Social Media for Social Purpose There is no doubting that social media has had a massive impact on society in general. How often do you see people walking along, heads down, looking at their phones, tweeting and Facebooking whilst they walk? Or those who watch TV programmes, and talk to complete strangers on Twitter or Facebook about their favourite TV show as it happens. Oppressed societies are demanding more freedom and communicating with each other via social media. Businesses are using it to market themselves and to engage with their fans and followers, and more and more people are moving online every day, using Pinterest, Google Plus, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Does social media have a positive or negative effect on society?

Is the impact positive or negative in your view? I can see both positive and negative. I’ve seen companies win new business through social media, watched old friends re-unite after many years, and even meet life partners! But I’ve seen it bring out the worst in people too, the bullying that goes on online, the pretence that life is perfect from individuals, seemingly to boost self-esteem when you know it’s not fact, and how it makes others feel inferior, the way that people say things behind the apparent “safety” of a screen that they would never say aloud or face to face. The fact that people can go back and read cruel comments time and again, and beat themselves up over them. For sure, social media has definitely had an impact.

Young people can’t write properly due to social media….. really?

We hear of young people who supposedly can’t put together a sentence face to face, or write grammatically correctly, and resort to text speak, who are accused of losing their “social skills” because all they do is engage online. Has online life moved on so much that we should forget grammar and spelling in the English language, and accept that we can understand what is being said? Again, in my view, if the situation is social, and the audience is controlled, it’s not so important, but what if you’re looking for work? Trust me, LOTS of potential employers do due diligence on prospective employees and check out their social media presence prior to either interview or employment. Are there social media skeletons/poor grammar/spelling/ bad language lingering on your profiles that you wouldn’t want people to see now? I agree, that there are and have been many negative outcomes from social media, but when used correctly and responsibly, social media CAN actually deliver far more benefit than harm. With this in mind, we have chosen to partner with Agency East to deliver a series of programmes and workshops aimed at young people, the unemployed and community groups, to improve understanding of digital footprints, how social media can be used positively in social situations for positive outcomes. AELogo-copy

Projects to use the positive effects of social media to improve aspirations and employability

One such project is Brand Academy with Social Media, where young people are taken through a creative branding exercise, this helps them identify who they are, the messages that they want to convey, and shows them how digital footprints can impact on those messages and what they want the world to see about them. We then lead highly interactive workshops to show how social media and new online methods (such as blogging or online CV’s) can be used to network to find employment opportunities through mediums such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube which they use almost daily. If you would like to learn more about how we can help you achieve objectives of raising aspiration levels, increasing employability skills, engaging with young people, reaching hard to reach members of the community or solving community problems, please contact either Caroline or Lucy: Caroline: 01375 659209 ([email protected])  Lucy: 01375 888150 ([email protected])  ]]>