Final thoughts on #UOSM2033

So with the Living and Working on the Web module during to a close, I have created a prezi to sum up my experiences of the module and express my thoughts on what I have learnt over the course of such an interesting and extremely useful module.

Double click on the screenshot below to access my prezi.



Time to reflect …topic 5

Open Access Week 2014

This weeks’ topic was a really good topic to round off a very interesting module. If I am being honest, I had never even heard of or considered the Open Access debate, so it was great to learn more about it and in fact, to understand just how important it is not only for university students like myself, but everyone.After researching around this topic through watching instrumental videos and reading resources on OA, I collated my research on whether ‘Open Access should be available for all’ using Prezi which was new to me.

After  finally getting to grips with prezi, I set about constructing my presentation to feature and focus on the advantages and disadvantages of granting OA to everyone – I was particularly interested to read about just how expansive the advantages of OA were, such as distributing research materials to developing countries. I concluded my presentation with my own thoughts on OA, principally that it has the potential to educate and therefore empower others and it should consequently be accessible to all.

On the whole, my post received some really great comments and I enjoyed responding to the questions. I found that this week reading other students responses to OA was very  interesting and I learnt a lot from their differing angles on the topic. Anna’s PowToon for instance, educated me about the affects of Spotify ( a form of OA in the music industry), and how it had reduced piracy, and this enabled me to respond to a question posed by a student from #MANG2049 on how OA affects creative industries.

A comment from another #MANG2049 student, Elisha also challenged my views on what I had written this week as I had initially mentioned in my disadvantages of OA, that it is not economically viable. However, she rightly pointed out that publishers like Springer, fund authors in aid of OA, which obviously results in OA being much more economically viable.

The comment I received from Nam was also interesting this week, as he pointed out that I had focused on the aesthetics of my blog rather than considering the benefits and disadvantages of OA for content producers. I do agree with him, as I was intent on making an aesthetically pleasing post as it was my final blog and therefore experimented with prezi, however, I still feel that I answered the question well – whilst I did heavily focus on the benefits of OA for everyone rather than the content producer specifically. Nevertheless, I received some very positive comments from fellow students and was pleased with the debates we entered into on the topic as they furthered my knowledge on the subject.

Here are my comments this week on Pippa’s and Catherine’s blogs’.

Pippa’s blog:

Catherine’s blog:

Image from Open Science

Should Open Access be available for all?

For this week’s blog post, I have decided to try something a little different and create a Prezi for the first time, in an attempt to respond to the topic in question. Here’s hoping it loads successfully…

In the meantime, here is a great visual from the Australian Open Access Group on the benefits of Open Access:


Image sourced from:



Reflection on Topic 4

This weeks topic has been, without doubt, my favourite topic to research and think about during the module so far. I have really enjoyed researching and considering the ethics behind businesses using social media as a platform to enhance their popularity.

My own research highlighted the ways in companies manipulate social media in order to promote themselves through a number of ways such as false and unreported endorsements and how often social media is used as a means of self-promotion. My comments on Coca-Cola joining the social media trend for the ALS charity were controversial with my coursemates as I implied that Coke were simply jumping on the trend to appear ethical and gain popularity. However, I still stand by this view and believe that in addition to remaining current and up to date, social media also allows companies to promote a delberately manipulated and positive image of themselves to their clients, which consequently raises the issue of ethics.

The posts my course mates created in response to the topic were equally really interesting and I found the differing angles they took on the topic to be really thought-provoking. Reading Din’s blog was interesting as I found that we had taken very similar approaches to the topic and had both agreed that companies can invade your privacy through their monitoring of online behaviour which is therefore unethical. However, I had not considered those who create dishonest Youtube videos as unethical prior to the topic and reading Din’s blog, yet I will think much more carefully about the purpose of clips more in the future.

Adam’s blog was also great and I was intrigued to read of how companies had even used natural disasters as an excuse to promote their products or services with particular reference to Urban Outfitters offering free shipping in the wake of a storm hitting America. This seems absolutely ludicrous, but yet Adam’s blog and link to Buzzfeed showed that is in no way uncommon for businesses to manipulate such situations. Coupled with my research on brands such as Wal-mart and Coca-Cola, this week truly opened my eyes to the ways in which businesses truly use social media, and ultimately the fact that their use of the platform is often dishonest and unethical.

My comments on other blogs:

Ethics for businesses using Social Media

Ethics in businesses’ use of Social Media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook is something which often gets overlooked. For instance, using myself as an example, I rarely consider the fact that whilst browsing websites, adverts for other sites I have visited (see below) will appear in the sidebar. However, this is of course a deliberate move by companies and advertisers, and the monitoring of online behavior and ‘behavioral targeting’ is in fact an invasion of privacy and therefore unethical. 

An example of a advertising in my siderbar

Here is an example of ‘Behavioral targeting’ OR advertising in my sidebar, on a completely unrelated website.

Another ethical issue we should be aware of is the fact that ‘temptations still exist for advertisers to fake their endorsements and literally purchase favorable commentary’ (Barry 2014). This has been the case on both TripAdvisor and Amazon recently where teams of writers were employed to boost products ratings and slate others.

A further issue is that of unreported endorsements in companies use of social media and advertising, which also brings with it ethical implications. All compensations given to bloggers and tweeters, in order to promote a company and their products must be disclosed. An example of unethical endorsements happened in 2006, when Wal-Mart received negative publicity when its PR agency…supported two bloggers road tripping across the U.S. writing positive stories about Wal-Mart’ (Vinjamuri,2011), whilst being funded indirectly by Wal-Mart, which is obviously unfair and biased.

In order to counter this and to add transparency, Native Advertising is ‘perhaps the biggest trend in advertising’ (O’Brien,2014) right now, and involves companies sponsoring product write-ups / features, but with a clear indication that they have paid for the content, as demonstrated below:

ELLE native advertising example for Acme Apparel

ELLE native advertising example for Acme Apparel

A final ethical issue raised by companies use of social media in business, is the fact that businesses jump on the back of social media trends to promote themselves. A fabulous example of this was Coca-Cola joining the ALS ice bucket challenge trend. Whilst this seems very charitable and ethical of them, the video of their Senior Vice President taking part in the challenge is littered with company branding, which therefore makes it yet another publicity stunt for Coke, and sadly takes away from the worthy cause that is ALS.’Companies that join [the trend now] risk the appearance of using the attention built by thousands of participants for profit’ (Abbruze, 2014) and this is in my mind how this advert appears, whilst it undeniably still raises money for a great cause.

To summarize, the main ethical issues raised by companies using social media are:

  1. Invasion of Privacy
  2. Unreported endorsements
  3. Use of Social Media for self-promotion


Abbruzzese, J. Coke Jumps on the ALS Ice-Bucket Challenge,(2014) Mashable. Available at: Accessed: 23/11/14

Barry,J. 7 Ethical Dilemmas Faced in Social Media Marketing (2014) Available at: Accessed: 23/11/14

O’Brien,J. 4 Native Ads and the Media’s talking about, (2014) Mashable. Available at: Accessed: 23/11/14

Vinjamuri,D. Ethics and the Five Deadly Sins of Social Media, (2011) Forbes. Available at: Accessed: 23/11/14

Video from:

Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola’s Wendy Clark accepts the ALS #IceBucketChallenge. Available at: Accessed:23/11/14

Images from:

Moses, L. Hearst is the latest publisher to jump on native ads trend. Adweek. Available at: Accessed: 23/11/14

Screenshot of my own translation search from Accessed: 23/11/14

Reflection on Topic 3

I really enjoyed this week’s topic given it’s relevance for final year students like myself who are looking to kick-start their post-university careers, and interact with employers online.

In this week’s blog, I considered the benefits of firstly using LinkedIn to create a professional presence online and then looked at how Twitter is emerging as a social media platform which facilitates interactions with employers on all levels from companies. I provided a list of top tips which I had collated from researching further on how best to use Twitter and LinkedIn for a professional purpose and for the first time, I embedded a video into my post which I felt really clarified my discussion of why students should use LinkedIn.

Whilst I chose to look at Twitter and LinkedIn, the other blogs posts published by my fellow students have got me thinking on the importance of ensuring that our presence on other social media platforms like Facebook for instance, is  professional.

To this end, Sophie’s blog was really useful for highlighting to me the fact that employers are checking content we post on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter rather than just LinkedIn, which I was unaware of prior to this week.

Equally, Catherine’s blog demonstrated through her reading of the PotentialPark Survey (2011) recognised that authentic professional profiles are expected to happen on LinkedIn, but in fact, Facebook is where this actually happens. Which again stressed the importance of a professional Facebook profile to me!

Anna’s blog was also very helpful in clarifying what constitutes an authentic online profile and her use of Prezi was original and easy to follow. Her question ‘have you ever googled yourself?’ encouraged me to do just that and really underlined the importance of creating positive ‘google juice’. This coupled with my own findings that “80% of employers Google job seekers before inviting them into an interview!” bought home the importance of creating a professional online presence.

All in all, this week’s topic has been extremely topical (excuse the pun), but has truly shown me how I can best make my online presence professional and hopefully successfully interact with employers.

My comments:

Freya’s blog:

Anna’s blog:


Developing a professional online profile

Today more than ever, it is vital that we have a professional online presence given that

“80% of employers Google job seekers before inviting them into an interview!” (Joyce, 2014)

This percentage certainly shocked me and got me thinking, what is the best way to create an authentic professional online presence and self-brand ourselves to attract potential employers…

So let’s start with the most obvious platform to attract, interact and connect with millions of professionals  : LinkedIn. An article on the Guardian aimed at students explains that ‘a LinkedIn profile is your chance to build a positive online presence for yourself,’ (Burch, 2013) and this is where I personally started when creating my own professional identity.

The video below produced by LinkedIn succinctly summarises how to use the platform to successfully network with professionals in your desired field of work… and humorously reminds us that LinkedIn is not just for old people with heavy briefcases

But is LinkedIn the Best and Only option for creating a professional presence?

Twitter also acts as the perfect platform to connect and engage with companies and industry figures. Twitter is ideal for interacting with companies you are interested in, as its ‘openness…shocases your talents, personality, style and interests'(Hartwig,2013). I personally use Twitter to follow PR and Marketing companies as I am interested in these industries and really appreciate the fact that you can engage with anyone on any level (from intern to CEO) at the company – it’s so vital to build up a rapport!

Moreover, Twitters’ new format and extra features such as pinned Tweets and Best Tweets allow job seekers to paint a more accurate picture of their ‘professionalism, skills sets and interests’ (Le Viet, 2014) and it is understandably emerging as one of the best social networks for both the creation of a professional online profile and for job searching.


Twitter redesign aids job seekers, Mashable 2014

Here are some top tips for creating a professional online profile:


  • Showcase what makes YOU special
  • Have an updated profile with all your relevant experience
  • Include a professional photo
  • Connect to others with a purpose (Steimle, 2013)
  • Share regularly and wisely (Halzack, 2013)


  • Showcase what makes YOU special
  • Be distinctive
  • Professional profile photo
  • Share and RT content you are genuinely interested in
  • Follow companies / individuals in industries you want to work in
  • Show your personality – keep your audience in mind!

Bring all your profiles together via the platform – to really showcase yourself to employers and get your professional profile noticed.

(406 words)


Burch. K, Students: how to use LinkedIn at uni to help you get a job when you graduate. The Guardian. Available at: [Accessed 9/11/2014]

Hartwig. E, How to Effectively Use Twitter as a Job Search Resource, Mashable. Available at: [Accessed 9/11/2014]

Halzack. S, Tips for using LinkedIn to find a job, Washington Post. Available at: [Accessed 9/11/2014]

LinkedIn, LinkedIn for Students: Your Career Starts Here. Available at: [Accessed 9/11/2014]

Le Viet. S, Twitter’s Redesign Makes the Platform Ripe for Recruitment. Mashable. Available at: [Accessed 9/11/2014]

Joyce. S,What 80% Of Employers Do Before Inviting You For An Interview. Huffington Post. Available at: [Accessed 9/11/2014]

Steimle. J, Top 3 Tips From a LinkedIn Expert. Forbes. Available at: [Accessed 9/11/2014]

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