Social Media in Business

Keeping a blog post about the uses of social media in business to 500 words is no easy task, as there are just so many social media forums that could be included into the discussion,not to mention an equally large variety of ways a business could choose to use them.  So, what do you do when there is more to say than a word count will allow? Well, the solution is to narrow your topic down to a manageable amount acknowledging that there is so much more that could have been added, but, due to the confines of your word count you have had to be selective about what you discuss.  Of course to do this those things you decide to discuss needs to be cohesive. To provide cohesion in a case like social media in business that means discussing social media in relation to a business, and as I am currently in the business of tertiary study I will be discussing social media in the business of delivering education.

I have come to learn that the place of social media in education has been increasing at all levels. While social media is usually thought of as available to everyone that wishes to participate often business makes use of closed social media to communicate with selected persons. In education most social media is closed available to participants by either invitation or through having your application to join accepted. My grandsons class shares his learning experiences with parents and caregivers through a class blog, and parents and caregivers can comment and add to the class conversation. The children follow their blog and are very excited to read the feedback. My younger grandson’s day care communicates about his activities through a website which provides each child with a personal page about their activities, and a class page open to all. These are both examples of closed social media.

At the tertiary level social media use becomes more prevalent. Either by the University itself or by associated groups. For example Massey University has eight facebook pages available when doing a facebook search of the university for its various schools and campus’s. More unofficial sites are available set up for a variety of purposes such as trading textbooks, or finding accommodation. Which raises an important point, social media users can easily find that their forums have been hijacked by others.  If you have ever had your facebook page hacked and had an embarrassing post placed on your facebook page you have been ‘fraped’ and know what I’m talking about.  Social media can be great for keeping in touch, ensuring you keep people informed, or to start social campaigns for say ‘bringing back the chocoade biscuit.’

Unfortunately social media can have a more sinister side. School yard bullying following children home via bullying through texts, facebook pages, tweets, Instagram, and other similar sites have had huge detrimental effects on school children. So while open social media can be very useful, the problem exists with difficulties managing these renegades that orchestrate social hate campaigns, which have been known to have deadly consequences. Even with careful monitoring there is no way to stop renegade posts until after the fact. Often by the time it has been found and taken down the offending material may have gone viral. Noted is the school yard fights that have been downloaded onto You Tube. It is clear that the use of social media in schools has a valuable place, and there is plenty of scope to increase its uses, but, it is also clear that social media can cause many problems. The answers to these problems is yet to be found.


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