Perusing the internet for information on digital footprints has led to some intriguing discoveries. Though I have a very limited footprint and only minor usage on social medias such as Twitter or Facebook, I was still able to discover several of my past addresses and phone numbers. Being of limited technological skills, I must admit this scared the bajeezus out of me. If I can find all of this what can competent digital aficionados able to find?
I found this Ted talk and it made we curious about the digital tattoos that I have, my family has, and how hard they would be to find. This led me to discover a blog on Mashable that has great graphics for helping students understand the importance of have a positive digital life.
I was also able to find this great lesson for teaching students about digital footprints.
I think that the most important aspect of teaching students about digital footprints is to convey the importance of the future. Many students have a difficult time grasping (or caring about) anything that does not immediately gratify their desire. Students want prompt pacification and do not tend to focus on ‘the long run.’ I do feel that students would care about their digital footprint as presented on Mashable if the could see how it would impact them immediately. The lesson on digital footprints would be great for them to discover how easy it is for perspective employers and anyone else with the desire to learn a tremendous amount about them with or without permission. I plan on trying out my own version of this lesson next semester with my own students. The lesson introduces digital footprints, digital dossiers and how to use social media to influence both.
I feel that students must also be educated about how to positively influence their digital footprints by utilizing social media, blogging and searching for my positive associations on the internet.