Sunday, February 1, 2015

Why I Reopened My Facebook Account

When my wife and I moved to China in 2010, we were informed that several popular websites of the west were blocked by the Great Firewall. What's interesting is that some of the foreign teachers that year remembered the day Facebook was blocked and where they were when they were informed. That's a little disturbing since the first event that came to mind when they mentioned this was 9/11. Back to my point...since Facebook was blocked, I decided to deactivate my account, focus on relationships in our local setting, and stay in contact with those I felt closest with via email or calls on our magicJack.

Fast forward four and a half years, and we've returned to China. We went back to Indiana for the 2012-2013 school year, but I still didn't activate my account then. Why not? I don't know. It just wasn't at the forefront of my mind. Upon return to the East in 2013, Facebook was (and still is) blocked along with Twitter and anything Google. It wasn't until a month or so ago that I saw an education writer consistently make suggestions on Twitter to join Facebook discussions regarding education issues I believed to be ├╝ber-important. I clicked on the link, but no dice. This one needed a log-in. After this happened a few more times, I decided it was best to reopen my Facebook account. Conversations were taking place, and I was missing out on good chunks of them even though I was already chatting with many educators on Twitter. Not to mention I could keep in contact with family and close friends once again.

Not a lot of time passed before I joined a group that focuses on Teachers Throwing Out Grades (#TTOG) and saw how sharing and collaboration were daily occurrences. By this point in time, I also had a professional blog (such as the one you're reading) up and running. Now I'm not one to check stats on my blog because they aren't the priority of my reflections, but I would be lying if I didn't say I was interested to see if Facebook was assisting in this way. Sure enough, it's topping the list (see below).

Do you think I made the right choice in reopening my Facebook account? 

What other pros (and cons) do you see in using it professionally? 

Do you use Facebook or Twitter more? Why?

P.S. - If you'd like to connect on Facebook, visit:

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