Category Archives: Social Media

The Positives and Negatives of Social Networking


In today’s digital age, social media has become an integral part of the vast majority of people’s lives and has effectively made the world a smaller place. Sharing information and connecting with the world around us, along with the people within it, has never been easier or more popular with facebook, wikipedia and you-tube all featured in the top 10 most visited sites on the internet. On average, 16% of all users total time spent online is taken up using social media in some form with many users able to access these sites at any time using mobile phones. However, there are both positives and negatives to the ease of communication and information sharing that social media and crowdsourcing gives us.

Collaborative information created through crowdscourcing methods are a very popular way to share information. One of the of the largest collaborative encyclopedias online is Wikipedia which features over 10 million articles. Information gathered and shared in this way follows the old saying “a problem shared is a problem halved” and has allowed an unprecedented amount of information to be shared worldwide. Crowdscourcing can be a valuable learning method when integrated into teaching as shown through the social media modules’s collaborative bibliography. However, there are opposing views on crowdsourcing as shown through this BBC news article who feel that sometimes data collected by crowd sourcing can be inaccurate or unreliable. Another potential problem that arises when content is crowdsourced is that the rights to the content is effectively taken from the user and given to to the overall owners of the website.

Social media gives users a feeling of involvement and allows friends and colleagues to keep in touch through sharing photos, events and by providing instant messaging services. After the recent integration of spotify with facebook it is also incredibly easy to share your favourite music with your friends and can also be a fantastic platform for businesses and professionals to promote themselves. One interesting aspect of social media I hadn’t fully realised the potential for is using these platforms to perform project research as shown through the “Sound Around You” project. This has definitely given me some ideas for performing primary research for my MSc dissertation next year! On a larger scale, social media has also helped the world gain first hand news accounts and raise social awareness during world events such as natural disasters.

The Positives and Negatives of Social Media: Fox News Story

The disadvantages of the rise in social media have been well documented in the news recently as seen through the use of these technologies to help organise and plan the recent outbreak of rioting in the UK. There are also issues such as a potential lack of privacy and the platforms being use to aid criminal activities. However, I feel that overall the positives social media provide us with far outweigh the negatives. Any communication network can be used with malicious intent and it is pleasing to see that these technologies are also being used to help indentify criminals and for planning and organising charity events.


Top 5 UK websites usage image from


My Digital Identity


Hey everyone, my name is James and my family home is located in North Wales near Chester. It’s only about an hour’s drive away from Manchester but is a lot more rural and picturesque with plenty of fields and mountains- a very relaxing part of the country to live.

On my travels last summer- chilling at an amazing bar in New York

I’m a self taught musician that has always held a huge passion for both music and technology. From an early age I began working with and building computer systems and learning acoustic and electric guitar. I have an audio engineering background that lead to me to graduating with a first class BSc degree in Music Technology at Staffordshire University. This course was perfect for me as it combined my love for music with the technicalities of audio engineering using computer hardware and software. I really enjoyed my time there meeting some fantastic friends and learning a huge amount in the process. In my spare time I play music with various musicians, perform acoustic gigs and write and record as much music as I can. For more information about my professional background please check out

Playing a gig with my band in North Wales a couple of years ago

Despite having a long term background in computers and technology I am currently not a huge social media user and barely seem to hold much of a digital identity- the idea of keeping my own online blog and using twitter is definitely a new one for me! I never really saw the need to make a twitter account to inform my friends of what i’m up to in real life preferring instead to wait until I caught up with them in real life and could tell them over a nice cold pint. This is also my first ever blog post and I’m finding it quite strange writing for this format, hopefully I’ll get more used to expressing my thoughts electronically over the course of the social media module.

This cartoon definitely sums up the modern reliance of social media to interact with each other!

My first encounter with social media was using myspace to promote my old rock and roll band by uploading our tracks and informing users of our gigs. These days my primary social media format is facebook which I use mainly for sharing photos and staying in touch with friends. I recently created a soundcloud account to showcase my audio engineering work for clients which I hope to develop, update and incorporate into the project for the social media module. This can be found at and currently features tracks from various genres of artists I have worked with from acoustic singer songwriters and rock bands to jazz film scores and downtempo electronica.

Despite not having a large amount of interest in twitter and other social media platforms for personal use I would like to develop a professional digital identity in order to showcase my work, learn from other audio engineers, for networking purposes and also for liaising with clients. I also hope to keep this blog updated with information about the projects I am involved with whilst completing my Audio Production MSc and will also be integrating soundcloud tracks into this blog directly when relevant. Thanks for reading!

Cartoon Image from