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Friday, July 14, 2017

Snapchat's new location feature



Snapchat, the app which allows users to edit and post videos and images that quickly disappear, has over 150 million people and businesses across the world. In late June of 2017, Snapchat added another feature: Snap Map, which allows other users to see your precise geographic location. Privacy concerns have been raised by parents, educators, and technology experts, among others.

 "I am concerned about what this means for people who use Snapchat and either live in or travel to war torn places."

Victoria Blake, a TSMRI intern, states, "I am concerned about what this means for people who use Snapchat and either live in or travel to war torn places and what this could mean if a terrorist group gets hold of it." Christian Rocha, a recent Tarleton State University graduate, commented, "In all honesty, I don't see the point in it. Why does one need to know where their friends are all the time? There is a lack of privacy in today's society, and this is a prime reason why."

As a story in TheVerge.com states, "Though [the app] mentions sharing your location, it’s vague on what that exactly means. Users might not understand that Snap is posting your location on Snap Map every time you open the app. Not just when you share Snaps to Our Story."

Unlike Facebook, Snapchat merely requires that its users are aged 13 and above. Parents and educators are concerned that teenagers could inadvertently broadcast their whereabouts to Snapchat friends whom they don't know and trust in real life.

Users can opt out of the Snap Map feature by turning on Ghost mode.

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The Texas Social Media Research Institute (TSMRI) is a group of faculty, staff, and students at Tarleton State University with a mission of conducting social media research; sharing social media best practices; and providing social media education for students, non-profit organizations, state agencies, school districts, and higher education institutions.

Contact us:
Texas Social Media Research Institute
Follow Us on Twitter - @TSMRI
Call Us - 254-307-8211
Join Us for Our #TXSocialMedia Weekly Twitter Chats on Thursday Nights at 8pm CDT
texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Social Media Breaks (Pt. 2)


Our first post in this series explored the idea of social media breaks--what are they, exactly, and how do you know if you need one?

This post will explore types of social media breaks and offer tips for you to get the most out of your break.

METHODS
Total Break From Social Media
This is for the kind of person who likes to make a dramatic statement.


via GIPHY

It's all or nothing for this person.  They will have few to no regrets as they hide their smartphone,  upload beautifully created "Goodbye" graphics, and tag their friends.

The upside? If you fall into this category, you are likely to get the most out of your break, particularly if you combine it with travel. You may very well end up relishing your time off and re-discovering the joys of non-electronic hobbies and (gasp!) in-person conversation.

The downside? You'll be dying to post all of your revelations on....social media.  Jot down some notes and create a monster blog post for when  you come back...if you come back.

This kind of break works well for creatives or other people who have big projects they've been procrastinating on. You might discover that Instagram is your favorite platform, and that you're OK with dropping Twitter and/or Facebook, for example.

Image from Pixabay.com

Partial Social Media Break
Although the results may not be as dramatic, this type of break is probably more realistic for most of us.  You can approach it one of two ways.

      A) Take a break from one or more types of social media.
Perhaps you're the type who gets an endorphin rush when someone replies to you on Twitter...and before you know it, you've skipped dinner to dive deep into several political hash tags. Try logging out of your account for a week....or even a day. And don't forget to turn off your notifications. Unless you're a social media manager, chances are good that you'll miss nothing earth-shaking.

       B) Stay on social media, but check it less (once or twice a day versus several times an hour, for example).  You'll experience less noticeable benefits, but this is also a good way to ease into a total break.


TIPS:
1.  Pick a length for your social media break. It can be exact (e.g., 37 days) or approximate (1-2 weeks).

2.  Pick at least one goal not related to social media, and sketch out a rough plan to achieve it. You can accomplish one or two steps towards the goal; don't pressure yourself to do the whole thing in an unrealistic amount of time.

3.  Post reminder notes around your desk, on your phone, or anywhere else helpful.

4. Know your weak spots.  If you check social media automatically, make it more difficult for yourself. Delete your social media applications from your phone. Better yet, turn your phone off completely unless you are making a phone call or answering email (setting aside a pre-determined block of time for these tasks will make it easier). Use a browser extension such as StayFocusd to remind you to stay away.

5.  Reward yourself. Spend the time that normally goes to social media on something you normally "don't have time" for -- calling an old friend, going outside, crafting--whatever it is you've neglected for too long.

6. Don't beat yourself up if you "cheat." It's not black and white, all or nothing. Just keep going.

7.  Enlist the help of others.  Have a buddy who can text you encouragement.  When you are both finished, go out and celebrate.

Have you ever taken a social media break? How did it go? Let us know in the comments below.



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The Texas Social Media Research Institute (TSMRI) is a group of faculty, staff, and students at Tarleton State University with a mission of conducting social media research; sharing social media best practices; and providing social media education for students, non-profit organizations, state agencies, school districts, and higher education institutions.


Contact us:
Texas Social Media Research Institute
Follow Us on Twitter - @TSMRI
Call Us - 254-307-8211
Join Us for Our #TXSocialMedia Weekly Twitter Chats on Thursday Nights at 8pm CDT
texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Should You Take A Social Media Break?



Over the past decade, many articles and books that lament our dwindling attention spans and propensity for multi-tasking have appeared on the scholarly landscape. Popular examples of this genre include Nicolas Carr's The Shallows: What the Internet has been doing to our brains, Sherry Turkle's Alone Together: Why We Expect More From Technology and Less From Each Other and William Powers' Hamlet's Blackberry: Building A Good Life In The Digital Age.

Criticism of the internet, mobile devices, and social media often include the following points:

  •  Hopping from task to task on mobile devices has lessened our attention span. This makes it more difficult to do challenging cognitive tasks that require deep concentration.

  • Staying online for large parts of the day has impaired our ability to communicate effectively with each other in real life. Not only that, it encourages multi-tasking, which is stressful and inefficient, while giving you the illusion of accomplishing more. 

  • Internet and social media content is designed to grab your attention for a few seconds before you move on to the next thing. It favors surface arguments and unchecked facts rather than deep knowledge of a subject.

The second point above is often cited as a reason for people to go on what's called a "digital detox", where they stay completely off-line, including mobile phones. Some might ditch mobile phones but use laptops or desktops as part of their job. Some of these people eliminate only their use of social media for a pre-determined period of time, such a week, a month, or longer. This is often referred to as going on a social media "break", "vacation", or "detox."


The phrase social media break pulls up over 111,000,000 results on Google. Benefits are said to include more free time, and improved relationships with others.  According to Pew Internet Research, in 2015 almost 65% of American adults said they used social media (versus a mere 7% in 2005).

Here's a quick mini-quiz to see if you qualify for a social media break.

     1.  You find out that your electricity is going to be out, starting in 1 hour, for the next day  and a half. Your first thought?

       a.  Are my family members/friends OK?

       b.  What am I going to do about food/heat/air-conditioning?

       c.  Well, that's inconvenient but I guess I'll survive.

       d. No (social media network of your choice)? My life is over.

     2.  You make a new friend. When you ask to friend or follow them on your favorite social media platform, they gently inform you that they are not on any social networks. None, nada, zero, zip, zilch. Your reaction?

       a.  "...."

       b.  That's not funny.

       c. Wow, that's kinda cool. Good for you.

       d.  I could never do that.

If you picked "D" for either 1 or 2, you might be in need of a social media sabbatical.  You can always start small by eliminating one social media network for a day. You might be pleasantly surprised.

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The Texas Social Media Research Institute (TSMRI) is a group of faculty, staff, and students at Tarleton State University with a mission of conducting social media research; sharing social media best practices; and providing social media education for students, non-profit organizations, state agencies, school districts, and higher education institutions.


Contact us:
Texas Social Media Research Institute
Follow Us on Twitter - @TSMRI
Call Us - 254-307-8211
Join Us for Our #TXSocialMedia Weekly Twitter Chats on Thursday Nights at 8pm CDT
texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com

Monday, April 24, 2017

How the Social Media Coach Experience Helped Executive Coach - Aissa Martinez


TSMRI has taught me many of the essential skills I need to land a job. TSMRI is an experience all students in the communications department and the marketing department can benefit from. Not one but a few different ALE credits can be completed through TSMRI as well as getting class credit for an upper level elective. The in-depth social media training we receive can be used in any job market.


TSMRI taught me analytics, marketing, public relations, networking, and professional social media etiquette. Not only did I learn these skills, but I had to opportunity to carry them out on many occasions. I have traveled to many conferences that brought experience and networking. In addition to that, I also got hands on experience with event management and marketing with the planning of the TSMRI annual conference.

Skills Learned While Completing the TSMRI Internship
Networking
How to network
Networking with people from all backgrounds
Marketing
Public Relations
Professionalism
Travel
Multicultural Initiatives
Business and analytics
Small business marketing skills
Higher education
Social media etiquette
Research



Here's the link to the TSMRI Application - http://www.tinyurl.com/TSMRIInternship

My favorite experience was traveling to the Southern States Communication Association conference in South Carolina to share our TSMRI experiences with others. After our presentation there were graduate schools approaching us instead of us approaching them which really shows the power of what we do.


LinkedIn
Here's a link to Aissa's LinkedIn Profile - https://www.linkedin.com/in/aissa-martinez-615b51110

Twitter
Also, follow Aissa on Twitter - @martinezaissa

The Texas Social Media Research Institute (TSMRI) is a group of faculty, staff, and students at Tarleton State University with a mission of conducting social media research; sharing social media best practices; and providing social media education for students, non-profit organizations, state agencies, school districts, and higher education institutions.



Contact us:
Texas Social Media Research Institute
Follow Us on Twitter - @TSMRI
Call Us - 254-307-8211
Join Us for Our #TXSocialMedia Weekly Twitter Chats on Thursday Nights at 8pm CDT
texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com

How the Social Media Coach Experience Helped Executive Coach - Jeff Nwidobie


Jeffery is an engineering student but he also loves social media. One day, a mysterious email appears in his inbox. Now, Jeffery did not know there was a social media research organization on campus. There were many organizations on campus but none of them appealed to Jeff, well up until then. TSMRI was different.



Here's the link to the TSMRI Application - http://www.tinyurl.com/TSMRIInternship

In 5 minutes, he submitted his application and waited. Some days pass by, and then another email, this time not so mysterious. Jeff went in for the interview and was amazed at the exceptional organizational culture he witnessed. That day, Jeff the engineering student decided to be a part of TSMRI. You won't believe what happens next.


Spring break is approaching. Jeff has nothing planned until he gets wind of Dr. Edwards' plan. Study abroad for spring break? That's a first. Wait, on a ship? Even better. It won't cost me a fortune plus I get a scholarship? Sign me up! That year, Jeff and his TSMRI team went on a study abroad cruise. They had fun but no too much of it, they were here to learn.


Later that year, Jeff and his TSMRI family wrote a research paper which they got to present at the National Communications Association convention in Philadelphia. The next year, TSMRI got to tell their study abroad experience at the Southern States Communication Association conference in South Carolina. Jeffery the engineering student loves TSMRI and hopes it becomes the 'Ferrari' of all organizations someday but for now he'll settle for a Tesla.

LinkedIn
Here's a link to Jeff's LinkedIn Profile - https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffnwidobie
Currently, Jeff's is the top Tarleton State University student on LinkedIn.

Twitter
Also, follow Jeff on Twitter - @calme_jeff 

The Texas Social Media Research Institute (TSMRI) is a group of faculty, staff, and students at Tarleton State University with a mission of conducting social media research; sharing social media best practices; and providing social media education for students, non-profit organizations, state agencies, school districts, and higher education institutions.



Contact us:
Texas Social Media Research Institute
Follow Us on Twitter - @TSMRI
Call Us - 254-307-8211
Join Us for Our #TXSocialMedia Weekly Twitter Chats on Thursday Nights at 8pm CDT
texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com

Passionate about Social Media? Want to Start Your Own Business? Become a Social Media Coach with @TSMRI


Tarleton Students - The Texas Social Media Research Institute (@TSMRI) has a few openings for Social Media Coaches. Coaches will learn about social media technologies and how to conduct/research the effectiveness of social media campaigns, present at research conferences, and will have opportunities to study abroad! Interviews - 4/27/17 at Noon.

Here's the link to the application: http://www.tinyurl.com/tsmriinternship/

Through the Social Media Coach Internship, you will gain the following experiences:
- Social Media Analytics Training
- Video Editing Experience
- Social Media Campaigns
- Scheduling Social Media Posts
- Developing Your Own Social Media Research Study
- Presenting at National and Regional Conferences
- Study Abroad Experiences
- Gain Social Media Mentors
- Network with Other Social Media Professionals

If you have any questions, please contact texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com OR send a direct message to @drjtedwards.

Sincerely,

@TSMRI

The Texas Social Media Research Institute (TSMRI) is a group of faculty, staff, and students at Tarleton State University with a mission of conducting social media research; sharing social media best practices; and providing social media education for students, non-profit organizations, state agencies, school districts, and higher education institutions.

Contact us:
Texas Social Media Research Institute
Follow Us on Twitter - @TSMRI
Call Us - 254-307-8211
Join Us for Our #TXSocialMedia Weekly Twitter Chats on Thursday Nights at 8pm CDT
texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Do You Know How Teens and Tweens are Using Popular Social Media Apps?



Recently, we were contacted by Michaela, a digital coach from Xooloo, about an article she wrote about teens and digital habits. This article was very interesting and we wanted to share with all of our readers.

Here were some key highlights from the article:
- Over 90% of teens (ages 13-17) access the internet each day.
- When teens are completing their homework assignments, many of them perform many functions at one time.

*In addition, the article shares digital app usage tips for parents of tweens and teens!

Check out their article here - https://www.xooloo.com/social-media-apps-teens-tweens-using/

About TSMRI - The Texas Social Media Research Institute (TSMRI) is a group of faculty, staff, and students at Tarleton State University with a mission of conducting social media research; sharing social media best practices; and providing social media education for students, non-profit organizations, state agencies, school districts, and higher education institutions.

Contact us:
Texas Social Media Research Institute
Follow Us on Twitter - @TSMRI
Call Us - 254-307-8211
Join Us for Our #TXSocialMedia Weekly Twitter Chats on Thursday Nights at 8pm CDT
texassocialmediaresearch@gmail.com
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