I agree with Mitchell when he said that the thought of trying to cultivating an “online” personality and a “real life” persona sounds exhausting. And reading about Sarah’s evolution in becoming her authentic awesome self, I relate to that as well. I hopped on line to social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. to keep up with my students, and my own children. But stayed online and connected for me. In many ways, connecting with old friends and family on social media helped me form a bond with them I would not have otherwise had. My cousins are spread throughout the US, so Facebook was a way to connect with all of them, AND we actually got my grandma on for a bit, which she found perplexing, but enjoyable (mainly, she would go on Facebook to chide us for not calling her enough). Then I started connecting with high school classmates, wow. Social constructs that existed in high school suddenly disappeared, and I had meaningful conversations with members of my class that deepened into true friendships irl. That would NOT have happened without social media.
Another cool thing happened to me as I searched the internet and ventured into social media: I found my authentic self. I found that my opinion was valid and valued in public forums, not just among my family and friends. This gave me increased confidence. I found a way to express who I am professionally as well, I created classes for older dislocated workers who needed to learn to go online and look for jobs. Then I created an online class, which turned into a book, and so on. So while many people venture cautiously on to social platforms, and caution is warranted to a certain extent, I journey forward into new technology with a sense of enthusiasm. I have enjoyed my time online and have discovered so many new abilities. I’ve also uncovered some mad skills in my social media game that have helped take my self confidence to fun new levels. So bring on the new technology! I’ll probably flail around a bit, but eventually I’ll get it.