Trading Textbooks for Twitter – Science Nation

GERALD KANE: So let’s turn to Twitter. MILES O’BRIEN: Think of it as Twitter 101,
a class in all things social media, not just tweeting; but Facebook, blogging,
Wikis and the like. Its happening at Boston College where they’re trying
to put their finger on this online explosion. FEMALE ONE: I actually just started using
Twitter for this class. MALE ONE: Initially, I started off with Facebook,
so I kind of like grew more familiar with it. But Twitter is definitely something
that’s picking it up. MALE TWO: I actually didn’t have a Twitter
until I enrolled in this class. MALE THREE: Twitter has grown on me. MILES O’BRIEN: If you’re a parent,this will come as
no surprise. Three quarters of teenagers who are online are plugged into social networks.
And email, forget about it. FEMALE TWO: It’s definitely not a
student-student, thing unless its’ some– your’e contacting someone for
like an organizational reason. MALE FOUR: I’m for Facebook; I think it’s the
best way to stay in touch with friends. GERALD KANE: Any questions about
the group project? MILES O’BRIEN: The class teaches when a tweet
is better than a blog, and why Wikis really work. GERALD KANE: What a Wiki does is lets you
put that document in one place and then everybody can edit it at the same time.
So, rather than passing it around, here’s a new tool that cuts through all of that.
These tools really have the ability to change the way people interact and collaborate with one another.
All these projects are going to be a Wiki page. So the extent to which you meet face to face
is up to you. FEMALE THREE: See that face to face thing? FEMALE FOUR: It’s over. GERALD KANE: No, it’s not over. MILES O’BRIEN: With support from the
National Science Foundation, Gerald Kane is studying the impact and the uses
of social media in education and the workplace. One of the companies he is focused on is
Sermo, a social network for doctors. DANIEL PALESTRANT: Wer’e in fact the largest
online physician community. And everyday, tens of thousands of physicians
login, share information with one another. MILES O’BRIEN: Kane says social networks
undermine corporate hierarchies, giving employees and customers a soapbox,
a virtual unfiltered megaphone to millions. GERALD KANE: These things are happening whether the organizations or whether the
managers like it or not. MILES O’BRIEN: So many companies have decided
it’s best to join them; otherwise, they’re left out of the conversation.
Kane hopes to devise computer simulations to help organizations take better
advantage of social networking applications. GERALD KANE: It’s inevitable.
I mean, it will happen. It’s up to the corporations and government agencies to decide if they
want to be the leaders or the followers of it. MILES O’BRIEN: For Science Nation,
I’m Miles O’Brien.

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