Many people I know are quite naive about social media – and the internet in general. Scared in fact. They think sharing updates and photos about their lives on Facebook is dangerous. They don’t understand the perceived mundane tweets of Twitter. “Why do you want the world to know about what you had for breakfast?” people have asked me. And “what’s a blog?” is the question I get asked when I speak of my blog. “An online diary” I say.They freak out at the thought of me sharing so much of my life online, and some have commented they think social media is a waste of time. For me social media is the launchpad for my writing career. It has also brought me so many new friends. I’ve put so much of my life online and nothing bad has happened to me – in fact I get less harassment online than I do ‘in real life’.
This week I’ve had a few social media wins. I don’t know whether these wins will influence those that are scared about social media to start using it in any way, but I hope they can see that social media can be for good.
First up – I was a the supermarket last week, looking for washing up gloves. I am allergic to latex and cannot use the regular rubber gloves. There were no latex free gloves in my local Coles. So I took a photo of the wall of gloves, and tweeted Coles.
This blog represents my personal opinions and experiences. It does not reflect those of my employers’.
The information I provide about ichthyosis is mostly based on personal experiences. Please seek medical advice or counseling before trying any new treatments I’ve written about.
After seeing that someone from my organisation’s IP address had visited my blog a high number of times, and coming across an updated social media policy, I gave the Australian Public Service Commission’s (APSC) ethics helpline a call to discuss whether I should put a disclaimer on my blog. After our conversation, I researched some different disclaimers, and put my own together.
A few weeks after that conversation, I received an email from the APSC asking me to speak on a panel about the responsible use of social media as a public servant. So while many of my fellow bloggers will be at the Digital Parents Conference next week, I’ll be in Canberra speaking to a range of government employees and stakeholders about how I keep my blogging and social media activity separate to my day job. I am so pleased to be recognised for my blog in the workplace. I have asked whether I can blog about the event, and they don’t see a problem.
Another thing I am pleased about is the spread of my my blog entries and lovely comments, particularly from the medical community after my post about responsible social media use as a patient.
And there have been two other (quite frivolous) social media wins.
A tweet from Bob Evans at 4 am telling me I was amazing!
(Patience from The Grates suggested that I must be amazing given he tweeted me at 4 am!
And this – the only time I will be featured alongside model Erin McNaught in a magazing – my tweet in Shop Til You Drop mag.