Monday, October 7, 2013

Who teaches "Gen Y / Gen Z" the Social Media basics? [UBC Post 7]

Over the recent past, I've had the opportunity to interact up close and personal with the Gen Y / Gen Z generation - in schools, colleges, social gathering's. They are a new generation (or The "Digital Natives" as they are popularly known) - For e.g.: The 2 year old's who can play on the iPad, the 5 year old who goes to a school where there is a "Touch Lab", the 8 year old who is ever so active on FaceBook, the 12 year old who has 10K+ Twitter followers and the last one I should mention - The yet to be born baby who already had a Google account, Twitter account and FaceBook account!

They are omnipresent! And I am glad to see the. After all, they are the next generation and the sooner they embrace technology, the better. After all, TECHNOLOGY is the GAME-CHANGER of the future

But during interactions, interestingly a lot of them confessed to Social Media Blunders or Social Media Disasters (Of course does not include the yet-to-be-born baby and the 2 year old, They can't speak properly yet, or they speak in a language I can't understand ;)
Example 1 : A 12 year old shared his address on FaceBook, and got into trouble
Example 2 : A 8 year old shared her contact number as part of her Twitter profile, and got into trouble
Example 3 : A 15 years old shared photographs on FaceBook, and got into trouble
Example 4 : A 10 year old tweeted something controversial, and got into trouble
Example 5 : An 5 year old posted a confession on FaceBook, and got into trouble

And I can go on with many more such examples.. But the point is this - It's great that this generation is so active on SOCIAL MEDIA and all that it has to offer!
They think Social, 
They talk Social
They walk Social
They eat Social
They drink Social
They breathe Social
They dream Social
Good for them! Good that the Social Bug is in them, and they learned a lot by themselves...

But what about the things that their peers don't know about Social Media?
But what about the things that even their teachers don't know about Social Media?
But what about the things that their parents don't know about Social Media?

And I am not talking about features, or capabilities, or How-To's, or How to do better, faster..

I am talking about THE SOCIAL MEDIA BASICS with an emphasis on WHAT NOT TO DO on SOCIAL MEDIA?
What NOT to say about yourself?
What NOT to share?
What NOT to do?
Whom NOT To connect with?
When to DISCONNECT from Social Media?

Who teaches the Gen Y / Gen Z the Social Media Basics?
from what I know, no one really! Most learn by experience - By burning their fingers, By seeing others learn the hard way :(

In my honest opinion, it makes complete sense for schools / educational institutes to include Social Media Basics as a part of the School Curriculum (May be some already do, but I'm not aware). Get Social Media Gurus / Experts to talk , to share their learning's, to give insights into possible consequences and impact on life. In the long run, I think it will really make a difference in their lives.

In conclusion, Teach the Gen Y / Gen Z the Social Media Basics, and these are really the basics of LIFE. But someone has to teach it, and they have to learn sometime.. Sooner, the BETTER!

I am also linking this post to the October’s NaBloPoMo
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  1. I agree with you that kids should be taught the basics of social media in the schools. They learn about computers as soon as they enter school. They should also learn valuable tips to keep them safe online. Wonderful blog to bring awareness. ♥

  2. There are probably some adults who could use this, too!

  3. I agree to your post totally...Stopping won't help so why not educate.

  4. Education is key here - if we want the Gen Y and Z to really and truly learn the basics - it needs to be incorporated into their school routine.
    I remember back in 3rd grade in 1990 for me - we were taught Basic and C+ along with general typing skills and when I switched schools in 1993 - computer classes were compulsory so that everyone knew how to operate Apple & IBM computers and learn the correct way to type.
    It makes complete sense that kids from primary school onwards know about social media (come on they have already know about it from their parents, TV, etc) and the correct 'do's and don'ts' with it as well

    1. I agree completely.. They should be taught these lessons very well in school. DONT's are more important than DO's. Nischala

  5. Since kids these days have an easy access to these platform and they use it a lot, it is only sensible to teach them about it, especially, as you also said, what not to do.

  6. I think they should teach basics of safety at school itself just like they teach you how to cross the road. And parents should reenforce them at home. Gone are the days when the teachers used to be against children using social media. Now many use it to share notes and events. It is much easier than school websites!

    1. You can't stop anyone from using Social Media (Kids / Adults) - Better to educate them

  7. Agree completely! It is so important to teach kids about the Dos and Dont's on Social Media rather than banning them when they get into trouble!

    1. Wish someone taught them till they learned it right

  8. Loved this post, given that we simply cannot do anything to ensure that these kids are not exposed to social media in one form or the other, it is extremely critical that we teach them the basics at an age when they can comprehend the same.

    1. That's the point Jairam. I wish schools include it in the curriculum. If students have to clear an exam, that would also be good - IMO, as at least you know that they have learned the lessons. Nischala

  9. This is new. And also a very advanced point of view given that in our society even sex education has not found many takers. Which I do believe is something that needs to be dealt with utmost importance. Perhaps if such things can be driven into the mindset of young parents right from the beginning so that the next gen can at least receive it.


    1. Well, I think Social media education will probably be better received as there is still taboo around the S#X word.Having said that, CBSE has made it mandatory for schools to have these sessions after an age, Now it takes time for translating policy to action and to see results .. Hopefully we'll reach some level of maturity in the education system (sooner than later)where Social Media can be introduced in schools as well. Tx for stopping by

  10. I am also sharing my knowledge to help people so they can now Learn Basics