Image via Pixabay
Digital identity means so much more than I initially thought. Before taking eci831 I would’ve simply said it is your online presence. I would now extend that to being your online: past, present and future self.
Past – As far as my past social media wasn’t around when I was in high school in the late 1990’s. Even Myspace was after my teenage years. I am glad for this, and am not afraid to tell my students I feel this way. This is not to say I was repeatedly making horrible decisions, just that when we did make poor choices no one was there capturing them on video or in photos. Any gossip, true or otherwise was maybe discussed for a week or so and was then forgotten. Teens today are under constant pressure and scrutiny, even when they’re with their closest friends. Nothing is forgotten, and they’re always connected.
Present – For my present practices for digital identity I would give myself an average rating. I have my personal Facebook and Instagram accounts, which I rarely post on. On Facebook I am a member of two business education teacher groups, which I do find extremely valuable for resources and ides. I have had a twitter for many years, but only started using it valuably last semester for eci831. I have really enjoyed using twitter, mostly for professional articles and making connections. I also find twitter great for keeping up-to-date on news.
Future – As far as my future practices I need to work on building up my professional idenity online. Although, I don’t believe I have anything negative to hide there is also not a huge positive presence to display. I don’t feel the need to have a professional portfolio at this point, but I do need to build up and maintain my PLN.
Gif via Giphy
I think a lot about how what my high school students do presently will affect their future, but I don’t honestly think a lot about what the actual internet will be like in 10-15 years. I probably should, especially since my own kids are 4 and 2, and will be using the internet in some capacity in that time frame. So like any reasonably out of touch tech person I googled “what will the internet be like in 10 years”. I came across many articles, that touched upon: decreased privacy, increased VR and the internet of things increasing. The article 7 Predictions For How The Internet Will Change Over The Next 15 Years highlights how internet access will become even more prevalent and how “augmented and virtual reality will play a major role”. That is completely beyond my understanding. So as an educator, and parent we need to prepare students for a digital world that doesn’t fully exist yet, we don’t fully comprehend and while it is online it will still impact their daily lives.
Recently I read the novel Ready Player One. I read it thinking that I would maybe use it for a novel study with one of my future ELA classes. Turns out I LOVED it, and thought it was a great book. The book is set in 2045 and the majority of people basically live their entire existence online in the Oasis. People use actual currency to purchase items so that they can live better in the Oasis than their real lives. The main character also attends school and socializes online. While the whole idea of the book is for the main character to complete a series of tasks and complete a game that was created by one of the Oasis’s founders, it was still fascinating how his real life paralleled with his online life. I hope the movie is as good as the book, although they never are.
My current questions/ thoughts:
- How do we prepare students to balance their real lives with their online lives?
- Is it best to stay connected and immersed in up-to-date technologies so I somewhat have an idea of what my students and kids are experiencing?
- Is it normal that all of this augmented/ VR stuff scares me? Not like the games that currently exist, but the fact that young people may become fully immersed and lose their developing sense of self.
Thanks for reading!