Diddit and other online badness

I’ve come across Diddit.com which is suggested to be the next big thing for adventure junkies and others who like to brag. Those in the ‘know’ are claiming it’s going to be the next Facebook. Basically people can post up ‘brags’ or diddits about things they’ve done and also about things they want to do (wanna dos). They can also write stories. I think it’s very appealing and I get the idea of it. I think it would be great to have a SocialLearn strand to this and it definitely has a nice social dimension to it.

I’ve read two articles recently about the perils of online environments. The most recent by Catherin Blythe  in the Independent. These things are interesting to read and interpret but the Indy in particular has been going on a bit of a facebook rant and I’m not sure I agree. I think that online interactions can add to the interactions you have in the real world and enhance peoples lives. They should replace those though and maybe that’s where the problems arise. Online interactions are less passive than watching TV, so you gain something over TV from them. Similarly face to face offer opportunities over those so again you gain a richer interaction. Telephony for example has been around for generations and so we’ve always have a level of remote connectivity.

I feel that the problems are not from technologies themselves but how we use them. I think that we need to develop the correct protocols for new technologies to embed them correctly into our (and others) lives. I can go for periods without using Twitter but when I do use it I value it. My followers number only 50 and are people I either know in real life or would expect to know in real life through work or other means. I don’t have any fantasies about having a huge following and making eclectic friendships online, mainly because I’m very happy with my real world friends and I feel ‘grounded’ with that group. but by virtual interactions enhance that experience and draw me closer to them.

I do however agree that abuse of TV and prolonged passive web browsing could damage peoples ability to correctly make inferences. I think over use of any single media is dangerous – but that’s not down to the media, it’s down to the people.

About willwoods
I'm Head of Learning and Teaching Technologies in the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University.

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