Exploring youth engagement in a digital age
I'm currently trying to answer this question through my dissertation and in the mean time am interested in other people's experiences of this...
It seems to me that the answer to this question would help to establish how we go about setting up pages etc and how it is we most effectively harness youthwork within fb.
Apologies, I need to work on my acronym busting don't I? By "IAG" I mean "Information, Advice and Guidance"...
Hey, not sure if you've ever checked out the BBC One FB page on Sunday Surgery Night? Lots of young people using it for IAG - infact I'm often surprised by how open people are in terms of talking about sensitive subjects out in the open. I think BBC are quite good with this though in that often they'll delete the comments a few days later to avoid having a permanent public record. In terms of TheSite.org FB page, there seems to be way more banter than IAG.
Hi Helen, thanks for that, I'll definitely check those out. Different horses needed for different courses I'm supposing...
I think there is a lot of use of Facebook profiles for relational youth work - but that tends to be one a more ad-hoc and individual youth worker level; whereas use of Facebook for IAG is something whole services can decide to do, and as it often takes place via Pages rather than Profiles, it is more visible and easy to identify as a pattern of Facebook use.
Facebook now supports some very different sorts of relationships (person-to-person / person-to-organisation) and so different approaches might be needed in youth work for each.
Would be great to hear about what else you are discovering in your dissertation work.
Thanks for replying. I'm really interested in what's working well and why using social media, but with Facebook in particular - Why similar organisations will have varying degrees of success using fb, and what practitioners' varying usage equals in terms of benefit to their work. I'm really appreciating your work so far on 'Youth Work and Social Networking', 'The Social Networking Phenomena' and 'Social Media; Youth Participation in Local Democracy'. I'll certainly keep you posted if I'm discovering much of interest...
I'm doing my dissertation on something similar too mines more down the ethical issues regarding youth work and socail networking.
I find being a young youth worker, the young people add me or try and communicate with me more for relational reasons than IAG. Although I don't add them as I don't feel that its appropiate to.
Thanks for the reply. The ethical issues surrounding SoMe and yp are really interesting - so interesting that I'm desperately trying to steer clear of becoming embroiled in that side of it too much although undoubtedly it affects practitioners' usage. I found that there was a nicely balanced discussion here;
...but in the end my opinion is yp are using it whether youth workers are there or not and there are implicit safeguarding issues in everything we do. Better to write a policy and keep improving it where needs arise than just sweep it under the carpet and pretend it's not happening. YP spend so much more time on fb than at a youth club (for example) in the week, we should be there supporting their development in this new arena. I wish you well, I'd be interested to know how you get on...