One major objection that I hear academics repeat, when discussing the ‘new world’ of social media and/or social networks like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, etc, is “it’s a waste of time”.
If it isn’t an objection to the ‘intrusive’ or ‘disruptive’ manner that students will use the technology when most academics are used to the student being quiet and writing every word they say, then it’s a complaint that it’ll take too long to figure out how to use the new tools, for too little return.
So far I’ve spoken to a few academics who have expressed an interest in Twitter, Flickr, Facebook, etc, and like the ‘theory’ about what their use could give them and their students … but so far no one has bitten the bullet and gone ahead with it. Perhaps I’ll be able to spend some more time over the summer break and work out a comprehensive guide and implementation strategy for one or more academics to fully integrate into their Unit.
In the meantime, I found the following SlideShare presentation, from David Wilkins, on the typical objections of introducing/allowing social network tools in the workplace. Their perspective is from the corporate world, rather than my direction (which is whether to use social media and networking in the classroom), but the principles are pretty much the same; encourage, monitor, share … and don’t fear it!