Reflection on my own digital literacy #fos4l

My own digital literacyI took part in the Twitter chat today under the hashtag #foschat. My question was on how to deal with overwhelm. I consider myself pretty digitally literate. I have run a social media company: I have blogged and tweeted for a living. I have blogged since before the word became popular and they were called metajournals: my personal blog has been going since 2001.

Yet I suffer from overwhelm. There are now gaps of weeks and months in my blog when I haven’t found the time to blog – I’ve drafted many a post but never had time to finish one well enough to public – these days it’s not enough to write a good post, it must have graphics and social media links as well. I took about a year off Twitter, just reading and barely ever posting, while I got to grips with work, home and health. Twitter was talking up simply too much time and I was working one or two hours overtime a day just to keep up with it all. It was difficult – I learn SOOO much from my Twitterati and I felt cut off from ideas. Twitter and blogging, happily, is part of my job, but I still feel overwhelm.

If I feel it, how much more must others feel who have less time, less confidence and less inclination. I have decided which social media channels to concentrate on, but how does someone who is just starting out look at all these channels and possibilities and decide what they can afford to miss? Do they need a blog? Just reading others’ blogs can take a large proportion of each day… Do they need to tweet? What are the conventions? Even people whose jobs have social media in the title don’t always realise the conventions involved in social media.

So there is a real need here for education in how to be digitally literate. We need to use social media as one of our tools in learning to demonstrate how social media works and how it can be sued. We need to use blogs as one means of assessment. Social media and digital literacy can’t really be taught as a separate subject. An employability or study skills module may be a good fit for such training, but better that it’s embedded in the daily activities and assessments across every module. And that’s a challenge!

This is in response to activity 2 from FOS4L:  Digital literacy and identity. The C of the day: Connecting

Reflecting: Think about digital literacies and reflect on your current practice. Where are the challenges and opportunities? What could you do to help your students? Connect with colleagues and/or related research to develop your understanding further. (ilo-2)