school notices. Our goal is to help educators harness the power of social media to customize the classroom for each and every learner."

2. allows anyone to set up their own micro-blogging site. It's a really safe, secure way to allow organisations to tap into the power of micro-blogging for internal communication, micro-reflection, questions and answers, out of hours discussions etc. It's great and we use it at our school.

Face book
3. Diaspora is not the new Facebook. It's not even the old Facebook, but it is a project that has the potential to become very useful to schools as sites like Facebook create impenetrable walled gardens within the web. Tim Berners-Lee says
"Facebook, LinkedIn, Friendster and others typically provide value by capturing information as you enter it: your birthday, your e-mail address, your likes, and links indicating who is friends with whom and who is in which photograph...[but] once you enter your data into one of these services, you cannot easily use them on another site."
But Diaspora is different. It's completely free software, which means you can install the code wherever you want and retain ownership of your data. Right from the very start of the project, users have had the ability to remove their data and permanently delete it, unlike Facebook which makes it difficult to do this. Many schools and universities are wary of using Facebook to create communities around courses because all of the content they upload to Facebook can be used, modified or even sublicensed by Facebook in every possible way – even if they quit the service. It goes without saying that setting up your own internal Diaspora* server ensures you retain ownership of content long term. You can even link your account to Facebook if you really want to, which means you're posting into both environments at once.

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