Adiós UOSM2008


I chose the ‘Living and Working on the Web’ module because I wanted to do something different from the context of my degree and doing something online-based in the digital era in which we now live really appealed to me. I have learnt so much about various Internet-related issues and developed opinions from my own research and other blogs to establish my own stance on them. I furthered my creativity skills by using various platforms to enhance my blog, including incorporating elements aside from YouTube and gifs to things I had never done before, such as making infographics, which I particularly enjoyed, and creating a PowToon video, which I had never even heard of before. From the feedback after each topic, I feel like I took the critique on board and improved every time…except for the whole word count thing, I guess I just have a lot to say.

Here’s my end of module self-test to compare the change in my online skills since the start of the module:

Screen Shot 2016-05-22 at 13.53.15

I think these skills improved because the module encouraged me to go beyond what I was already doing online, whether it were by engaging more with others, using alternative sources or blogging through new creative methods. This module helped me fall back in love with Twitter as I had used it nearly everyday since I was 17, and then in my second year I stopped using it as much, but now I am back to using it frequently again which I am very pleased about.

I am definitely a lot more cautious now with regards to what I post on social media purely based on what I learnt on this module, and I have altered some security settings because of the topic on employability, however I have made my Instagram public now to feature on my blog so I’m not sure if this a step backwards or not!

My favourite post had to be Topic 4, ‘Tweeting Your Business’ because I am very passionate about freedom of speech and I found the background reading and cases of dismissal because of misconduct online to be extremely interesting. It was also the first time I used PowToon for my reflective summary.

I have learnt how to build my online profile and awareness using different mediums, and how to use blogs/social media to promote and market myself online, which were my aims for this module. You can view my synopsis of my UOSM2008 journey via Prezi here.

I want to continue blogging after graduating and I believe now that I will, because I have enjoyed the creative side as well as the discussion and analysis, however I will probably choose to blog more about my personal areas of interest and the industry I aspire to work in. Oh yeah, and without a word limit.large-1

Thanks #UOSM2008, adiós.




Image Sources:


Topic 5: Open Access Online

Open access is concerned with online research that is available for anyone to use since it is free of financial restrictions and is fully available for re-use. Because of this however, it is a highly debated topic.


Like anything, open access has its advantages and disadvantages, which you can see in the infographic I made below:

and cons of oa online

At first I thought I would be against Open Access (OA) because I could see the benefits for everyone but the authors, who would ultimately have to pay for the publication costs.

“There’s no such thing as a free journal. It costs money.”

But then I found out that there is an increase in Government funding for research which would cover those costs, so even though the authors wouldn’t be paid for their articles, they would still receive recognition through citations, and isn’t that the main aim of education? To spread knowledge over receiving financial reward? The costs of OA are justified, because their expenditures with regards to marketing, recruitment and management are rising, so to charge for publication to me, seems fair, especially given that OA contributes to benefitting science and research due to its ‘free for all’ nature, enhancing availability and therefore further developments in research.

The average annual price of journal subscriptions is thousands of pounds, which isn’t surprising seeing as when I haven’t had access to an article, its price is usually between £30 and £100. I have never paid for an article I didn’t already have access to through OA or the University subscriptions because of not only its cost, but also because it may not even turn out to be relevant, given that abstracts don’t always give you all the information you need, and because there are no refunds when it comes to paying for journal articles. This seems equally ridiculous given that the Government and other organisations typically fund research for years, and then it doesn’t even get used because the average person cannot afford to pay for the chance that the £30 article may be relevant, let alone thousands of pounds per year for a subscription to a journal that hasn’t even produced the content it publishes. This is one of the reasons why I am pro OA, however it does make me question my University fees – if part of my nine grand a year is to contribute towards journal subscriptions, if OA came into full effect and was completely accepted by higher education, I would expect to pay less to attend uni, especially if an increasing amount of research is available through OA and if OA is the future, which it is likely to be.

In my opinion, OA is the future for journal articles, so it’s better for researchers to get on board rather than protest it, because then they run the risk of being left behind and not reaping its benefits for education as a whole and for themselves.

Here’s a quick video by the highly accredited publication Wiley, and why they support OA:


BROWN, A. 2012, ‘Open Access: Why Academic Publishers still add value’, [online], Available: [Accessed 07.05.2016].

Edanz Editing, 2013, ‘Advantages and Disadvantages of Open Access’, [online], Available: [Accessed 07.05.2016].

Open Access, ‘Pros and Cons’, [online], Available: [Accessed 07.05.2016].

WEXLER, E. 2015, ‘What Open-Access Publishing Actually Costs’, [online], Available: [Accessed 07.05.2016].

YouTube 2014, ‘Understanding Open Access’, [online], Available: [Accessed 07.05.2016].

Topic 4: Reflective Summary

This week I decided to summarize my thoughts on the topic of ethics online via PowToon, which you can check out below.

You can find my comments on other blog posts here:

Topic 4: Tweeting your Business

Sometimes, not minding your own business online can affect your business in real life.

There are a number of cases where an individual’s social media has gotten them into trouble at work, and in some instances, even fired, which raises the debate on freedom of speech online and self-censorship.

Where do we draw the line between expressing what we want to say and holding ourselves back because our opinions, jokes or thoughts might cause offence to an unknown reader out in cyberspace and risk our livelihood? And is it fair to be fired for something that was done outside of the workplace?

Some would argue, that yes, in fact it is.

It has been drilled into me since my school days that when I would leave the school premises, I was still a representative of my school; not just because I was still in my uniform and in town after the school day had ended, but because I was a member of that organisation. To me, the same applies to where I have worked because I do take care with how I conduct myself because I myself, and consequently my behaviour, are attributed to my employer, regardless of where I am physically or digitally.

For example, Erica Escalante was fired from her internship for a racist tweet that was brought to the attention of her employer by other Twitter users. I support her dismissal in this case because it was an inexcusable, unprovoked and derogatory tweet, despite her intention to be that of a joke.

There also are examples of complete idiocy – tweeting about hating your job/boss and being let go because of it to me is simple logic: “You don’t want to work here, we’ll make that happen.”

However, there are some occasions where people read into tweets almost seeking something to cause them offence, when that was not intended or implied at all, causing the accused to lose their job.

Screen Shot 2016-04-24 at 17.15.42


Take for instance Damian Goddard, a sports broadcaster who was fired for sharing his political and religious opinion (that had nothing to do with sports) on Twitter. In my opinion, Goddard’s tweet was by no means offensive because it incurred no hateful vocabulary and was not targeted at anyone or any group: He was exercising his right to speak his mind in a polite manner. Regardless, he was fired. But is it really okay to fire people over a differing opinion?

It can be hard to decipher tone online which is why there are many interpretations of one message, but at the same time people tend to be over-sensitive, to the point where people don’t want to discuss anything out of fear of being hated and slated online and therefore succumb to self-censorship, which is an issue in itself because it alludes to the notion of freedom of speech diminishing, as people who hold a minority opinion feel as if they are not allowed to say it.

I think it comes down to being conscious and aware of the decisions we make online and being accountable for our actions just as we would be offline: If you don’t think it would go down too well if you said what you wanted to tweet in the office because it doesn’t align with your company’s morals, or you wouldn’t want your mother or children to read what you wrote because it’s too explicit, don’t tweet it. And if you did, delete it.

There are consequences for every action and in the age of the ever permanent and unforgiving digital footprint, you are responsible for how you represent yourself and your employer.

Have a look at this video to see what members of the public think about freedom of speech online and censorship:




Alexander, R. (2015) ‘You just published an offensive tweet to your company’s timeline, no what?’,  [Accessed 24.04.2016].

Mejia, L. (2015) ‘A girl got fired from her new pizza place job before she even started – because of a tweet’,–because-of-a-tweet-2015-2?IR=T  [Accessed 24.04.2016].

Revis, L. (2015) ‘Social Media & Censorship: Freedom of Expression and Risk’,  [Accessed 24.04.2016].

Sebastian, M. (2015) ‘College Student Loses Internship Over Incredibly Racist Tweet’,  [Accessed 24.04.2016].

Weei (2011) ‘Mashup: Sportscaster fired over tweet’,  [Accessed 24.04.2016].

Topic 3: Reflective Summary

Before researching this topic, I hadn’t considered how useful it could be to have a blog in helping with the job hunt process and I agreed with Hayley‘s post when she said that having a blog was also another way to enhance authenticity online. I had touched upon how blogging contributes positively to a digital footprint, but I hadn’t taken into account that it makes you appear more authentic also as it shows potential employers that you have constructive ideas to contribute and emphasises your personality, so you come across more personable online as it allows you to be creative and express yourself. I had noted that engaging online through Twitter and LinkedIn can enhance your professional online authenticity, but from reading Hayley’s post I realised that this can also be done via blogging.

I thought it was very important from Hayley’s post that she stressed that social media should be used merely as a tool to aid the job hunt process and that it hasn’t (as of yet) completely replaced the more traditional method of job applications and recruitment. Using online mediums to recruit has only just begun to rise, so I felt it was appropriate that she had mentioned that job hunters shouldn’t solely rely on methods via the Internet. Upon thinking on this further, from my own Twitter feed I’ve noticed that most jobs advertised online are for entry level/graduates, so perhaps employers are beginning to use social media for recruitment more for younger people because they know this is a highly accessible way to reach millennials as it is so popular to them. From this, it’s likely that in the future this will become a highly normal recruitment method.

I really liked Hannah‘s point that “although you are unlikely to get hired because of your Facebook page, you could easily be fired because of something on it” as I felt that cleverly summed up my own thoughts about maintaining professionalism, or at least an awareness of being cautious, across all social media channels, given that if employers are increasingly using online portals to recruit, we should be more responsible online so that we showcase ourselves in only positive ways and avoid posting anything NSFW that may affect our employability.


You can find my comments here:

Topic 3: CVs are Out, Social Media is In


More employers are using the Internet to recruit as a way to reduce time, cut costs and see a wider scope of candidates. (Make Use Of 2013)

I’ve seen this from my own Twitter feed. After following recruitment companies and general businesses that interest me, I’ve noticed Tweets daily on my news feed from these accounts advertising job vacancies across the UK, and a lot of them are for graduates.

Given there’s been a 73% rise in companies using social media to recruit since 2014 (Jobvite 2014), (higher than using their own corporate careers website and referrals), maybe it’s worth using social media to our advantage when it comes to the job hunt.

Research shows that employers screen potential candidates in making the decision to hire by viewing their professional experience and skills, among other qualities (Jobvite 2014), suggesting that it is becoming increasingly important to showcase ourselves as best as possible on our online profiles, not just on our CVs. How companies recruit is changing and candidates need to as well in order to get noticed and get the job.

So how should job-seekers adapt?

  1. Blog!

Everyone has a CV, so blogging about the industry you want to work in is an innovative, fresh and modern way to showcase your creativity to prospective employers as well as your genuine interests. It will help you keep current with your industry and constructing opinions about current topics related to your field of work lets your passion shine through.

Blogging will also give you a positive digital footprint (Mashable 2013) and given the personal nature of a blog, employers can engage with your personality and assess how well you would fit into their company culture.

2. Update your LinkedIn

Highlight your skills and achievements just like on your CV, but make sure you also join groups to network with others in your industry. LinkedIn is also a useful tool to search for jobs, with 79% of recruiters using it, (Jobvite 2014) so it’s worth making sure you’re using it the fullest. Don’t be scared to be vibrant and display your personality on your profile too – keep it professional but let employers get a sense of who you are by having a great head shot and headline. (Forbes 2015)

3. Tweet!

Follow companies that interest you and retweet them to connect with other like-minded people and start building relationships. (Forbes 2012) 39% of employers are using Twitter as a recruitment tool for posting jobs  and 51% of recruiters plan to increase their mobile recruitment methods (Jobvite 2014), so why not utilise your Twitter before everyone else catches on?

After you’ve done all of this, make sure your online professional presence comes across as authentic. Which can be achieved by:

  • Responding to people who want to interact with you – reply to Tweets and accept Connection requests.
  • Promote your blog using your Twitter
  • Maintain consistency across your profiles – for example in your photos, handle and tone
  • BE YOURSELF! (HelpScout 2016)

The Internet can be great when job hunting, but we all know it’s important to be cautious too. Always take care with what you post online because people, and more importantly, prospective employers, view your social media and construct an idea about you, so be the best version of yourself.



Forbes (2012) ‘4 Ways to use Twitter to Find a Job’, online, Available: [Accessed March 12 2016].

Forbes (2015) ‘Five ways to Boost you LinkedIn Profile’, online, Available: [Accessed March 12 2016]

HelpScout (2016) ‘5 Tips for Creating an Authentic Online Presence’, online, Available: [Accessed March 12 2016].

Jobvite (2014) ‘Social Recruiting Survey’, online, Available: [Accessed March 12 2016].

Make Use Of (2013) ‘Creating a Professional Online Presence is Crucial for Today’s Job Market’, online, Available: [Accessed March 12 2016]

Mashable (2013) ‘Why You Should Blog to get your Next Job’, online, Available: [Accessed March 12 2016]

Topic 2: Reflective Summary

It was refreshing to note that other people echoed the same sentiment as myself with regards to multiple online identities as being authentic and a single identity inauthentic. In Hannah Press‘s blog, she reinforced my initial thoughts that multiple online personas reflect everyday life in the sense that we alter elements of our personalities to be appropriate for the situations that we find ourselves in.

Having said this, Hannah’s post also made me consider that perhaps there are certain inauthenticities when it comes to having multiple online personas that I had previously overlooked. She used an analogy of a TV programme,’Catfish’, where people literally take on other individuals’ identities to communicate with other people online, leading them to think they are someone else – essentially committing identity fraud. I had not considered that multiple online identities could also refer to taking on other people’s identities; I had limited myself into thinking that it was more about creating different personalities of oneself. E.g. a fitness guru on Instagram, political activist on Twitter and a business savvy entrepreneur on LinkedIn.

This revelation led me to think further about the dangers that occupying multiple online personas can cause, which in turn made me contemplate that if in fact multiple personas online are inauthentic, then in some cases they are also a threat because they can be used to purposely deceive people and commit serious crimes.

Reading Melina Linden‘s blog post also made me consider the notion of control online, as she quoted a documentary that said “anything that’s been digitised is not private” which again made me re-evaluate my earlier rejection of the idea of having a single online identity, because surely that would be easier to control in terms of privacy, than various personas on various accounts. However this is not to say that total privacy control can ever be achieved, so I came to the conclusion that “based on the privacy concern, it seems as if it doesn’t really matter if we have multiple or just one online identity because we are never going to be 100% able to protect our privacy online.”


My comments can be found here:

Topic 2: Digital Identity


Image Source:

Digital identity derives from the practices individuals have been developing online and it centres around two areas: presentation of the persona assumed and reputation. (Costa & Torres 2011:49) There is an idea that, among other dichotomies, users can assume multiple online identities; not just one.

Based on the notion that initiation of any online activity initiates a digital identity, it is plausible in that sense to believe that we can occupy many online personas dictated by the nature of the activity in which we are involved and the purpose of the medium in question. For example, LinkedIn’s purpose is for professional use, so my display picture reflects that, the tone of my profile is appropriate as is the content – it is a digital reflection of exactly how I would present myself in the work place; smart attire, polite mannerisms and work-related discourse. Whereas on Facebook, whose nature is much more relaxed, my pictures are comedic and my language is  colloquial, just like my personality around friends in everyday life.

Costa & Torres however, imply that perhaps it is better to maintain one online identity, as they argue that multiple online identities interfere with the credibility of our identity, causing a suspicion among users. From my experience, I disagree – I don’t think it inspires scepticism because different services have distinct purposes and people act accordingly just as they do offline as I illustrated in my examples above. However I do understand the concern that it is difficult to decipher who the ‘real’ person behind the profile is, but I think that comes down to mismanagement of online privacy. Using my own profiles as an example, I think they are consistent with each other even though my personas vary; my social media are of similar tones with each other as they are with my LinkedIn because I am conscious of the digital identity I leave behind in my digital footprint regardless of the online activity in question. My online identity is open, but it isn’t completely open because I am aware of the negative repercussions of over-sharing.

It is debated that a single online identity is impossible to attain, whereas Mark Zuckerberg suggests that it is in fact the exact direction of where the internet is headed towards in the future. “Zuckerberg believes we have one authentic identity and says it is becoming less and less true that people will maintain separate identities.” (Jarvis 2011) So perhaps the fear of reputational damage at the work-place for that photo tagged of you from last weekend will disappear as “we will soon operate under the doctrine of mutually assured humiliation” (Jarvis 2011) and our reputation offline will not be affected by our identity online because our various online personas will all eventually merge into one.

Micheal Zimmer opposes this notion as he explains that we present ourselves differently offline depending on the situation we are in, and that online it is no different, and I for one agree. I adjust my behaviour accordingly depending on the environment; I do not act 100% the same with my parents as I do with my friends nor in a meeting with my academic advisor, but that is not to say that I am not being myself or not being genuine  – I’m conducting myself appropriately given the setting. Zimmer concludes, “This is how we navigate the multiple and increasingly complex spheres of our lives. It is not that you pretend to be someone that you are not; rather, you turn the volume up on some aspects of your identity, and tone down others, all based on the particular context you find yourself.” (Zimmer 2010)

So if we have multiple personas offline, surely by presenting one, single persona online, that would be inauthentic, not the other way around.



Costa, C. & Torres, R. (2011) ‘To be or not to be, the importance of Digital Identity in the networked society.’ Revista Educação, Formação & Tecnologias, n.o extra (Abril, 2011): (47-53).

Jarvis, J. (2011) ‘One identity or more?’, online, Available:  [Accessed 28.02.2016].

Zimmer, M. (2010) ‘Facebook’s Zuckerberg: “Having two identities for yourself is an example of a lack of integrity”.’, online, Available: [Accessed 28.02.2016].



Topic 1: Reflective Summary

At the end of my initial research and consequent blog post, I firmly decided that I fell more into the terms of Digital Natives and Immigrants due to the flawed point I noted in Cornu and White’s discussion.

However upon reading and commenting on other blog posts, I softened my approach and am now more lenient towards the Visitor/Resident notions, but from my reflection I have come to the conclusion that just because there are two distinct theories, this does not mean one has to choose one and reject the other. Can we not be both a Native and a Resident? Or contrastingly, a Native and a Visitor? Or an Immigrant and a Resident?

Perhaps I feel this way because the emergence of the Visitor/Resident theory was built upon that of the Native/Immigrant idea, and therefore it fills in certain gaps of Prensky’s original works, however the thematic underpinnings remain of a similar tone.

From reading Online with Hayley‘s post, I gained a better understanding of Prensky’s limitations that previously I had overlooked, so that in itself also helped guide me to a more accepting response towards Cornu and White’s analysis.

Judging by other’s posts, it is apparent that we, as a collective of ‘Natives’ and millennials, feel that when applying the Visitor/Resident spectrum to ourselves, we adhere to the notion that it is indeed a spectrum as we could not identify as solely one or the other because the labels we identified with varied depending on the site in question, its role and our intended use from it. For example, I am very much a Resident on Facebook and Twitter, using them daily as a primary source of information and socialising, whereas I am a Visitor to food blogs, using them only when I need to find a recipe, to only never return to the website again once I have got what I came for. Similarly on Melina Linden‘s blog, we agreed that it is very difficult to position ourselves as one or the other.

For me personally, although I feel that I do fall onto the Visitor/Residence spectrum, I feel like I am a Digital Native too because I cannot help but identify with and understand fully the reasoning behind Prensky’s work.

Does it have to be one or the other?