Social media savvy: The new digital divide?

Readers' advice to students: Think about the digital footprint you want to leave.

The inclusion of social media data in the algorithms that search engines now use to help people find relevant information online could create a “new digital divide,” educator and consultant Angela Maiers believes—“those with a powerful network and those without.”

She also proposed a “new rule” that sums up the importance of managing one’s online profile carefully: “You are what you share.”

In a wide-ranging Twitter chat with eSchool News readers Oct. 19, Maiers discussed the implications of the decision by Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, and other internet gatekeepers to build social media data into their web-search formulas.…Read More

Google expands its social search test

Google’s Social Search service, which includes public content from users’ social networks in search results, is getting promoted to from the company’s Labs site, meaning it is no longer considered an early prototype, PC World reports. In the coming days, Google will let English-language users of its search engine see relevant links to items their social-networking contacts have posted publicly on the web. Social Search results also will appear in the Google Images engine, the company said in a Jan. 27 blog post. To use Social Search, users have to be signed in to their Google account. Google also recommends that people create a Google Profile, which they can populate with addresses to their blogs, social networks, photo-sharing accounts, and so on. Google can then harvest the contacts and connections in those sites, as well as in Google services such as Gmail and Google Reader, and index publicly available, relevant content for these users’ Social Search query results. Besides the Social Search effort, Google also is indexing public posts from social networks and returning links to them in its search results, even for users who aren’t signed in to their Google account…

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