Posted by kendra75
In a blog post for 10,000 WORDS, sponsored by Media Bistro, Ben LaMothe writes about his experience lecturing to students at Central Michigan University. He discusses the relationship of social media to mass communications and journalism.
After his lecture, LaMothe had a Q & A session and found something surprised him. The students had voiced concerns that social media, specifically Facebook and Twitter, were just trends and eventually could fall to the wayside and become something of the past. They raised questions about whether education institutions should offer a degree or certificate program in social media. According to LaMothe, the students also had concerns that while conducting a job search they feared Facebook accounts could hurt their employment chances.
LaMothe writes, “Students are curious about how social media can impact their job search, but are also afraid of how it could be used against them in the search. Some students viewed the idea of maintaining a “clean” profile as unacceptable, and wondered if it was better to have no Facebook presence at all. I explained that if they view it as one or the other, then it would probably be better not to have a presence at all. It doesn’t give a recruiter something to use against you in the job seeking process. But when you’re applying for a job in media, it could work against you not having a presence.”
On this point, I would have to disagree slightly with LaMothe. I think a Facebook presence can in fact hurt employment chances. We have seen recently articles surfacing about employers requesting the passwords of the social media accounts of new hires. I know of fellow classmates who have applied for internships, find that they’re recruiter decided not to follow their “clean” or professional profile on Twitter, rather their personal one. Users say and show a lot about themselves on social media, and I think employers are aware of this, and choose to get a “real” feel for the person they have hired or may hire. I do agree that if you view it as having one or the other, you probably shouldn’t have an account at all. I’m not sure why anyone looking for employment these days, with the knowledge of how far-reaching the internet is, would post things on social media websites that they wouldn’t disclose in an interview.
I also agree with LaMothe, it could hurt your employment potential if you are looking for work in media. Considering the direction social media seems to have taken with regards to communication and journalism, not having a presence these days is just plain silly.
I know a lot of people who can’t stand the idea of social media and they don’t understand why people embrace it. For me personally, I have to embrace it. I need to be as absolutely connected as possible. Social media is a great tool for journalists, writers and just about anyone else who want to get published or be involved in the media and news industry. It’s a must.
LaMothe says in his article that sure, Facebook and Twitter could disappear, but he also says, “…But the ideas and the impact that the two sites have had on communications, customer service, and more, will just inhabit another site.”
Again, I would have to agree with LaMothe. The technology and methods of these two sites have made a deep and everlasting mark on communications, and the news industry. I don’t know of many high-profile reporters, commentators, news networks and shows that do not have a Twitter feed or a Facebook page, or some form of social media connected to them. This kind of communication, and connectivity is here to stay, whatever package it comes in.
- Why Social Media Skills Should be Taught in the Community College (carolhbates.com)
- Ways to measure your social media return on investment (marketing.yell.com)
- Employers Are Still Patrolling Facebook, And Your Drunk Stripper Photos Are Why You’re Not Hired (webpronews.com)
- Be social: Can social media improve customer satisfaction? (marketing.yell.com)
- Legislating Social Media Privacy (lorirtaylor.com)
- Survey: 37% of your prospective employers are looking you up on Facebook (thenextweb.com)
- Potential Hires: What To Look For In Their Social Media Profiles (sproutsocial.com)
- Is Facebook Part of Your Professional Network? (onlinecollege.org)