|Finale| Singapore X #MANG2049

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I am definitely a proud receiver of this crazy but awesome module. Thank you for giving me your attention as I bring you through the progress I have made.

Take a look at this Flippingbook that shows the development of my online professional profile! (Click on the image below!)

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In the image below, I have done a comparison of the difference in my online activities from the start to the end of the module.

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Here are some key takeaways for my future online behaviour from the Topics discussed in the module.

Topic 1: Digital “Visitors” and “Residents”

With the progression of this module, I certainly feel that I am moving away from being more of a visitor to a resident instead! This module introduced plenty of tools like Twitter, WordPress and content producers like Powtoon that are available for me to build my online presence. I am and will certainly be spending more time on the Internet building my identity.

Topic 2: Having More than One Online Identity

The choice of having multiple online identities is really subjective to different people and both have its pros and cons. While some cyber crimes like identity theft are unavoidable, what I can do is to ensure all my digital footprints are clean. After all everyone is made up of many different sides, as long as I stay true to myself, all the pieces will add up to be an authentic me.

Topic 3: Developing an Authentic Online Professional Profile

This topic really emphasised that I NEED to start building one! I keep talking about belonging to the digital generation but I have yet to create a proper digital profile for myself. I do not want to lose out to my competitors in the hiring process, especially when my area of study is on digital marketing. Maintaining a professional online profile takes a lot of consistency and hard work so I will definitely not rush into it but slowly build a strong and credible one instead.

Topic 4: Ethical Issues related to the use of Social Media

Controversies like the Justine Sacco saga reminds me that as a Marketer, I must not commit unethical behaviour even in times of desperation. These behaviours mislead consumers and take advantage of their trust. As web users, we have the responsibility to practice proper social media and good online etiquettes.

Topic 5: Content Producers – Making content freely available online.

As a receiver of free content I definitely agree and hope for many content to stay free. However, as a content producer, I believe it is situational and dependent on what my goals are. Do I want to attract more traffic to my work? Or is my content the source of my livelihood? Ultimately, everyone has to respect the creators and credit them whenever their content is used.

To end of, here is a video of my reflection and my plans for the future! (Tour around Singapore with me too!)

Transcript:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/obi7au3buvjknr0/Transcript-SingaporeXMANG2049XReflection.docx?dl=0

My social media links:

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Word Count: 497 Words

|Topic 5| Reflection #MANG2049

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While the focus of my post was on a business aspect, many of my peers focused on open access on information and research based content. The infographic below is a brief summary of what I have learnt from them.

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Information from Hazel, Xin Lin, Yong You, Zoey, Maureen and Issac, Infographic created by me using Piktochart.

Wanni deduced and I agree that the question behind the accessibility of your content should be ‘what do you want from it’.

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Image by Wanni

I was also triggered to look at this from the point of view for when paywalls ARE implemented, since 90% of online content could be held behind a paywall in the near future(Lepitak, 2013). What would the effects be on content writers when agencies like newspaper publishers start to charge their readers? Even though the writers may be paid by the agency, the loss in readership may leave negative impacts on them.

The possible implementation of paywalls also got my peers like Lelia and I worried for OUR access to online contents. Upon further research, I found that apart from a one-size-fits-all paywall, another approach would be a membership-based paywall that offers exclusive content to readers who are willing to pay. I found that this was a good compromise and alternative that benefits both the readers and the content producers.

As an avid Internet user, I find myself always questioning why do people offer their content free online. This topic gave me a better understanding of the rationale behind it. As a receiver of open access, I am extremely thankful for it for allowing me to produce my academic reports or even produce this very blog entry. Having said that, I personally am willing to pay for certain digital content like newspapers because I know it is extremely hard to come up with quality content. Kudos to all the content producers who allow freely accessible content to students like us!

Word Count: 300 words (without citations)

 

Blogs I have Commented on:

Lelia 

Wanni

Reference:

Stephen Lepitak, 2013, 90% of online content to be held behind paywalls in three years media company survey suggests, http://www.thedrum.com/news/2013/04/12/90-online-content-be-held-behind-paywalls-three-years-media-company-survey-suggests

|Topic 5| Take, Take, Take it All, Take All that I have #MANG2049

Who are content producers?

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Created by me using Piktochart

The advantages and disadvantages of providing free content for academic and research purposes as well as social and business purposes are vastly different.

Curiously, my research has led me to the understanding that academic writers do not usually get paid for their writing and might actually need to pay to publish them(Michaela Panter). Why do people still write academic articles if the publishers are often the ones who are paid? The writing is often a part of their academic duties to advance the field. These writers usually have a grant or salary that funded the research and will work for honour as well(James Fallows, 2011). Hence, I feel that there is limited exploration in this aspect and would like to focus my discussion on content producers who make their materials freely available for their business.

But first, I would like to bring your attention to contents like photos, creative works and music found online. Chances are, many of these content are copyrighted and are NOT freely available but may instead require payments or the owners’ permissions. For example, the video below explains if you can use the image you found on Google.

 This topic should be discussed in another post!

In the table below, I will compare the benefits and drawbacks for content producers providing freely available content for business purposes.

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Created by Me through Piktochart, Using information from Quick Sprout and Copy Blogger

As seen in the table shown above, providing free content as content marketers is extremely advantageous for the business. The video below shows some examples of effective content produced by various companies for their content marketing.

Also, as I am typing away on this blog, I am also a content producer that is offering my work freely online. However, the content I am creating (if done right) helps build up my online portfolio, something extremely important as discussed previously in my post here and it is definitely an advantage for me. There are many blogs out there like Playstation and BBC’s The Editors’ Blog that value-adds to the companies by anchoring their culture and displaying the professionalism and knowledge of the respective companies.

Looking at it from a business aspect, the advantages for a content producer who makes their materials freely available online definitely outweighs the disadvantages. Be it for a company or for ones personal professional portfolio, the focus should not be on monetising your creations, but on the long term benefits it will bring instead.

Word Count: 399 Words (Excluding citations)

 

References:

Michaela Panter, Understanding Submission and Publication Fees, http://www.aje.com/en/arc/understanding-submission-and-publication-fees/, [Accessed on 15 November 2016]

James Fallows, 22 Feburary 2011, Read this Academic Journal Article, but Prepare to Pay, http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2011/02/read-this-academic-journal-article-but-prepare-to-pay/71536/ , [Accessed on 15 November 2016]

Chris Garrett, 16 July 2015, How to Decide Which Content to Sell and What to Give Away for Free, http://www.copyblogger.com/sell-or-give/, [Accessed on 15 November 2016]

Neil Patel, 14 April 2014, 15 Types of Content That Will Drive You More Traffic, https://www.quicksprout.com/2014/04/14/how-these-15-types-of-content-will-drive-you-more-traffic/, [Accessed on 15 November 2016]

|Topic 4| Reflection #MANG2049

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I am glad we finally got a topic that allows us to explore and concentrate on different issues from each other!

I feel that with regards to privacy, misuse of personal data as raised by Zaidhan’s post and YongYou in his video as well as identify thefts are the most prevalent and harmful issues with regards to social media ethics. Dayna raised the problem of identity theft in a Human Resource(HR) recruitment perspective. I did not think of this and it really roused my interest because it is simply misguided for someone to be judged by a profile that does not even belong to them, especially when it may cost them a job.

Lee Gin’s post introduced me to the concept of A/B testing on Facebook which I personally found was interesting, but not as unethical as it may seem. Indeed, it may seem unethical to be subjects of experiments without our consent, but are we not facing this manipulation with the bombardment of advertising and marketing efforts everyday?

Jeremiah shared the same thoughts with me on the use of fake reviews and astroturfing by businesses. These practices mislead consumers and take advantage of consumers’ trust and are definitely unethical. Zoey and Charissa also provided examples of how bloggers, who have huge followings, treads on this issue too.

While many of us were focused on the unethical issues regarding the business use of social media, Elvina raised the issues on how the education scene may be affected as well. With the extensive use of social media in education today, the line of distinction between the personal and academic lives of students is often blurred. However I feel that teachers are the ones who have to suffer more from the unethical use of social media, as seen in the case of Yik Yak that went viral among colleges.

While social media is an extremely useful tool as we have discussed over the past topics, it does bring about plenty of ethical issues with it. There may be laws created to help protect certain groups of people from these poor ethics, but the truth is majority of the time we can only learn to deal with it. Ultimately, web users are the ones responsible for our own actions so it is up to all of us to practice proper social media and online etiquettes in order to maintain good ethics.

Word Count: 398 Words

 

Blogs I have Commented on:

Jeremiah

Lee Gin

Elvina

|Topic 4|Stop Astroturfing! #MANG2049

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My focus today will be on an ethical issue revolving around the business use of social media – Astroturfing.

What is Astroturfing?

It is the creation of a fake review by a company that a reasonable consumer will believe to be by another real consumer. Businesses usually astroturf through their own employees or relatives by asking them to provide biased reviews in attempts to improve their online reputation. (Kevin, 2014)

How is it done?

Making use of the Internet’s anonymity, firms create bogus reviews or accounts to falsely praise a company or defame another. The video below provides some examples.

 

(Video by me -PowToon, Information from here)

With advertising quickly moving on from traditional mediums to online platforms, there is increasing need for companies to develop positive online reputations and some may resort to unethical means when normal efforts are unsatisfactory.

In 2013, Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission fined Samsung $340,000 for astroturfing. Samsung was claimed to have paid two marketing firms to hire people to accentuate the flaws of their competitors’ products as well as disinfect negative reviews and post positive reviews about Samsung products. (Mike, 2013)

Why is astroturfing unethical?

We as consumers often rely on reviews on make our purchasing decisions as shown in this study by Nielsen.  I personally am very dependent on Facebook, Instagram and other online forums for reviews and I would hate to know that I have been deceived into believing otherwise about the company! In fact, this can be considered as a form of false advertising which can be prosecuted under several consumer protection laws(Bigcommerce, 2016) as well as by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Act.

This is a problem because a Gartner report predicts that 10-15% of all social media “reviews” will be fake opinions paid by companies by 2014. Not only will astroturfing cause consumers to believe fake opinions, it may also cause consumers to doubt real opinions!

Here is a video by FTC that shows how online reviews and recommendations may be manipulated behind the scenes.

Unintentional astroturfing?

In some cases, some companies may not be aware that they are guilty of astroturfing. The infographic below shows some tips on preventing your company from getting into legal trouble.

INFOGRAPH.jpeg(Infographic created by me, Information from here)

Social media is a great business tool only if it is used in an ethical and appropriate manner. Do not try to astroturf. Once you get caught, you will have to say goodbye to your customer loyalty and reputation!

Word Count: 399

References:

Kevin Kent, 17 June 2014, Review Trackers, The Legal Risks of Writing Positive Fake Reviews: Don’t Astroturf Your Online Business Reputation, http://www.reviewtrackers.com/legal-risks-writing-positive-fake-astroturf-online-business-reputation/, [Accessed on 11 November 2016]

Mike Elgan, 26 October 2013, Are online comments full of paid lies?, http://www.computerworld.com/article/2485252/social-media/are-online-comments-full-of-paid-lies-.html, [Accessed on 11 November 2016]

Nielsen, 4 October 2012, Consumer Trust in Online, Social and Mobile Advertising Grows, http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/news/2012/consumer-trust-in-online-social-and-mobile-advertising-grows.html, [Accessed on 11 November 2016]

Bigcommerce, 3 Feburary 2016, What is astroturfing, and why your business should avoid it, https://www.bigcommerce.com/ecommerce-answers/what-is-astroturfing/, [Accessed on 11 November 2016]

Kyle-Beth Hilfer, 24 August 2015, Why Astroturfing and Fake Online Reviews Are Illegal, http://maximizesocialbusiness.com/astroturfing-fake-online-reviews-illegal-9985/#, [Accessed on 11 November 2016]

|Topic 3| Reflection #MANG2049

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It is time I stop giving myself excuses and start working on shaping up my own online professional profile. My readings on articles and my classmates’ blogs have simply emphasized the importance of it.

Xin Lin gave a very comprehensive and interesting framework on how to create an online professional profile that I thought was extremely useful for self-branding. It did concern me if a single person is capable of doing so much, but I really liked how she gave clear steps that targeted every corner of building an online portfolio, something that I was lacking in as the suggestions I gave were more general.

Hui Juan raised a point about being authentic and how it is mutual that both you and your employer are looking for credibility in your self-portrayal. She reminded me that it is important not to over embellish your qualities in order to suit the company for it will not work out for both parties in the long run.

Also, Dawn and Julaina(video) talked about how your online profile is not just a representation of you, but of the company you work for. Most of my insights ended with getting hired, but they reminded me that your hard work in managing your online profile does not stop there. It is a consistent and continuous process.

Last but not least, Wan Sia brought up that the way in which you display your biography is extremely important as recruiters often suffer from information fatigue. To stand out from millions of others out there, you have to make use of creative ways to capture their attention and express your qualities in the quickest way possible.

I really did learn a lot of valuable tips through this topic!! Time for me to put them to good use 🙂

Word Count: 298 Words

Blogs I have commented on:

Dawn

Xin Lin

|Topic 3| Search Me? #MANG2049

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Here comes the time the Millennials enter the workforce, bringing along with us the culture of digitalisation. The rigid structure of talent management (recruiting, training, managing, retaining and evaluating) is slowly evolving to a dynamic environment that involves greater interaction and creativity (Dan Tapscott, 2014). As mentioned in Topic 2, employers are increasingly utilising social media in the hiring process. Furthermore, a survey in 2014 revealed that 73% of companies plan to increase their investment in social recruiting.

Screen Shot 2016-11-09 at 5.03.21 PM.pngThe infographic reveals the social media channels that recruiters use for recruiting. (Jobvite, 2014)

Though necessary, an authentic digital professional profile is not something that many are equipped to manage. For example. 70% of Singapore’s labor force and students now have LinkedIn accounts(Catherine Shu, 2013) and it is a platform that is widely used for recruitment in Singapore( Jeff Rajeck, 2016). However, Singaporean blogger Jeraldine raised that many youths are not using their LinkedIn accounts to full potential as many are created simply because their school required them to. In the infographic below, I have highlighted why LinkedIn is not working out for many Singaporeans and how we can tackle that.

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(Information from here)

You have got half of your work done securing a good LinkedIn profile. I say so because your LinkedIn profile is what people should be linked back to even as they access the other aspects of your digital profile like your Facebook, Twitter or blog. This too helps to rank your profile highly in Google for your name.

Talking about blogging, it is a great way to develop your online profile. Starting this academic blog has opened my eyes to how it can connect people and reveal the blogger’s qualities. I am able to identify which peers have a flair in writing, graphic design, or simply how they carry themselves professionally. This is a great way for employers to identify someone that shares similar values.

Of course, any talk about developing your digital profile will be useless if you have a muddy digital footprint. A part of developing a good digital portfolio is to clean up any unwanted information that is potentially damaging to your reputation. What you can do is to research yourself online, access your digital reputation, fix whatever is necessary, and practice mindfulness in your online activities. (Norton Team, 2015)

Below is a summary of what you can do to create a great digital professional profile.

SUMMARY.jpgAre you ready to be searched now?

 

Word Count: 405 Words

 

Catherine Shu, 29 April 2013, Linkedin reaches 1m users in Singapore, or 20% of the country’s population, https://techcrunch.com/2013/04/29/linkedin-reaches-1m-users-in-singapore-or-20-of-the-countrys-population/, [Accessed on 9 November 2016]

Dan Tapscott, 30 October 2014, Five ways talent managament must change, https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2014/10/don-tapscott-talent-management-millennials/ [Accessed on 9 November 2016]

Jobvite, August 2014, 2014 Social Recruiting Survey, https://www.jobvite.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Jobvite_SocialRecruiting_Survey2014.pdf, [Accessed on 9 November 2014]

Jeff Rajeck, 4 May 2016, How to use Social Media for Recruitment, http://www.cipd.asia/people-management-magazine/hr-news-opinion/social-media-recruitment, [Accessed on 9 November 2014]

Jeraldine Phneah, 12 May 2016, Why is LinkedIn so Important for Young Adults in Singapore, http://www.jeraldinephneah.com/linkedin-important-young-adults-singapore/, [Accessed on 9 November 2014]

Linda Le, 5 November 2013, 3 Biggest Reasons why LinkedIn is not Working out for you in Singapore, http://sbr.com.sg/media-marketing/commentary/3-biggest-reasons-why-linkedin-not-working-you-in-singapore, [Accessed on 9 November 2014]

Norton Team, 26 August 2015, How to create a great digital profile, https://uk.norton.com/norton-blog/2015/08/how_to_create_a_grea.html, [Accessed on 9 November 2014]

Christina DesMarais, 1 March 2012, 12 Ways to make your online profile work for you, http://www.pcworld.com/article/250858/12_ways_to_make_your_online_profile_work_for_you.html, [Accessed on 9 November 2014]