Topic 4: Reflective Summary

It was really interesting this week to see such a range of ethical issues picked up upon and how many different ideas people had. Tom picked up on an issue which linked really nicely with topics from previous weeks, especially topic 3 and having a professional identity online. In the previous topic, there was the suggestion that the easiest way to keep online identities ‘safe for work’ is to keep everything online about you professional. Tom’s post discussed the ethical issues of social media in relation to employers looking up employees and potential employees social media accounts and whether it should be the case that you have to keep everything online professional. He highlighted that there are often posts which no longer reflect our feelings towards something. In a discussion, we agreed that if you are putting information up online publicly on sites like Twitter or Facebook, that means it is not an invasion of privacy because you’ve chosen to make it public but there is a grey area with regards to how people interpret things differently online. Becca’s post, on the other hand, emphasized the ethical issues of trolling, cyberbullying and online abuse especially on sites like YouTube which arises partly as a result of anonymity online. However, I highlighted that cyberbullying does also happen on non-anonymous sites like Facebook.

In discussions about my own post, I reflected on whether the was Facebook filters posts should be different to newspapers etc. and if so why. This discussion deepened my understanding of this topic and it resulted in me thinking about why I think it is different with Facebook and what I think would make this less alarming. I think that if Facebook were more explicit about things such as their political leanings this would help people see the potential biases to their News Feed. Engaging with other people’s posts this week really improved my understanding of some of the ethical issues of social media and especially the range of these ethical issues.




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