Anyone who uses the internet on a regular, or even semi-regular basis knows that the blogosphere and social networking sites have exploded. No matter what channel you get your news from, the anchor will often mention that they had people responding to the subject matter via Facebook and/or Twitter; major publications’ websites have options to connect via Facebook and every single person, organization or company that has a name going for themselves utilize Twitter as a way to connect with their audiences.
Online Marketing 101 will tell you that in order to be successful as a person, organization, or business, you need to open up your online market and to do that, you need to start a blog for your website, ensuring you always have fresh content for your website, and sign up for Twitter to connect with people even further and to spread the word about your brand. Online marketers have and will continue to give their colleagues and friends tips and tricks on how to utilize an online market, but the UK is taking it a step further and teaching young people early on about online marketing by implementing classes on Twitter, Wikipedia, podcasting, and blogging.
While many people are voicing their outrage over this decision for UK schools, I think it’s a pretty good idea. Perhaps I wouldn’t go as far as to teach classes specifically on particular social networking sites, but I would teach young people about the internet, given the technologically-driven world we live in today. When I was in middle school, sixth to eighth grade, my school taught us classes on how to use a computer and in seventh grade, we took a class on typing that was taught on an old-fashioned typewriter. It was because of those classes that I first got introduced to computers and how to work my way around one and also the fact that I can currently type around 80 words per minute. I currently work as a professional web designer and copywriter, so those skills have definitely paid off and I think they will also pay off in this case for UK children taught how important social networking websites and services are.
Any other thoughts? I’m quite interested in hearing from people who don’t think these classes are beneficial at all.