As I began looking into editing Wikipedia, I noticed that the Twitter Wikipedia page was set to “semi-private,” meaning that if I wanted to edit the page, I would have limited options in the editing process. There were several ways to edit on this page, however, they were not direct like on non-protected Wikipedia pages. If I wanted to, I could have requested an edit change, which may or may not be approved, or I could create a Wikipedia account, have it for at least 4 days, and make 10 edits on other pages. I chose not to edit through either of these options for several reasons. First, I wanted to make an instant edit and with the uncertainty of an edit requested being granted and added to the site, I opted out of this option. Also, I was not comfortable with make 10 edits to other Wikipedia pages. While I’m sure there are plenty of pages I could add insight to, this was not something that interested me. I felt it would be best to make an instant edit rather than waiting for something to be approved. Since editing the Twitter page seemed to no longer be an option, I also decided to edit the Microblogging Wikipedia page.
On the Microblogging page, I chose to make three edits – two under “Usage” and one under “Issues with micro blogging.” Under “Usage,” I chose to discuss Twitter’s relation to fast-paced societies and Twitter’s ability to be linked to other social media sites. This was done in two edits. The first says, “This type of social media site is representative of the growing, fast pace societies in the world that depend on instant information in order to stay current and up-to-date.” Then I added, “The uses of microblogging websites have become seemingly endless. There are many different ways to use them and the ways continue to grow in number and complexity. It is now possible to link websites, such as Pinterest, to Twitter, allowing you to Tweet the image you have just “pinned.” This new way to microblog, allows one to use microblogging as a communicative tool as well as a way to bring all aspects of social media into one, convenient location, making it easier and faster to search for and find information in this fast pace society.”
Under “Issues with micro blogging,” I added, “While privacy concerns remain an issue surrounding microblogging websites, Twitter has created a direct and easy way to initiate privacy settings on one’s account. With just one click you can set your account to private, meaning that only people that you approve of to follow your Twitter may see you Tweets. Everyone else will only see a page that says your Twitter account is set to private and in order to see your Tweets, the person must request to follow you. This way of creating privacy settings has seemingly made privacy settings a less complex and more direct action. Contrasted with Facebook where there are several different settings to choose from and the settings are customizable, Twitter allows you one of two options – public or private. Uneasiness may arise if a person’s Twitter is set to public, because any one may see your Tweets and anyone may follow you, without sending a request. While there is always the option of setting your Twitter account to private or private, it still remains important to be cautious about what you Tweet.”
With this edit, I wanted to give commentary to the fact that, while privacy issues remain a concern with social media sites, Twitter in particular has made it easy to privatize your account. It only takes one click of a mouse to set your entire page to private, unlike other sites.
With these two edits, I was able to incorporate my own insight into Twitter onto a broad, microblogging Wikipedia page. Whether or not my edits remain on the page and for how long is a different story. Hopefully the information I provided will give at least a few people more insight into the Twitter world and will accompany them while they learn and master the site.
After visiting the wikipedia page for online support groups (which is just a brief subtopic off support groups) I decided to add a brief comment regarding a benefit that wasn’t already mentioned on the page. A potential benefit that I learned from one of Kimball’s lectures was that online forum participation is asynchronous. In case my pasting of the print screen doesn’t show up on the blog, here is my submission-
“An additional benefit to online support groups is that participation is asynchronous. This means that it is not necessary for all participants to be logged into the forum simultaneously in order to communicate. An experience or question can be posted and others can answer questions or comment on posts whenever they are logged in and have an appropriate response. This characteristic allows for participation and mass communication without having to worry about time constraints.”
I added this to the wikipedia page this afternoon so I don’t know how long it will be visible.
Looking over the Wikipedia page on Internet Forums, I realized they had nothing included about identity.
To me, identity is very important to participating in a web forum, because it shapes how others perceive you. You have the ability to include or exclude information about yourself, or even generate made-up information. Before I really added much to my account biography, many people weren’t viewing my profile, and that may have been a reason no one really interacted with me – because I was no one, I had no identity! … Either way, no one really interacted with me a whole lot on a personal level, but that’s possibly due to other factors, like level of engagement, timeline, etc.
So, here is the post I added to Wikipedia!
I chose to update the Wikipedia page for “online activism”. I have to admit that I was a little hesitant to contribute to Wikipedia. I know its open to contribution by its users by design, but I was worried that what I could add may not be seen as coming from credible enough of a source to be worth including. My practicum research consisted of my own observation, and not necessarily facts that I read from scholarly research. In short, I treaded somewhat lightly, adding information and elaborating on concepts where I could. I’ve included photos of the page before I edited it, along with “after” photos so you can see exactly what I wrote:
-First, under the “criticism” section of Internet activism, I elaborated on the concept of digital divides and how it relates to activism, particularly which groups may be left out of activism online (those w/ less access to technology, or lacking technology literacy).
-Second, I expanded upon the idea of “slacktivisim” which was mentioned briefly under the ‘criticism’ section. The idea was introduced without detail, so I expanded upon it by explaining how Internet activism in itself cannot lead to tangible change and that many people fail to be activists beyond their computer.
-Third, I added additional information not touched upon in the ‘criticism’ section by summarizing arguments for and against the belief that the Internet is good for activism.
It ended up being pretty cool to see things that I wrote on a major website like Wikipedia…who knows how long it will stay up, but satisfying none the less. I believe my contributions to the site provide useful and important insight into issues associated with online activism.
I am happy to be able to say that I have mastered all aspects of LinkedIn, MySpace and Google+! Having social networking sites as my practicum topic was not only exciting but has been useful for making several new connections as well. Now that I have kept the class updated on my findings, and that I am in the process of finishing up my final practicum paper, I feel that I can finally make my addition to Wikipedia.
Social Networking Sites contribute to several different categories within Wikipedia due to the fact that so many exist, and that it is such a big topic. Since most information about LinkedIn and MySpace have already been added to Wikipedia, I decided to make an addition concerning Google+ since it is the most recent out of the three. While skimming through the social networking page privacy section, I noted that Google+’s unique settings had yet to be mentioned, so this is where I made my edition.
My addition may be deleted in the future, however I believe that my contribution to this page on Wikipedia is valuable. Google+ has the unique privacy settings that no other social networking site has mastered and this is worthy of being noted. Furthermore, while many of you may never use your practicum websites again, I am deeply satisfied with the fact that I will continue to use these social networking websites on a weekly, if not daily basis.
Just in case my addition does get removed, here is my addition to the privacy section:
The creators of Google+ have aimed at overcoming existing privacy issues. This social networking site offers unique privacy settings that not only allows users to make their individual profile private, but also makes it easy for users to share media, photos and posts with specific “circles.” I have included the link: http://ansonalex.com/tutorials/managing-privacy-settings-in-google-plus/ which can be accessed simply by clicking on “Google Plus” at the end of my addition.
The Wikipedia entry for LambdaMOO had a lot of information about the site outside of actually using the site, so I found it sort of hard at first to incorporate any information into the set categories they had. I was going to try and create a new category called “Commands” and list the different types of commands used on the MOO, but then Wiki editing uses some code that I didn’t want to mess up.
I changed/added to things to the entry, however. The first change I made is highlighted below. The original sentence said after jumping off the world that it would disable your account for “an amount of time.” Having actually almost jumped off the world, I knew this amount of time was three months, so I made the changes.
Another addition I made is also below. The Wiki entry talked about the original geography of the MOO, but not any current geography, so I added in a sentence with this information and an “@ command” that allowed me to show some knowledge of how to use commands in the MOO, too.
I think it was actually sort of cool to be able to change the Wiki page. It’s something that so many people look at, and if even one of my changes stays I think that would be really cool.