Sunday, September 8, 2013

Twitter and Blog Policy

The rapid expansion of social media—including its use by instructors in the classroom—has blurred the lines between public and privates lives of professors. Although I firmly believe in a strict separation between my personal preferences and what I teach in the classroom, I am active on Twitter and in blogging, two of the most prominent forms of social media, so students can easily find out what I think about various issues. I consider it necessary, then, to set out a coherent guideline for these media.

I use both primarily for analytical commentary, and students who are interested in more discussion and debate on issues related to international relations and Middle East politics are welcome, if they wish, to subscribe to my Twitter feed and blogs.

Students are also welcome to respond to any tweets or blog posts. I expect respectful, reasoned responses or posts, without profanity; any violation of these guidelines will result in the student being blocked in the relevant method. 

I must emphasize that this is not mandatory—it is not even “optional” in the context of the course. I mention this as a general comment only, in the context of a public domain that now encompasses the university and the classroom. Students’ grades are not in any way connected to this.

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