Privacy or Popularity?

Reading different articles about privacy and the safety of our presence online, I found an interesting pool of articles collected and published in the “The Privacy Project”(The Privacy Project (NYTimes).

It is a good question on how to handle the balance between your privacy and safety of your own and family and between being active and visible doing your work, having a good purpose with social media.

This is a very goo matching song about being so “Popular” by Kristin Chenoweth. She sang it in “Wicked” as an original cast member in this musical on Broadway.

Popular (From “Wicked” Original Broadway Cast Recording/2003)


As an artist, I experience often, this struggle on Facebook and other media channels. It was good to have a lot of exhibitions and become more and more visible and connected with the art scene around the world, but sometimes I was lost spending to much time in entertaining the public instead of focusing on creating my own artworks and the time in the studio, or to reasearch and to reflect.

The same question I was handling when I made my Tweeter account as a teacher to become more connected with teachers around the world. It was important to have a look at what is out there and share my experiences, results, and get inspired, but preparing my direct teaching lessons plans and the contact with my students and my community was even more important. I think sometimes we lose track of the time that we are spending and then we loose the balance. So I decided once or twice a week should be enough for keeping in contact with Tweeter.

With Facebook, I have really a big struggle, I think it became an addiction, like a computer game or youtube gaming for my kids. Then, I decided only during the weekend to check a bit.

But I am happy now that I am busy with COETAIL And I can discover interesting material to read. Another interesting article was about the young people in America and their access and development according to the access to the media and technological tools.

Nowadays, being a disadvantage because of your social status of having access to the internet is not fair. Of course, it is hard to develop know-how and technology and media skills if you don’t have resources and tools to work with.

In the book, ” Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture (John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation), on page 13 we can read about that.

Castells writes about youth who are excluded from these experiences: “Increasingly, as computer use is ever less a lifestyle option, evermore an everyday necessity, inability to use computers or find information on the web is a matter of stigma, of social exclusion; revealing not only changing social norms but also the growing centrality of computers to work, education and politics” (Castells, 2002, in Livingstone, 2003, p. 6).

In the same article on page 15, we learn about how children used their conceptual and strategic thinking about solving problems, from “game theory” skills.

Answering some of the essential questions of our theme “Creating the balance between privacy and publicity” applied in our school, I came up with those thoughts.

What actions have you taken to maintain your privacy and the privacy of your students?

Don’t mention their names. Pick if possible pictures without their face for public view. Sometimes if the children are in pajama, don’t share at all the pictures with other people.

 What policies does your school/country have in place to protect student privacy? 

1)Ask the parents if they would like to have their pictures and names of the students shared with the public for our advertising materials or not.

2)The parents and students’ emails are not shared without permission within our school with anyone.

How do you contribute authentically while protecting privacy?

Create online exhibitions and present evidence of student’s artworks. Introduce student’s results and artworks for the weekly newsletter or twitter.

Post students’ artworks, erasing the name digitally before posting on social media.

Participating in common sense workshops together with my colleagues. Contributing to evidences and resources together with our curriculum planner manager for these theme.

How about you, which are your genuine ways to contribute to protect the privacy of your students from your school?

2 Replies to “Privacy or Popularity?”

  1. Hi Simona!
    I think your blog title, Privacy or Popularity, accurately explains this week’s theme. I agree with you that we need to decide if we want to keep things private or be popular by posting things on social media. I also get caught up in how much time I used to spend checking my social media accounts.

    You mentioned towards the end of your post that at your school the parents’ and students’ emails are not shared without permission, even within your school. What happens if a specialist teacher (Music, Art, PE) tells the classroom teacher that they would like to contact the parents of a student to discuss the student’s disruptive behavior during a lesson? Would the classroom teacher then share the parents’ email addresses with the specialist teacher? Or would this happen in a different way?

    1. Hi Erika, thank you very much for your comment.
      About your question, all the teachers have access to the contact of the students and their parents. However, we(the teachers) are not allowed to share their data within the school community with the other parents, without their permission consent. Thank you.

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