Resist the colour of Twitter?

Within the business and education sectors, some people prefer to maintain a ‘professional’ social  network for work-related communication and collaboration, while maintaining a ‘personal’ social network to communicate and share with family and friends. Others prefer to merge or integrate their professional and personal lives as a single ‘connected’ network.

Yet in my experience, rather a lot more hardly make use of the affordances of technologies, and prefer to remain back in the 20th century.  While I understand this when the choice is actively made based on knowledge of social media, I have run out of excuses to justify this position for educators at any time. In a technology-driven society, things change at a faster rate than ever before in history. We need to be connected.

Do we really need connected educators? Tom Whitby provides a ‘neat’ rationale for being connected:

Who educators connect with is a very critical consideration. Acquiring numbers of educators who share concerns and interests is essential. Once an educator connects with other educators, they begin to collect them as sources in a Professional Learning Network of educators, a PLN. A connected educator may then access any or all of these sources for the purpose of communication, collaboration, or creation. This connectedness is not bound by bricks and mortar. It is not bound by city limits or state lines. It is not limited by countries borders. The only nagging inconvenience is dealing with time zones on a global level.

Yes, there have been any number of examples in the last several years about the influence of social media, but this next story caught my eye today.

A Quiet [Twitter] Protest

In Istanbul, known as the city of seven hills, dozens of public stairways crisscross centuries-old neighborhoods, giving pedestrians a way to avoid heavy car traffic on the streets.

Those walkways generally attract little notice, but that changed last week, when a retired forestry engineer decided to paint the Findikli stairs in the central district of Beyoglu in all the colors of the rainbow — an act of guerrilla beautification that unintentionally triggered a fresh ripple of anti-government protests.

The retiree behind the caper, Huseyin Cetinel, 64, told the local news media that his original motivation for applying a fresh coat of paint to the stairs was not activism, but the desire “to make people smile.” Mr. Cetinel said he spent nearly $800 on paint and devoted four days to sprucing up the stairs, with help from his son-in-law.

“Don’t you think Findikli Stairs are just amazing? Thanks to those who did it,” one Twitter user wrote last week.

What happened next in the story was interesting.

What transformed the painted stairs into a political issue was the surprise that Findikli residents woke up to last Friday: the stairs had been hastily, and somewhat unconvincingly, repainted in their original color, a dark cement gray.

Activists began organizing on Twitter almost immediately, using the hashtag #DirenMerdiven, or ResistStairs — a reference to the hashtag used for protests in June against government plans to build a shopping mall in place of the city’s Gezi Park, #DirenGeziPark, or ResistGeziPark.

The rest is as you would expect – thanks to social action.  Read more at New York Times.

“But I’m already active on Twitter” I hear you protest?

Well I have something else to share with you that I know others have enjoyed.  Check out this  presentation to find out the number one mistakes that everyone makes on Twitter.

Image: cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by Lenore Edman

Oh my! Twitter makes history for Google search

While the short form musings of a generation chronicled by Twitter might seem ephemeral, the Library of Congress wants to save them for posterity — and Google wants to let you search them like an archive! We’ve already seen the 140-character status updates on what people are doing turn into a global publishing phenomenon.

Now Twitter messages will be archived permanently by the Library of Congress.

The Twitter archive of all public tweets, starting from its inception in March 2006, will join such august collections such as letters from the Civil War and famous photographs from Great Depression-era works project.

For its part, Google thinks you shouldn’t have to wait to start doing sociological and anthropological research into the Twitter archive — so it’s turning on a feature that lets you choose a point in time and start to “replay” the short-form messages from that point on. Google’s search combines Twitter updates with those from MySpace, Facebook and its own fledgling micro-publishing service Buzz.

The point of all this?

We’re watching the making of digital history – again!  You may still have a lot of people to explain Twitter to – now you have an additional reason to make them sit up and take notice.

Via Andrew Hiskens on Twitter and Wired.

Another Great Twitter Guide

Twitter can be confusing at best, and downright intimidating to many newcomers.

This guide should give you the basics you need to get more out of Twitter, whether you use it for your business or personal life.

This Twitter Guide covers Twitter basics, terminology, etiquette, tools, twitter clients to use on your computer, other Twitter services, finding friends, using lists, communication, promotion, and more. Additional links to read are also included and combined will provide all the information you need to learn about or use Twitter effectively.

Posted via web from Library Cloud

Don’t Miss These Twitter and Facebook Guides

Whether you are teaching a class, helping a friend or just looking for information for yourself these guides from Mashable are a great resource.

The Facebook Guide topics include:

  • Facebook 101: The Basics
  • Managing Your Facebook Wall
  • Using Facebook for Business
  • How to become a fan of Mashable
  • Using Facebook Applications
  • Facebook 305:Advanced Topics

Twitter Guide topics include:

  • Twitter 101 – The Basics
  • Building Your Twitter Community
  • Twitter for Business
  • Twitter Guide Book To Go: PDF Download and Slideshow
  • Sharing on Twitter
  • Managing Your Twitter Stream

Twitter borked again – but not Ask a Librarian!

Working ever so hard on editing some book materials, I found I was relying on my online connections to deliver quick answers to curly questions. One port of call was Ask a Librarian from the National Library of Australia.

I logged on for a quick real-time reference query. Wonderful personal service – and a nice chance to chuckle (via text) with a fellow professional. My chat log was emailed to me just as soon as I logged off – containing all the links to information I needed.

This is very cool!

My other port of call was – of course – twitter. My queries resulted in general responses, so quick Direct Message assistance, and some regular help with people willing to go home and ferret around to find specifically the information I needed.

BUT Twitter got Borked! We all went off line – mid conversation!  It’s times like this that I realise how having no Twitter is just like having no phone line used to be in ‘the old days’.

From Mashable: Twitter Has Been Hacked; BBC News: Pro Iranian Hackers Hit Twitter and Opposition Websites.

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The Copy-and-Post Revolution in (Micro) Blogging

Autoposting Connects the Dots to Twitter and Facebook: For those of us that have multiple social media accounts (think: Flickr, Twitter, personal blog, Facebook), there is always a dilemma of where to post what, and whether to replicate posts across multiple sites.  This dilemma is even more vexing since, whereas Twitter tweets are limited to 140 character text and links, Facebook posts can include pictures, text and video of variable lengths, and personal blogs are as custom as you want to get. Here, Posterous really shines, giving you the ability to autopost your posterous posts to one or more services, defaulting the title of the post as the Twitter tweet

This is a very useful post – about Posterous. Of course, I shared my reading of this via Posterous!

Posted via web from Heyjude’s posterous

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Making Twitter work for me – and you!

I’ve been using Twitter for what seems a long time – and in that time I have learnt that Twitter is an important part of  my whole toolkit of professional learning and sharing. I have also learnt that it is important to bend Twitter to the purpose I want to use it for!
Twitter has been growing and changing since it first arrived on the scene.  The advent of Twitter and other social networking sites, as well as the popularity of text messaging, have made short-form communication an everyday reality.  But expressing yourself clearly in short bursts-particularly in the 140-character limit of Twitter-takes special writing skill.
Carol L. Tilley, a professor of library and information science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,  believes the character constraint of Twitter Texting can Enhance Writing Skills.
If renowned author Ernest Hemingway could write a full story in just six words (“For sale: baby shoes, never worn”), then teachers and librarians should encourage their students to use Twitter and text messages as part of their literacy lessons
For me, Twitter texting is about collaboration, sharing, and supporting my colleagues. My Twitter @heyjudeonline is a mix of information finds, queries, responses, and light chatter.
The information I  “put out there” is drawn from my RSS reading at Feedly and other sources. Twitter is the addition to my blog, and the quickest way I know to share!!  But thanks to Feedly, I can not only share on Twitter, but can (almost simultaneously) add important information to my delicious account for Heyjude, or post it on my Facebook profile.
For an evolving development  of Twitter, or to pick up the latest information, just take a peek at my Delicious link for Twitter.  I keep it all, and it’s certainly getting to be very extensive indeed!
The next key evolution has been the capability to keep lists!  At last – a way to organise the people you follow.   To be honest, I haven’t yet had time to organise mine. I’ve been busy thinking through other avenues.
I now run 3 Twitter accounts – the most recent addition being specifically for School Libraries.
@heyjudeonline Educator, learner, blogger, librarian, technology girl, book and library lover. Transforming education and libraries. Innovation for life.
@LibraryCloud Innovative ideas in one tweet for School Libraries everywhere!
@librarycloud is brand new – and really focussed on learning, teaching, and all things to help organise a fabulous school library.  I’m keeping this Twitter account clutter free – so that I can make a Twitter book out of it for you!

@Simplybooks Promoting reading and good literature, as well as providing links and information about quality approaches to reading education.

So you see, I’m keeping myself busy making Twitter work for me – and hopefully for you too!

Is there anything else I could do to help you?

Meanwhile – grab the Complete Guide to Twitter, or one of Tim Davies fabulous One Page Guides.

Tweet me now!

A colleague a few months ago asked, “so how do I know when you have send out a message on Twitter”?

Good question – especially if you are new to Twitter.

It’s  interesting to watch ‘newbies’ develop their own online etiquette and management of their Twitter use.  Lots of options, but there are a few key tips that we could all keep in mind as we ‘tweet’ away.

1. Profile: Decide on a private of public profile (I keep my public, as I am happy to share my information finds with anyone who is interested). Make sure to put some key information into you bio – nothing worse than non-information!

2. Discuss and Collaborate: Use the @ symbol to reply to anything of interest, or to have a conversation on a topic. Using the @ symbol  lets you know if someone has tweeted a message to you, started a conversation, or replied to a general query for help.  Ah hah, here’s the answer to my colleague’s question.

3. Direct Message: I set up my DM to come to my email anyway, so I know if I have received an important message that I might want to jump right over to Twitter to respond to. After all, I don’t share my email with everyone but it’s a communication tool that is always at my fingertips – especially at work!

4. Keeping the Conversation live: Each time you jump onto Twitter (some people keep a steady stream open in the background using TweetDeck or a similar tool) be sure to click on your @messages and your DM (Direct messages).

5. Favourites: Nothing beats the knowledge power of the crowd.  There are many good things to follow up at a later time. Just “favourite” the tweet – and when you have time later (weeks later sometimes)  you can revisit all your favourites for thorough investigation!!  I have to confess this gets away with me a bit – so the school hols are a good time to regroup and clear out your list 🙂

6. Digging deeper: Use the power of search to find tweets of interest on your area of interest. Of course, trending topics can be interesting too.

7. Bend it to your purpose: The power of the hashtag means you can keep a theme going, or focus on a workshop or conference presentation – sharing information with others.  For example #necc09 brings back all the wonderful thoughts, ideas, reflections and information links from the NECC (National Education Computing Conference) Washington this year!

8. Pushing the information further: Of course one of the wonderful things of interconnected personal networks is the capacity to distribute and share information. The power of RT is one to watch – “re-tweet” – and Twitter etiquette encourages us to attribute to the original message.  For example deangroom@heyjudeonline thanks for the link – is so funny – love the demo!

Is this all for real?

You bet!  Organisations the world over are communicating to educators and librarians with relevant and important information.  Libraries, Tech organisations, the Board of Studies NSW and other organisations,  Tertiary libraries, publishers, media news and more. I have a huge collection @heyjudeonline – feel free to browse.

I think it’s fab when schools begin to use the power of Twitter.  St Peter’s at Tuggerah @spcct are sending out updates to their school community.

I am running  a Twitter account for our library at  SimplyBooksPromoting reading and good literature, as well as providing links and information about quality approaches to boys reading education.

sportingMy school,  Joeys,  is trying out  Twitter for Live Sport Results on Twitter. Results will be updated regularly each Saturday throughout the season. The page will also include any last minute changes to fixtures and wet weather information.

Follow JoeysSport on Twitter and make sure you get SJC’s sports results as they happen.

For more insights into twittering for educators and librarians check out :-

Using Twitter to develop a PLN

Twitter Collaboration Stories

Nine Great Reasons why Teachers should Twitter

A Teacher’s Guide to Twitter

Twitter for Teachers

Top Librarian Tweeters

Twitter for Libraries and Librarians

I use HootSuite to manage more than one account – saves the login logout saga!   Use the secret weapon – a Hootlet! to send a tweet to one or more accounts as you surf the web!  Just use Tweetie on your iPhone to track and tweet!

The Google plunge!

You thought you knew all about Google did you?

Let me tell you, I am constantly amazed at how little I know about what that behemoth organisation is up too.  I’m a google user – of course – but you’d have to wonder where it is all going!

So now you want a quick way to keep up?  Here it is – not just the RSS feed from the official Google Blog, but following the Twitter updates of your chosen tools. Seems that Google has taken the plunge into Twitter.

Very pervasive when you think about it – what other organisation toolset has so many Twitter feeds happening?

There are 12 main twitter feeds, 7 geo-related feeds, 16 ads-related, 8 developer and technical, 2 culture & people, 7 country or region.

Grab whatever you want at Google Accounts on Twitter!