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UM CVJ 596 - Social Media for collaboration, community building and citizen journalism

I'm honored to have been invited to teach at the University of Miami as an adjunct professor this fall term. I figure I'll be busier than ever -- what with work at startup Scrapblog and not infrequent travel -- but I'm confident that teaching will be a hugely satisfying experience and I very much look forward to it. The beginning of the semester is fast approaching and the first class will be this Thursday. I had prepared a syllabus a few months ago, but recently revised it since some things had already changed in the 'social media' space. Here is the revised curriculum, with dates. This may move to a class blog or wiki within the next week.

 

School of Communication

University of Miami

 

Web 2.0: Social Media for collaboration, community building and citizen journalism

UM CVJ 596

Fall Semester 2007

Alex de Carvalho

Office location: 2013, please request appointment

 

SYLLABUS

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION AND PURPOSE:

In a few short years, the Web 2.0 has profoundly changed the communication landscape. With the advent of new social media tools, more and more people are participating and engaging in the conversation online. As former members of the audience become the new creators of content, corporations, institutions and media organizations increasingly lose control of the message. After an overview of how and why we got here, this course will guide you through social networks, blogs, wikis, RSS feeds, media sharing, lifestreams, tagging and other social media tools. Effective communication requires using these tools. Since these services are so new and continually changing, students' prior knowledge about the internet is not relevant.

 

The course will explore the new media landscape in terms of online expression, social networking, identity management, community building and citizen journalism. We will learn from case studies and invited speakers, new effective strategies and applications of social media tools. Required readings expose students to current readings in social media and provide a base from which to explore their interests. Lectures by the instructor resituate these readings in terms of broader concerns, with specific examples and case-studies of emerging technologies and media.

 

COURSE PREREQUISITES:

The class is open to all and there are no prerequisites for this class.

 

MATERIALS FEES:

Students will not be required to purchase any materials or books and all required reading will either be handed out or available online for free.

 

ASSIGNMENTS/COURSEWORK

Weblog - 25% of final grade

Students will start and maintain individual blogs with a minimum of four postings per week, whether text, video or audio or some combination, for the duration of the course.

Content: commentary about a media website. Students will be expected to post comments on each others' blogs. The blog will be evaluated on

  • the quality of engagement with themes of the class
  • clarity of expression
  • cultivation of community through regular posts and comments.

Instruction in creating blogs and in the practice of blogging will be provided.

Pseudonymous blogging is permitted.

 

Wiki– 10% of final grade

Each student will edit an entry in Wikipedia and contribute materially to an existing wiki.

Instruction in creating wikis and editing Wikipedia will be provided.

Pseudonymous Wikipedia editing is permitted.

 

Social Bookmarking – 10% of final grade

Each student will write start and maintain an individual social bookmarking service on either del.icio.us, ma.gnolia.com or tumblr, with a minimum of four postings per week.

Instruction in editing social bookmarking services will be provided.

Pseudonymous social bookmarking is permitted.

 

Lifestreams – 10% of final grade

Each student will write start and maintain a "lifestream" or "microblog" service for the duration of the course on either Twitter, Jaiku or both, with a minimum of four postings per week.

Instruction in editing Twitter and Jaiku will be provided.

Pseudonymous lifestreaming is permitted.

 

Participation - 25% of final grade

Students are expected to do all the required readings for the course, to attend classes regularly, to have completed the reading in advance of classes and to participate actively in discussion. Recognition will be given to those who demonstrate consistent improvement over the course of the term.

 

Presentation - 20% of final grade

Students will choose two readings and present the content of the materials to class in a presentation (10-15 minutes). These presentations will summarize the material and then develop additional themes for further discussion. Students will be graded on the clarity of presentation and the level of understanding of the readings under discussion.

Due Date: end of term

 

TEXTS:

Readings will be as current as possible and the instructor will regularly assign materials. In addition, students will be responsible for keeping up to date with the course's blogroll which will be presented in the beginning of the semester. Handouts may be provided in addition, in the class and students are responsible for reading assigned materials and the blogroll prior to each class.

 

COURSE TOPICS OUTLINE

Week of August 20th, class session August 23rd

Course introduction, overview and objectives. What has changed online, how and why we got here and what it means for the media, for corporations – and for you.

 

Week of August 27th, class session August 28th

The read – write web: from consuming media to creating content. Blogging basics, RSS feeds and feedreaders. What information overload? Introducing microblogging and lifestreaming. Creating and maintaining a blog. Wordpress, Typepad, Technorati.

 

Week of August 27th, class session August 30th

What are wikis and how do they work. Wiki basics and wiki editing. Case stuides and examples of wiki use for reference, for nonprofits and for the media. Wikipedia overview and discussion.

 

Week of September 3rd, class session September 4th

Lifestreams overview and discussion. Peripheral vision, presence and introduction to object-centered sociality.

 

Week of September 3rd, class session September 6th

Media-sharing overview and discussion. How and why YouTube and Flickr got so popular. Case studies, controversies and future directions. What is Pownce and will people use it?

 

Week of September 10th, class session September 11th

Social Bookmarking overview and basic notions. The role of Firefox and open source extensions. Creating a del.icio.us or tumblr account. Discussion on crowdsourcing and how and why people collaborate.

 

Week of September 10th, class session September 13th

Social Networking overview and discussion. The Social Graph and social network portability. Mini-feeds. LinkedIn, Facebook, MySpace, Orkut, Flickr. Future directions.

 

Week of September 17th, class session September 18th

The F8 developer platform and Facebook applications.

 

Week of September 17th, class session September 20th

Other forms of online collaboration. IM, SMS, VoIP, shared documents and mobile social software. Online Identity, reputation, pseudonimity and privacy discussion. OpenID, ClaimID, Ziki. Social network portability revisited.

 

Week of September 24th, class session September 25th

The rise and rise of Social Media and what it means for corporations, institutions and the mainstream media.

 

Week of September 24th, class session September 27th

Community building online: case studies from individuals, companies and the media.

 

Week of October 1st, class session October 2nd

Social Objects and object-centered sociality. What is Social Object? What makes for a good social object and how to create sociality around objects.

 

Week of October 1st, class session October 4th

Community building: is this the new, new marketing? What is community management? Why is community management important … or can we do without it? Case studies.

 

Week of October 8th, class session October 9th

Community building: social media tools for building better and more engaged local communities. Social web tools and services for non-profits, for disaster relief and for local news reporting.

 

Week of October 8th, class session October 11th

The new world of media: is online the future or is it already here? What are the current winning models? How is mainstream media affected by the social web?

 

Week of October 15th, class session October 16th

The new world of media: case studies from new initiatives as well as from the mainstream media

 

Week of October 15th, class session October 18th

The new world of media: best practices, resources, collaboration and ethics in online journalism. Mashups and Open Source.

 

Week of October 22nd, class session October 23rd

The new world of media: initiatives in citizen journalism. Case studies on Now Public, Newsvine, OhMyNews and other sites.

 

Week of October 22nd, class session October 25th

The new world of media: opinion leaders and influencers. Other initiatives in citizen journalism.

 

Week of October 29th, class session October 30th

The new world of media: online collaboration in gaming and mmorpgs. What lessons can be applied to the world of work.

 

Week of October 29th, class session November 1st

The new world of media: case studies in mobile services and tools for citizen journalism.

 

Week of November 5th, class session November 6th

The new world of media: open discussion on citizen journalism. What does the news organization of the future look like? Is there a role for citizen journalists? How can social media tools be used more effectively? 

 

Week of November 5th, class session November 8th

The new world of media: continued open discussion on citizen journalism. What does the news organization of the future look like? Is there a role for citizen journalists? How can social media tools be used more effectively? 

 

Week of November 12th, class session November 13th

The new world of media: continued open discussion on citizen journalism. What does the news organization of the future look like? Is there a role for citizen journalists? How can social media tools be used more effectively? 

 

Week of November 12th, class session November 15th

The new world of media: continued open discussion on citizen journalism. What does the news organization of the future look like? Is there a role for citizen journalists? How can social media tools be used more effectively? 

 

Week of November 19th, class session November 20th

Student presentations and class discussion

 

Week of November 26th, class session November 27th

Student presentations and class discussion

 

Week of November 26th, class session November 29th

Student presentations and class discussion

 

FINAL EXAM PERIOD:  Thursday December 6th 8:00-10:30pm

August 21, 2007 in Miscellaneous Stuff | Permalink

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Comments

Wow. I'd totally Ace that course. Can I do an online audit or just heckle you from iChat? i'll dub it Hecklr 2.0.

"OMG. Slap some round buttons and a gradient on that blog asap"
"Your lifestream is so dead, i'm calling it 'dunzo'"
"In yo face, technorati"
"Anyone who adds Perez Hilton to their social bookmarking site deserves to be severely ridiculed"

Posted by: Lisa | Aug 22, 2007 7:05:05 AM

ROFL ... you're right, I think we'll have a blast ;)

I'll keep in mind setting up a chat or videoconference with you sometime during the semester, if you're up for it, that is.

Posted by: Alex | Aug 22, 2007 10:42:22 AM

Brilliant idea! I just wonder how I could participate in this course online. Is it posible though?

Posted by: Clifford Derrick | Aug 23, 2007 7:11:43 AM

@Clifford thanks for asking ... I'll check but I doubt it'll be possible to assist this class online. We'll be posting class notes online throughout the course, though.

Posted by: Alex | Aug 23, 2007 3:01:56 PM

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