It’s all about the journey: Goodbye UOSM2033


(Image created by me)

This module was like no other module I had done before, and quite honestly I had no idea what to expect. Whatever I expected however, was surpassed by miles. I have gained so much new knowledge through this module, and really built upon my digital skills. Most importantly, it has been a learning experience that I have thoroughly enjoyed. I had never blogged before October, and here I am now with a working blog only months later!

This module is of so much importance because the Internet is all around us, and is constantly changing and adapting – something that we use so often, should be studied and understood.

What have I gained?

At the beginning of the module I filled in a self test, ranking my digital skills on a scale of 1 to 5, based upon 7 categories. I then went back to this at the end of the module, and ranked how I had improved. My results showed improvements in every category, as displayed in the graphic below.


(Image created by me)

I had considered myself to be a ‘digital resident’ before this module, therefore wasn’t expecting much change, however was thrilled to see how much difference there was in mere months.

Going from the first topic where I struggled getting my post to show up on the module wordpress, to now where I have received praise from my lecturers for my posts, shows how I have improved throughout the module.


(Source: Twitter)

The PowerPoint presentation below further elaborates on what I have learnt within this module, and the skills I have gained.

(Powerpoint created by me)

How has my digital presence changed?

Living in the digital age requires a whole new range of skills and comes with its benefits, but also hindrances. Undertaking this module really reminded of the complications associated with the web. It highlighted how useful the Internet can be in terms of sharing knowledge, but also the issues that come with the ease of sharing in the digital age.

One particular issue that I found of importance during this module was the reviewing of my online presence and identity, displayed through my social media accounts. Particularly in a time of finding employment, this is extremely key. The video below shows the changes I have made to my profiles throughout this module.

(Video created by me)

The skills that I have gained throughout this module are skills that benefit me in all realms of life. I’d like to thank the lecturers and other students who commented on my blogs, for helping me improve and create an overall positive experience with the module.

What’s in store for the future?

I intend to continue working on my Linkedin profile, to further improve my profile and engage with others to build my online networks. I will strive to be less passive online, and contribute in online communities. I will also continue to blog and create new forms of media, as it is something I thoroughly enjoyed.

Word count: 500



Reflection: Welcome to the free for all

Topic 4 and 5 have particularly highlighted the importance of education, and how the benefits of access of knowledge trumps all other potential disadvantages. I have created a prezi containing the main points explaining why education is imperative, hence acting as the justification for why I consider Open Access to be paramount, despite the negatives curtailed for content creators.

Image result for poor students

From reading the posts written by fellow students on the module, it becomes apparent that despite entailing both the positives and negatives of Open Access, there is general consensus on the supporting of total Open Access. It is questionable however how much bias influences our writing. Being poor students, it is of course understandable that we are supporters of Open Access, however perhaps we lack understanding of the other side. This is something that is uncontrollable, however our self influence must be recognised and balanced arguments should be created.

Within my post, Will questioned who should take control with raising the issue of Open Access, whilst this should be the responsibility of everyone, students and scholars are particularly key in facilitating the change – these are the groups which are most influenced by it, therefore must be the ones to campaign for change and awareness.

This week’s post was particularly interesting in seeing the different spheres of Open Access, and its influence outside the solely academic world – something I would have not considered without reading the posts of others. Many of the posts made reference to the access of music, and provided evidence of celebrities whose success had both benefited and been hindered through Open Access. This approach helped simplify the concept of Open Access to those who perhaps would not understand it from a purely academic perspective – something I would strive to incorporate if I were to rewrite the post.

Word count: 302

See my comments on Gus’ and Arun’s posts

NOTE: my comment is still awaiting moderation, therefore I have provided a screenshot to display my comment



  • GEM Report. 2011, Education Counts: Towards the Millennium Development Goals, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, December 13].
  • Gov. 2013, The Benefits of Higher Education Participation for Individuals and Society: key findings and reports “The Quadrants”, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, December 13].

Welcome to the free for all

Have you ever tried to find information for your essay, and found an article that looks like the article that would answer all your questions, only to discover that you cannot access it.  This has happened to me countless times and it’s pretty frustrating. Wouldn’t it be ideal to just have access to everything? What if I told you this utopia could be possible through ‘Open Access’?

What is Open Access?

Journal articles are often restricted, requiring subscription via your institution to read particular articles. For this reason, many scholars are advocates of Open Access. Open Access refers to free, immediate, online, available research articles with re-use rights allowing anyone in the world to access the content (PHD Comics, 2012)


(Image created by me)

Open Access can be disseminated in multiple ways as exemplified in this graphic (Chase, 2016)


Open Access in Reality:

You would expect digitisation to decrease the price of journal articles as the price of printing has been eliminated and dissemination has been eased. However, in reality journal prices have increased by over 250% in the past 30 years, with the average price for journal subscriptions being $1000 per year (PHD Comics, 2012). The price of journal articles have risen 4 times faster than inflation since 1986 (Hornswoggle, 2013). In fact, Lepitak (2013) predicts that 90% of content online will be held behind a paywall, showing how Open Access will only travel further and further from reach.

Why is Open Access not the norm?

“Education is a matter of sharing” – Wiley et al. 2012.

Theoretically Open Access is a great idea as it allows spread of knowledge, but why is it not fully implemented in reality?

This video outlines the positives and negatives of Open Access, with the negatives for content producers acting as reasons for lack of wide-spread implementation.

(Video created by me)

What will the future of Open Access be?

Whilst the disincentives to content producers is recognised, it can be argued that since there is the ability to freely share information, there is also moral and ethical obligation to act upon this (Wiley et al. 2012), as discussed in Topic 4.

Open Access facilitates spread of education and knowledge, allowing for existing knowledge to then be built upon to further education. In my view, this makes Open Access an important issue to contest for. Hence, the positives of Open Access must be emphasised. The issue must be put into the broader conversation, in the eyes of public debate, to make education more affordable and accessible (ibid.).

Word count: 406



Reflection: Digital FOMO is a very real thing

Topic 4 discussed the breadth of ethical issues raised in the digital world. It demonstrates that the freedom exerted by the internet can also pose many issues.


I focused upon the digital divide, and the ethical issues associated. As a geographer, the concept of the digital divide is not new to me, however it was interesting to see how the term had evolved, from once being the lack of internet (as learnt in GCSE), to differences in quality of access, and ability to utilise technology (Wiedor, 2012). This difference of definition in so few years demonstrates how quickly technology and access to technology evolves. It evidences that the digital divide is not disappearing but changing, it will remain an issue even when there is universal access to technology, this highlights the importance of the issue.

Tobie’s comment mentioned his digital FOMO when travelling. Previously I had not considered this topic as very relatable to me, however his comment highlighted the issues that I’ve faced from the digital divide. An example was my travelling to China, where Internet access is limited, and even when attainable is restricted due to censorship. This led to further questions of ethics related to internet censorship as it denies access to certain knowledge. Even when I was in China, it was hard to know what was going on back home, with no access to Google, Facebook, YouTube  etc.  Upon considering this I googled further into the issue and found this article by Brian (2013). This highlights the impediment of freedom of speech due to censorship.

Tom further questioned whether disconnect of technology could benefit groups. This was an interesting concept as there is often criticism of constant use of the internet. This graphic shows the negatives of the internet (Alfredo, 2012). Consideration of these negatives highlights how appropriate use of the internet is needed to reap the positives.

See my comments on Tobie and Chris’ blogs

Word count: 312


Digital FOMO is a very real thing

FOMO. The fear that if you miss a party or event you will miss out on something great.” (Urban dictionary, 2016)

FOMO is something I’m sure has been experienced by everyone. Often it is the case that you perceive to be missing out on something great, but this may not be the reality.

Now imagine the level of FOMO that is experienced from people who lack internet access. Is this fear realistic, or is it simply perceived?

Living in the developing world, often the matter of the digital divide is forgotten. Lack of Internet is a persisting issue, with 60% of the world’s population forecasted to be left offline by the end of 2013 (Kelion, 2013).

The graphic below relates to the Digital Divide, defined as “The Existence of gaps in society between those who use technology and those who don’t” (Ball, 2011, p. 56)


(Image created by me)

This video outlines the reasoning behind the Digital Divide, and how the term has evolved over time

(Video created by me)

So the question poses, do people who lack internet access miss out in reality?

Knight (2012) outlines how differences in access can lead to differing views of inclusion and exclusion – the issue of exclusion being unethical. He further discusses how it can hinder chances of employment and education (ibid.)

With regards to education, even the term FOMO, would people who lack internet access know this term? This shows the realm of knowledge  that those who lack internet access are missing. This relates to Topic 1, which discussed the benefits of social learning.

In Topic 3 I highlighted the prevalence of social recruiting. Further emphasising this, 80% of Fortune companies post job applications online only (Furlong, 2014)- leaving those who lack internet access fewer opportunities for employment. Adults who lack computer skills to further their application and build upon job skills are marginalised within the employment sector (ibid.). 50% of today’s jobs require technology skills, such as basic Microsoft skills (ibid.) – people lacking these miss employment opportunities, and fail to move out of their lower class.

The issue of exclusion is not the most prominent ethical issue, especially when contesting against issues of identity theft, as discussed in Kleinman’s article (2015), or lack of privacy as exemplified by Greenwald’s video (2014). However, its importance is depicted by the repercussions it has on people’s lives. It results in lack of ability to escape social class, social class being the issue that leads them to being losers of the digital divide in the first place.

References (including those used for creation of graphics):


Reflection: Be found, and then be great


This weeks topic highlighted points that I had not previously considered about my online presence, and encouraged me to streamline my accounts to maintain professional authenticity. The article regarding Justine accentuated just how careful you must be with social media. As discussed on Davina’s post, I consider this to be  something that we are all aware of, but perhaps in reality do not think this incident would occur therefore aren’t as careful as we should be.

I particularly enjoyed Zac’s post due how down to earth and relatable it was. Tobie took a similar approach by referencing current affairs to draw people into his blog. I consider these writing styles to be very authentic, showing their personalities. This made for an easier and more interesting read. The quantity of comments on their posts highlights how appreciated authenticity is, even  just within the readers of this module.

It was interesting to see everyone’s different take on why authenticity is important, and the different ways in which you can maintain professional authenticity online. This video as shown on Nikhil’s blog particularly resonated with me, highlighting the importance of online branding and making yourself stand out on Google searches to draw in employers.


My blog post mentioned the skills blogging demonstrates and how this would appeal to employers. Will made a great point, questioning whether  different platforms demonstrate different skills and hence  enforce different impressions. I had not previously considered how accounts such as my Instagram could demonstrate skills, due to the lack of academia it involves. However, upon reflection I realise there are skills that it demonstrates – namely your creative and artistic side, something that would not be demonstrated through other mediums, or elaborated upon in your CV. I also considered Linkedin and Facebook, with the features to build relationships and communities. Dominique’s article (2016) further explains important skills that can be demonstrated through social media

Click here for my comments on Zac and Davina’s blogs


BBC News. 2013, Job hunting: How to promote yourself online, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, November 17].

Jackson, D. 2016, 13 Must Have Social Media Skills, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, November 17].

Lo, I. 2013, Professional Online Profile, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, November 17]


“Be found, and then be great!”

Have your parents or tech savvy grandparents tried to add you on Facebook but you’ve declined because you don’t want them to see your profile? Now what if employers, who determine your future, are scrutinising your online personality, which in turn may skew your chances of recruitment?


(Created by me, statistics)

We are the millennial generation, bringing new culture to the workforce (Tapscott, 2014). With our increasing online presence, we introduce different forms of recruitment and screening.

Topic 2 discussed the issues lack of anonymity can generate for employment. Another example of this is Ronson’s article (2015) about Justine, who lost her job due to a tweet.

But it’s not all bad! Through utilising your social media in the right way, you can benefit from your online presence.

Your online profiles can help sell you. Whilst traditional resumes are ‘dry’, online profiles allow expression of personality in an interesting way (Parcells, 2014). Your online identity acts as an electronic CV (Carruthers, 2012), employers are reported to spend “ten seconds on a CV”, so you need other ways to market yourself (Harris, 2014)

Why is authenticity important?

This video expresses the importance of authenticity. It emphasises that employers are looking for people that they want to work with. Parcell’s article (2014) posited that a lot of companies use an ‘Airport test’ to evaluate candidates: testing if the candidate is someone they’d want to spend time with at an airport layover. Use the internet to promote yourself in a way to make yourself stand out and be a desirable employee. Show your personality, passions and differentiate yourself (BBC, 2013).

How do you ensure authenticity?

Authenticity is the degree to which your online profile reflects your identity (Ramperseed, 2009).  The key to authenticity is consistency! Create your personal brand and display it over multiple platforms (BBC, 2013) to make your ‘googeable self’ evidently authentic and familiar.


(Created by me)

Different social media websites provide differing levels of authenticity through the amount of information required for your profile (Lander and Schmidt, 2016). Linkedin shows an authentic view of your identity, providing objectively verifiable information with the function for others to endorse your skills (ibid.). Use websites that prove authenticity.

Blogging is an innovative way to portray your authentic identity. It allows for passions and enthusiasm to be shown, exemplifies ability to dedicate yourself to a task, shows creativity and how you are different (The Employable, 2016). Employers want people who demonstrate these skills!

Your authentic identity isn’t just shown through words. It’s built through connections, (Rampersad, 2009), things you’ve liked and followed, building of networks and contributions – these are ways of proving your passions and authenticity (IE, 2014).

Word count: 419


  1. Tapscott, D. 2014, Five ways talent management must change, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, November 7].
  2. The Employable, How blogging can get you a job, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, November 7].
  3. BBC News. 2013, Job hunting: How to promote yourself online, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, November 7].
  4. Ronson, J. 2015, How One Stupid Tweet Blew Up Justine Sacco’s Life, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, November 7].
  5. Harris, L. 2014, Using Social Media in your Job Search, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, November 7].
  6. Carruthers, R. 2012, Managing Your Digital Footprint, Online, Available:  [accessed 2016, November 7].
  7. Nyman, M. 2014, Curating your Online Profile, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, November 10].
  8. Landers, R. N. and Schmidt, G. B. 2016, Social Media in Employee Selection and Recruitment, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, November 10].
  9. Rampersad, H. K. 2009, Authentic personal Branding, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, November 2016].
  10. Parcells, N. 2014, How to Create a Killer Online Professional Profile, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, November 10].
  11. IE University, 2014, Be found, and then be great!, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, November 10].
  12. Kane, G. C.,  Alavi, M.,  Labianca, G., and Borgatti, S. 2014, ‘Wha’ts Different about Social Media Networks? A framework and Research Agenda’, Mis Quarterly, (38:1), pp. 275-304.

Statistics for graphic: Jobvite, 2014, Social recruiting Survey, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, November 10].

Reflection: Who do you think I am?

11351636_842277092565939_1967656368_nTopic two discussed the concept of multiple identities online. This is a topic of interest for me particularly now that I am job searching and am more aware of the identity in which I am portraying online. Something which I had expressed in my blog was the issue of needing to stay professional even on personal accounts. Emma’s comment highlighted the question of whether everyone needs to do this, or whether we as students are more aware. This was thought provoking as I reinforced the idea of multiple identities having different implications on different groups of people, leaving some more aware of their social presence than others.

Reading Hei Lam’s blog regarding authenticity, then Gus’ article referring to how many employers screen candidates’ profiles made me consider my own online personalities more. Recently, changes were made to my own online profiles as I began applying for jobs, I began to tweak what could be seen and the things I would say. This then made me question whether tweaking my online personality to one that would be desirable for employers could be considered as decreasing my authenticity.

Reading others’ blog posts and the constant references of the TV show Catfish reminded me of just how relevant determining online authenticity is in everyday life. It bought to light the increasing ease of fraud in modern society, and how careful we must be, particularly as online services such as money transfers are increasing.

As well as learning about the positives and negatives associated with multiple identities this week, I have also learnt about how effective media is in blog posts. The media used by others acted eased my understanding of their points. On my blog I was able to use media to present my ideas in a more innovative and captivating way, something I will endeavour to expand in my future posts.

Who do you think I am?

Peter Steiner’s cartoon depicts the separation between real life and the old web (Krotoski, 2012), but does this distinction still exist today?

Virtual networks were developed in the early 60s. During this time users took a more passive role of simply accessing and consume resources (Costa and Torres, 2011). The previous decade has seen a shift of the role of users within the web, now taking a role of increased interaction through social networking and participation (ibid.)

The web is changing and anonymity is becoming increasingly harder to achieve. A digital presence makes it almost impossible not to have a digital footprint, with websites and apps often only allow use through the creation of an account

“Anonymity is becoming quite a luxury even for the common citizen”

Every time a new account is opened, a fragment of your digital identity is revealed (ibid.), leaving different breadcrumbs of your persona (Chamarro-Premuzic, 2015). People may want to control what is seen of them in different social contexts; hence different accounts may portray different online identities (Vronay), hence creating multiple online identities.

Through researching this topic, I gained interest in my own online identities, and the way in which I am portrayed on the web.

Is there an issue with having multiple identities on the Web?

Having multiple identities online can be considered as positive, due to the ability to control what is seen of you in different social contexts. For example, you want your Facebook friends to have the ability to stay connected to you, through seeing your photos and updates. However, using another website such as Linkedin shows another side to your identity, allowing those to see your professional side and achievements. Multiple online identities allow separation of these two worlds.

However, as easily as I googled myself to find results, others can also do the same. Users have multiple reasons for using the web, both in the personal and professional sphere. Whilst you may have a personal account, it is important to keep it professional, as future employers could Google you as I have myself ( Digital identity management is important, as you can be socially and culturally judged based on your online presence (Coasta and Torres, 2011).

Having an online identity allows people to redefine themselves, and separate themselves from reality (Longair). People can abuse this freedom and create an alias (ibid.), this lacks guarantee between someone’s online identity and real life identity. This creates issues of deception, as depicted by MTVs show Catfish.


7 Steps to Building Your Online Identity, [Online], 2010, Available: [accessed 2016, October 25].

Krotoski, A. 2012, Online identity: is  authenticity or anonymity more important?, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, October 25].

Costa, C. and Torres, R. 2011, ‘To be or not to be, the importance of Digital Identity in the networked society’, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, October 25].

Vronay, D. The Online Identity Crisis, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, October 25].

Longair, R.Social Indentities; Online Versus Real-Life, [Online], Available: [accessed 2016, October 25].

Chamorro-Premuzic, T. 2015, How different are your online and offline personalities?, Online, Available: [accessed 2016, October 25].

Online vs. Offline Self: Who is the Real You?, [Online], 2016, Available: [accessed 2016, October 25].

Reflection: So you think you’re a Digital Resident?

Fire & Ice

Topic one was of particular interest as I had little previous knowledge about Digital Residents and Visitors, however through the reading of academic work and blog posts of my peers, I can now consider myself well versed in the area.

Through reading the blog posts of others I was able to understand the terms in a more simplified and accessible manner than that of academic text. It was insightful to see the alternate views in terms of where people placed themselves along the continuum and whether they agreed with the terms Prensky had developed. Will even went as far as to include another term in which he considered of importance, opening my eyes to something I had not previously considered.

Through the feedback on my post via comments, I am able to identify some flaws in my post, as well as factors that have been well received. An issue that I will work on in my next post is making it less ‘clinical’ through shorter, easier to read paragraphs, and more engaging graphics aesthetically wise. This will make my post more accessible to wider audiences

Hei Lam and Arun’s comments were particularly helpful in developing on my blog post, and opening me up to further ideas I had not previously considered. Arun suggested referencing particular websites where social learning is already used, and through reflection I was able to think of many examples I have used in the classroom previously. The Student Room acts as an example in which collaborative learning is used through the conversing of the global community; adding this as an example in my post could further emphasise my point.

Hei Lam suggested considering the relationship between technical capability and the Nature vs Nurture debate – this is not something I had previously considered, hence her comment helped widen my perspective on how many factors influence whether you are a Digital Resident or Visitor.

Links to my comments: