25 Days of CoDI: Day 18

On the eighteenth day of CoDI, Nicola got me wondering what she would find if she googled me…

Nicola Osborne: If I Googled You, What Would I Find?

Odds are there is something about you on the internet… But, did you share it? Did someone else? And what are those tracks and traces saying about you?

Tell us a bit about yourself…N Osborne

Well, first of all I am Nicola Osborne.  I work as Digital Education Manager and Service Manager at EDINA, based at the University of Edinburgh. My role essentially means I get to work on lots of really interesting innovative technology, as well as education projects. These include citizen science, mobile apps, etc.  My background and research interest is around social media and how we present ourselves and engage online.

So what brings you to CoDI, or rather what do you bring to it?

In my CODI 2016 show – my fourth! – I’m going to be talking about the tracks and trails we all leave behind online. I’ll explore how they get there, what they say about us, and some of the ways we can manage our digital footprints more effectively.The show is also an opportunity to share some of what we have learned from the recent (2014-) “Managing Your Digital Footprint” research we’ve Digital Footprint been undertaking at the University of Edinburgh. In that project we’ve been asking our students how they use social media, how they manage and think about their online presence, and what that means for teaching and support practices.

One of the things I’m keen to share in my show is the choice and opportunities that social media and online presences can provide. My own life has been improved immeasurably by the people and information I’ve connected to through web and social media activity.

But, of course, I’ll have a few scarier stories too. It can be very easy to forget how often we share or volunteer information about ourselves in the course of our daily life, while accessing the internet. Consequently, we don’t always think about what we’ve agreed to share, or what footprint we are leaving behind…

Care to expand?

For instance, if you (or your kids) play Pokemon Go, the hit game of the summer, you’ll have been asked to agree to:

1. share your personal data, including your date of birth;
2. ensure that your personal data is accurate – and that you commit to keep it up to date in the future;
3. you agree for any message you send or receive to other players to be stored for as long as the good folks at Pokemon decide is suitable;
4. you share your IP address,
5. you share the unique identifier for your mobile device;
6. you share your location data which you agree to let Pokemon Go share with other users of the game…

When you put it like that…

And you do that in exchange to download a “free” app. An app that essentially lets you chase and challenge cute animated characters around town on your phone. The game seems awesome. I can’t deny it’s very entertaining watching folk out and about playing it in the Edinburgh sunshine. But maybe you didn’t know about all of the date you were sharing when signing up to those terms? Maybe you just hit the big Approve button? It is always the tempting offer…

Between our social media profiles, gaming profiles, public information about us, and our browsing, buying and clicking habits, most of us that live at least part of our lives online are building up complex “digital footprints” – tracks and traces of ourselves that tell a story about who we are, what we do, what we care about… But how accurate is that picture? When did you last search for yourself online? Do you like what you see?Nicola @ CoDI15

So what are you most looking forward to about taking part in you know, your FOURTH CoDI?

In the show I’m looking forward to sharing some of the ways our digital tracks and traces matter. I’ll be exploring how they represent us and how we can make more informed choices presenting ourselves online. And I’m particularly excited to hear from my lovely audience about their own experiences, concerns and some silly stories too!

So, in conclusion,  If I Googled you, what would I find? Join me on 21st August for some thrills, spills and ideas for managing your digital footprint more effectively!

Nicola’s show takes place on Sunday 21st August, Stand in the Square (Venue 372), 3-4pm, £8 (£6)

Purchase tickets at: http://www.outstandingtickets.com/show/115/performance/1550/book-tickets