2017 #SMSociety Theme: Social Media for Social Good or Evil

Our online behaviour is far from virtual–it extends our offline lives. Much social media research has identified the positive opportunities of using social media; for example, how people use social media to form support groups online, participate in political uprising, raise money for charities, extend teaching and learning outside the classroom, etc. However, mirroring offline experiences, we have also seen social media being used to spread propaganda and misinformation, recruit terrorists, live stream criminal activities, reinforce echo chambers by politicians, and perpetuate hate and oppression (such as racist, sexist, homophobic, and anti-Semitic behaviour).

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Sunday, July 30 • 14:00 - 15:00
Panel 5D: Connected Lives For Seniors And Immigrants: Wearables, Apps, And Social Media Barriers And Opportunities

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Panel Speakers: Anabel Quan-Haase, Barry Wellman, Kendra Kamp, Guang Ying Mo and Sanja Vico

Abstract: The present panel brings together scholars who investigate the uses and social consequences of wearables, apps, and social media in the lives of older adults and immigrants. The panel will specifically draw on standpoint theory as developed by Dorothy Smith (1990). Standpoint theory proposes that depending on our background, gender, socioeconomic status, and age we view and understand society from different social locations. Often the view of dominant social groups is given more relevance and marginalized groups are less well understood. We adopt standpoint theory to examine how older adults are portrayed in the mainstream culture and how potential biases may also influence scholarship examining older adults. We present five papers, each drawing on a different data set, to explore different dimensions of how older adults integrate wearables, apps, and social media into their everyday life patterns and rhythms (Khosravi, et al., 2016). We argue that older adults can greatly benefit from using wearables, apps, and social media, but that this use needs to be on their own terms (Quan-Haase et al., 2016a). We hope to gain a better understanding of the complexities of aging and the intersection with wearables, apps, and social media by looking at diverse data sets and drawing conclusions across studies and tools. 

Each presenter will contribute through a paper based on original empirical work with older adults or immigrants as the population of study. Each presenter will describe the methodology utilized in the study as well as the key findings and implications for theory and policy concerning older adults.

Sunday July 30, 2017 14:00 - 15:00 EDT
TRS 1-077- 7th Flr Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University 55 Dundas Street West, Toronto, ON M5G 2C19