Category Archives: Social Networking


But Is That Ethical? Ask This App.

The disclaimer on Santa Clara University’s new mobile app strikes an ominous tone:

“In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this website/app.”

Then again the Ethical Decision Making app, developed by the university’s Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, aims for more-consequential uses than, say, Fruit Ninja or Angry Birds. The Santa Clara ethicists hope that people who make decisions that will change lives—business leaders, hospi…


QuickWire: Twitter Names Winners of Data Grants

In February, Twitter announced a new program offering researchers the chance to get free data for their studies. Apparently the idea has broad appeal: The company received 1,300 proposals from more than 60 countries, according to a blog post revealing the six institutions that have won the first round of grants.

The research projects will study “the diffusion and effectiveness of cancer early-detection campaigns” and the “happiness of cities,” among other things. The two American winners are the…


6 Technologies Will Change Colleges in Coming Years, Experts Say

A panel of 56 experts on six continents has come up with a list of a half-dozen technologies that “will be most important to teaching, learning, or creative inquiry within the next five years.” The two most imminent, panel members said, are the integration of social media into every aspect of college life and the blending of online, hybrid, and collaborative learning with face-to-face instruction.

The six technologies and the changes they’re expected to bring are detailed in “NMC Horizon Report…


Posting Your Latest Article? You Might Have to Take It Down

Guy Leonard received an unpleasant surprise in his inbox early this morning: a notice from saying it had taken down a copy of an article of his that he’d posted on the research-sharing platform. The reason? A takedown request from Elsevier, which publishes the journal in which the paper had appeared.

Mr. Leonard, a research fellow in the University of Exeter’s College of Life and Environmental Sciences, tweeted his dismay and posted a link to a screengrab of the notice.



QuickWire: Facebook Supports Open-Source Movement With an Open Academy

Facebook—a high-profile user of open-source computer code—on Wednesday unveiled a project in which it’s collaborating with a Stanford University professor to match computer-science students with open-source mentors and tasks and let the students earn academic credit as they work. Called Open Academy, the effort has expanded to 22 institutions in the United States and elsewhere, including Carnegie Mellon University, Imperial College of London, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the Un…


‘The Zuckerberg Files’: New Scholarly Archive Scrutinizes Facebook CEO


Mark Zuckerberg

In 2010 two privacy scholars published an op-ed criticizing the “Machiavellian” public-relations methods of tech companies like Facebook. They analyzed a PR script that may sound familiar to many of Facebook’s 1.2 billion users. A new feature, which shares more personal data with advertisers, is rolled out. A blowback ensues. Then comes the company’s response: minor changes that largely leave the new feature in place, plus reassuring noises like “we are listening to our users.”



Tech Savvy Is Essential to Student Affairs, Survey Finds

People who work in student affairs say that using modern media—including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube—has become a big part of their jobs, according to the results of a new survey.

That is not, of course, an earth-shattering insight. But the extent to which those and other technological tools play a role in the working lives of student-affairs professionals surprised Kevin Valliere, a graduate student in student-affairs administration at Texas A&M University at College Station, who conducted t…


Giving a TED Talk? Expect More Visibility, but Not More Citations

While giving a TED Talk may raise an academic’s visibility online, it has little impact on how researchers are viewed within their own disciplines, a new study suggests. Specifically, the study found that giving a presentation at TED, an annual conference on technology and society, appears to have no effect on the number of citations a scholar’s work receives after a video of the presentation goes online.

The study was led by Cassidy R. Sugimoto, an assistant professor of library and information…


Start-Up Companies Help Colleges Use Social Networks to Connect With Alumni

Today’s alumni may not always take the time to update their alma maters when they move to a different city or get a new job, but they’re likely to keep their Facebook and LinkedIn profiles current.

That’s the premise behind several recently formed companies that are using the Internet, particularly social networking, to help colleges and universities reach out to their alumni.

“As you advance through your career, you’ll get promoted or switch jobs,” said Brent Grinna, chief executive officer of …


A Virtual Meeting Ground for Language and Literature Scholars

Members of the Modern Language Association don’t have to wait for their annual meeting to share scholarship and compare notes on the state of their profession. Now they can meet and greet virtually via a new social-media platform, MLA Commons.

The service, open to anyone who belongs to the association, made its official debut early this month. The site uses the open-source Commons in a Box WordPress plugin/toolkit, created at the City University of New York.

Users can upload information and link…