Vicky nails it


Yesterday morning, I had the honour of reading this blog post from Vicky Loras.

Social Media and the PhD: Making Connections 

According to my Twitter profiles, I drank the Kool-Aid in August of 2007.

It would have been at a summer institute and I suspect who my inspiration for joining and creating the account was but I don’t want to name names lest I name the wrong one.

I do remember the message from the workshop about how social media will change my professional and personal life. I signed up immediately. This sounded like something that would be life-altering.

I was never so disappointed.

Nothing in my life changed.

I do remember having a heart-to-heart with Rodd Lucier at some point after that and he pointed out what I now know is obvious. You have to follow the right people. And lots of them! Apparently, the ones that I followed weren’t the right ones.

So, how do you find the right ones?

The technique seemed like a big pyramid scheme. Find just one or two people that inspire you and then look at who they follow to give them inspiration and follow them. After a while, it was kind of overwhelming because there were so many people that inspired me. That led me to learn about Twitter lists so that I could focus on a particular theme. I needed a better tool than the standard Twitter client and Tweetdeck and Hootsuite became my friends.

It still befuddles me that there are people that don’t get it. Slowly, we’re seeing people join and I like to think I help the cause with what I do on Friday mornings.

I’ve been to many professional learning events; I’ve led so many professional learning events. They’re terrific because it’s face-to-face learning and discussions but, sadly, they’re limited to those that are there. Learning online changes everything.

One of the real gems that I ended up following was Ms. Loras herself. She introduced me to a whole group of English educators in Europe. Before Covid, they always seem to have amazing times, getting together all over the continent, but more importantly sharing things amongst themselves (and anyone who happens to follow them).

Vicky really is inspirational and brings a wealth of wisdom to any conversation. That’s one of the reasons that we enjoy having her as a co-host on voicEd Radio’s This Week in Ontario Edublogs. And, she’s just generally a nice person.

As Vicky works on her Ph.D., she’s back leveraging social media for her benefit and that’s the strong, strong message in this post. She has cut back her social networking to focus on what matters and this matters for her – TwitterLinkedInInstagram. She dropped Facebook so perhaps I’ll announce this blog post there for others to learn how to connect to her.

I’ve led many social media sessions and there were always two messages that I wanted people to walk away with…

  • Be selfish – focus on your personal growth
  • Share – if it’s good for you, chances are there others out there who could benefit from your experience

In her words…

Very often I receive an email from someone along the lines of “Vicky, I think this might interest you” and I love doing that for other people too!

I know that many people reading this blog have certainly embraced social media. I’m sure that you’ll want to help spread the word by sharing Vicky’s blog post. Right?

That’s what we do to spread the love and the learning.

Thank you, Vicky, so much for sharing your thoughts. You most definitely nailed it.

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OTR Links 09/14/2022


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