Social Reviews: Ask.fm, Delicious, and Quora
For the past six weeks I have been a student in the Information and Learning Technologies Master’s program at University of Colorado, Denver. In my Social Media and Digital Cultures class, we spend our time thinking about and discussing social networking as well as using social media tools. The main goal is to expand our learning of and professional development within the world of social networking and media. We are also learning to involve our own learners (whether in an educational or corporate setting) in learning opportunities that involve social networking and media tools. A recent assignment in this class asked me to try out a few new social sites that I had no experience with. I decided to try Ask.fm, Delicious, and Quora.
My husband is always commenting on how much he loves sites like Stackoverflow because of all of the useful information he finds there and I thought Ask.fm sounded like something similar. To me, the name implied a place where you could go to ask a question and get feedback (which in reality, turned out to be Quora). I was very wrong. After creating an Ask.fm profile, it took me an embarrassingly long time to figure out what the heck it was. Right off the bat I was asked, “How fast do you fall in love?” “What was the last thing that made you laugh?” And, “When do you feel the most comfortable?” That last one there was apparently, the “Question of the Day.” I ended up having to read through the FAQs to understand what I was meant to do and why I was supposed to do it. I’ve come to the conclusion that there is not much of an educational intention to this site and it seems to be more of a social ‘time suck’…as many social sites tend to be (I’ve lost many hours to Pinterest). I think if I were single, without a toddler, without a full time job, not a full-time student, and quite a bit younger – I’d say middle or high school – I would probably enjoy this site. I think the “FAQs for Parents” should have tipped me off that this site is meant for a younger crowd. I didn’t answer any of the questions, but thinking of that last thing that made me laugh…made me laugh.
Next up, I tried out Delicious! I thought this would be something similar to Foodgawker but it’s really just a link saver, or bookmarking tool. It can detect what browser you’re using and it offers you a tool to download to your browser so that you can bookmark any site and the link will be saved to your Delicious account. I think it’s a great tool and I would probably really consider using it if I didn’t already utilize Evernote for this. I work in a corporate setting, but I can see teachers using this and encouraging their students to use it to save educational resources.
Lastly, I signed up and tried out Quora. It’s is a question-and-answer website where questions are created, answered, edited, and organized by its community of users (Wiki). This whole concept sounds really useful and neat, but I am a “Googler”, big time. If I never need the answer to a question that someone around me cannot answer, my first initial reaction is always to Google it. I’d go so far to even say that my personal byline sounds something like, “Lemme Google it!” I think the idea behind Quora is fantastic, but I don’t know if I would ever have the patience to post a question and then wait for people to respond to it. There is however, great educational value in the sense that you can find information about almost anything on here. And it’s very cool that you’re getting real answers from real people, but at the same time, who are these people and how can I verify their credibility?? I have to add Quora to the “time-suck” category that I put Ask.fm in, although Quora seems a much more appropriate place for me to spend my time. I actually just lost 25 minutes to:
“What is the best piece of advice you could give someone about life?”
“What are some great shows with horrible endings?”
“What is the most powerful line you have read in a book?“