Facilitating Online/Looking for online community: Social networking platforms

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People creating their own learning... Now millions of people are able to easily build detailed accounts of their lives, developing rich online identities, made possible by free, web based social networking software. . The software automatically links people around the world who express similar interests – thus offering a network. With everyone in the network writing, linking, photographing, videoing.. creating.. their experiences, the people connected to the network learn from one another, swapping stories and resources... remixing stories and resources. Image CC By Leigh Blackall


Social networking platforms are web services that technically facilitate social networking and community development. From Facebook to Linkedin, each social networking platform has slightly different functionality and social phenomenon. In this topic we will try out the Online Facilitators Grou.ps network, and review several other social networking platforms like it.

To do

1. Join the Online Facilitators network on Grou.ps and help generate activity by creating a strong profile page, observing and interacting with other members.

3. Attend a meeting (TBA) where we discuss the features of other social networking platforms, and become administrators of the Grou.ps network so we can view the admin features of this particular platform.

4. Write up a summary of social networking platforms and include ideas on how you think facilitation would work in these contexts.

4. Finalise preparations for your facilitated event at the course mini conference

Extra resources

  • Apophenia: The Economist Debate on Social "Networking" - Given that MySpace and Facebook are ubiquitous, can social networking be defined as the "collective power of community to help inform perspectives that would not be unilaterally formed" or is it simply a distraction for students?
  • QUT News Schools' Web 2.0 ban contributes to social exclusion - Queensland University of Technology media and communication PhD candidate Tanya Notley, from the Creative Industries Faculty, said social networking sites such as MySpace, Bebo and Facebook were blocked on all Queensland State school computers, denying many students without home internet access use of these sites to learn and participate in an increasingly networked society.
  • Networks, Connections and Community: Learning with Social Software by Val Evans 2007.
  • Young People and Social Networking Services The project is designed to investigate how social networking services can and are being used to support personalised formal and informal learning by young people in schools and colleges.