What is your digital footprint? How can you control it?

Image from the article “Wireless Family” by Camille Bautista via Mashable.com. Click on the image to read the article!

With our ever-increasing digital prowess, it is no wonder that social media and electronic devices like smartphones and tablets are becoming common place in education. A recent article by journalist Camille Bautista on the social news website Mashable.com explains our perceptions of the modern-day wireless family. Some of the key points of interest are:

  • 75% of teens have a social network profile.
  • The average number of text messages sent by teens per day is 60!
  • 77% of teens ages 12-17 have a cell phone.
  • 70% of children under the age of 12 have used a mobile device.
  • 70% of teens use their cell phones for homework.
  • There are over 20,000 apps just for learning on the iPad alone.

When you start to look at the numbers it is staggering how much of our interaction today is through a mobile device.

Want to know something? Google it. 

Who was that on television? Look it up on youtube.

Are they in a relationship? It’s not official unless it is on facebook. 

#woah #crazybiz #whatisahashtaganyway

Recently I had the opportunity to attend the Michigan Association for Computer User Learning (aka MACUL). While there, speaker George Couros who is the “division Principal for Parkland School Division and an innovative teaching, learning, and leadership consultant” spoke about our digital footprint and how we need to be careful of just what information about us is out there. So, let’s try it. Google your name. See what pops up.

You may like what you see.

You may see very little.

You may be surprised at what you see.

Whatever the result, people learn about us by our digital footprint. What we post on social media, what our profile says about us, and other information that we may or may not know is out there.

Many of my students are teens, 17-18 year old who, in a very short period of time will be going off to college or pursuing technical careers. It is very important that we all understand the implications of social media as part of the “career pathway.”

It is becoming increasingly popular to “Google it” when searching for information about perspective candidates online. Whether we agree with it or not, employeers are utilizing search engines and the web to look up prospective candidates. One way you, as the user can control this information is to have a positive online presence and be aware of what will happen when someone Google’s or Facebook’s you.

One of my favorite tools for doing this is to set up a google account and google alerts!

Google alerts is a content filtering engine that sends you an update immediately, daily, or weekly with new information being posted about you. You can set it up by name, keyword, email…etc. I highly recommend checking out this wonderful resource in your pursuit of managing your digital footprint.

Please check out the digital resources for this article below:


“Mashable is a leading source for news, information & resources for the Connected Generation. Mashable reports on the importance of digital innovation and how it empowers and inspires people around the world. Mashable’s 34 million monthly unique visitors and 14 million social media followers have become one of the most engaged digital networks in the world.”

Click on Image for Original URL

Click on image for original URL

George Couros

“Division Principal of Innovative Teaching and Learning for #PSD70. Speaker. Consultant. Dog-Lover. Legacy is not defined in what you have, but what you give.”