Tag Archives: social media


If Educators aren’t using Twitter by now, are they likely to use it in the Future?

What had started as a small, one-sentence question has stayed on my mind for longer than I thought. Benjamin Stewart originally asked the question that makes the title of this post on Google+ and it actually turns out to be not that easy to answer. My first reaction was, it depends on how far Twitter has become an essential part in the day to day life of the average person whether it had established itself in the mainstream.

For example, if you don’t use a telephone today you probably have good reasons not to and therefore you probably won’t use it in the future. Sure, it makes you look a bit weird but that’s a personal choice. I don’t think that Twitter is that far as there are enough people left who have not even heard about it though this number is surely shrinking thanks to the embedding of Twitter in popular news and entertainment shows on TV.

Continue reading

Follow me on Twitter

The Easiest Way to get my Attention? Follow me on Twitter

Other than reading the headline may suggest, no, I don’t want to artificially increase my number of Twitter followers. But I often get asked which way is the best to approach me with your project pitch. As I was thinking about it, I noticed that many of the conversations I have had over the years started like the one I just finished an hour or so ago.

It was a very interesting Skype call with Matthew Burr, one of the co-founders of Nomadic.fm. How did he manage to get ahead on the list of people I want to talk to? The answer is simple: he just followed me on Twitter. As a side note: Nomadic.fm is now my favorite startup of 2013 so far.

Continue reading


The Fun is Over – Everyone needs a Social Media Strategy

Social Media

If you are following this blog on a regular basis or worked with me on a social media project for your company in the past, you know that one of the corner stones in my strategy has been to use social media quite freely so that it fit with your habits and workflow.

This worked pretty well throughout 2009 and 2010 when social networks were still a thing of the pundits and digerati. In 2011 we saw a tipping point and more “regular” users joined the services which eventually led to much more content flying around, making it more difficult for professional users to get their message through.

I already wrote about the “decline” of Twitter last week, and I will give you a short update on my new strategy and its outcome today.

But, as you can already tell from the title of this post, the message I want to get through is pretty clear: everyone, may it be a startup, established brand or individual user needs a strategy for social media. It’s getting far too serious to just use it for fun.

Continue reading


Is Twitter becoming the Exhaust Pipe of Social Media?

Over the past couple of weeks I have become increasingly frustrated with Twitter. I have the feeling that I get less value out of it than maybe 6 months ago. Clearly Twitter lost some of its appeal when Google+ launched.

Now, before I get deeper into that, let me explain the three main (and up to now only) ways I used Twitter for.

Number one has been to get first hand information, insights and personal tidbits from interesting people I followed. It rounded the profile of blogger, podcaster and CEOs I was reading / watching / interviewing. Number two was to get breaking news of the industry. And number three was to share my posts or interesting links.

Two of those reasons are completely broken, only one still works rather well.
Continue reading


Disqus is building a Social Network based on Blog Comments


Yesterday, I came across a new feature of Disqus, the comment system I have been using on all my blogs since early 2009. At a first glance, I barely noticed the red notification message that now shows up on each Disqus enabled comment section.

I noticed it because Big Think, the blog network which I contribute to with Disrupt Education just switched their comments to Disqus. Sunday, I wrote a blog post about Siri, the new voice enabled assistant on the iPhone 4S and its implications on learning and education.

Continue reading

The Why and How of Twitter – Social Media Beginners Guide

Whereas in the last social media post I talked about why I blog and why this might be a good thing for you or have benefits for your education company, I want to concentrate on some of the platforms for the upcoming posts in my social media series.

So let’s get started with Twitter today: why and how I use it.

Continue reading

How to use Social Media in Online Education – Beginners Guide

Delightful to many and inherent part of our lives for long, still unpleasant and somewhat ominous to some, social media has proven itself as nothing that will go away any time soon.

I intend to write this article as a beginners guide for individual educators and companies who just get started thinking of a strategy whether the use of social media might add value to what they do and in what ways this could be achieved following which of the different strategies.

I often see a discrepancy between individual use of social media and its adoption when it comes to use it within companies. So, let’s try and avoid some of the traps.
Continue reading

How Stefan Wolpers, Asparagus from Peru and Facebook saved a Puppy

Like the story of Ted Williams, this one is not about education 2.0 but it is simply too good to not share it with you. It also contains some interesting trends in social media, so it is still somewhat related to this blog.

Anyway, it all started with a Facebook update of Stefan Wolpers who bought some Asparagus from Peru.

Continue reading

Review Panel Discussion Language Learning & Web 2.0

Due to two recent business trips, the first to pretty Luxembourg, the latter to swinging London, this blog remained a little silent in the past couple of days, at least more silent than you are used to.

So with the new week just started, let me give you a roundup of why I was traveling and what has happened in both the educational as well as the business sense.

Continue reading

Language Learning and Social Media – 6 Key Dialogues


Best Agers sign up for Social Networks – Great News for Online Education

Yesterday Mashable and ReadWriteWeb published an interesting study of Pew Internet that shows the group aged 55-64 grew by 88% and aged 65 and above even grew 100% in the use of social networks.

What does this mean for online education? Good times, as this is a great customer group to target.

Continue reading

R:ED August 22nd to August 28th

  1. College Curriculum Requires Undergrads to Play Video Game “Portal”
  2. Seth Godin Gives Up on Traditional Book Publishing
  3. Skype Etiquette
  4. Why Social Media Projects Fail – A European Perspective
  5. Facebook Trademark Lawsuit Aims to Limit Use of “Book” by Others
  6. Hey Facebook, Here Are Some Other Companies You Can Bully Or Sue
  7. Guess Who Is Trying To Trademark The Word “Face”? (And Guess Who Is Trying To Stop It?)
  8. Kanji Amnesia And Why It’s Okay To Forget Kanji
  9. Does Your Language Shape How You Think?

Social Media – Focus on the Noun, Stupid!

I just learned about a very interesting blog post of Leo Laporte in which he says

Social media, I gave you the best years of my life, but never again. I know where I am wanted.

I think, he is right and deep in your heart you know it, too. Social Media is a waste of time.

Continue reading

When is Social Social? A Story of Walled Gardens.

Gregor Gimmy, Founder and CEO of Sclipo wrote an interesting piece on social features in online education recently and asked me for my two cents on it.

His point is that just by adding social features to a classic LMS it is actually not getting more social as it still is a walled garden, only open for members of the university, academy etc. and that social would mean that you need to tear down those walls and enable everyone to connect with everyone no matter on which campus.

Continue reading

#Edchat 10-20 How do we make Parents aware of Benefits / Risks of Web 2.0?


Seems like a big question but I think the answer is rather simple: show them the benefits and risks of web 2.0.

In Germany we have a big discussion about so called “Killer Spiele – Killer Games” as our conservative political parties see the reason for the killing sprees we had at a couple of schools in the last years in these. They basically blame ego shooters like Counter Strike and others to motivate kids to kill other kids.

And as we all know, this does not stop if politicians get once started. So other games with similar options get on the radar, too. Basically games like World of Warcraft get on the list for their possible addiction risks and so on and so forth. Problem is: the people who are discussing and deciding about these issues never ever saw a game like this, not talking of playing one.

But then some young politicians of the bavarian CSU (Christ Socialist Party) had a brilliant idea. Their party “fights” on the front to ban “killer games” in Germany. As they knew that basically all of their party friends of a certain age never had contact to no matter what kind of modern computer game they organized the first “Parlamentarischer Spieleabend” – parlamentary gamer evening.

They invited their colleagues to play a wide range of games covering “harmless” ones on the Nintendo Wii but also those famous killer games. They also invited professional esport players, so young guys who earn money playing in world wide leagues. Basically like football but on the PC and including Counterstrike and other tactical shooters. They explained to the politicians why they play killer games and so on.

Of course, this did not change the minds by 180° but it was the first time a real dialogue took place and also the first time politicians tried out what they were talking about for months.

Back to Social Media. I think schools should do the same with parents. Instead of letting them alone with their imagination and assumptions teachers should invite parents in the school and give some little seminars about what their kids are doing and why it is all so fascinating.

This would set free various synergy effects, I think. First of all the whole Social Media world would be demystified as I don’t think the kids will sit down with their parents and explain them Facebook and Twitter.

Parents will listen to the risks and if they get an objective overview from the teachers and they finally know what is going on behind “closed doors” parents can guide their children more effectively.

And in the end it will also help the teachers to implement the use of Social Media in the classroom. If everyone knows what is happening there is no need to ban it anymore, right?

If it is done right this could be the beginning of something big. All you need is to print out some invites to the parents and get the ball rolling.

First Look At… – Mingoville.com

Nice coincidence. Today I got a new Twitter follower called @Mingoville. When I checked out their website I was quite amazed. Mingoville.com is a free online community plus virtual world for kids to learn English.

A great use of Social Media strategies, matches perfectly today’s #Edchat Social Media topics.

Continue reading

#Edchat 09-22 Social Media in our Society and Education


Today on the #Edchat poll there are two topics rivalring closely in popularity and votes . The good thing is that I think they are related to one another, so I would like to cover both questions in this post.

Continue reading

#Edchat 09-01 How to prevent Social Media Burnout


First of all, for every guest on my blog who is not familiar with my background yet: I am, amongst other, an independent language coach who works only with adults.

My point of view is therefore from the business side. I am not a classic school teacher, in fact I started my career from a legal background specialized in European law as well as the history of law and legal systems. But I always had a big interest in languages so after my studies I took this road.

I just wanted to let you know as many of you will be refered by Twitter and I think most of you will be classic school teachers. Nevertheless, I hope you will find some interesting points in my post :).

Continue reading