I was on a break from my 2016 planning yesterday when a teachable moment happened. My 78-year-old dad (I call him Papa) sat down with us in the dining table to ask about social media.
My Papa is one who never tired of learning (he reads everyday). He also asks questions on some things that he gets from TV that he does not understand (that is why he knows Katy Perry exists). What was amusing was the teachable moment: a moment in time that can happen to anyone. It was more special to me as a virtual professional, as my Papa need not to wait for me to come home from work to ask the questions. (Heck, he may forget asking it as he may feel it’s bothersome to ask since I would be tired from the holiday commercialism traffic, as I call it these days.)
Here was how the teachable moment took place (I translated our conversation in English for you, non-connoisseurs).
Papa: I read something in the news and I saw the word ‘hashtag’. What is a hashtag?
Me: Hashtag is a combination of a pound sign and words that symbolizes a topic. It was popularized on Twitter. Remember when you go to the library and check the index cards? That’s how hashtag works; you look for a topic that everyone is talking about.
Papa: What is Twitter?
Me: Twitter is an online social network that enables users to post what you feel or think in just 140 characters.
Papa: Is that different from Facebook?
Me: Yes. In Facebook, you can post longer messages. But you can post photos and videos in both.
Papa: What is Instagram?
Me: Instagram is also a social network online that lets you post photos and videos. (Take note that I did not mention “filter” as I don’t want to bombard him with too many terms). Collectively, they are called social media.
Papa: What is bashing?
Me: Bashing is criticizing someone. The term is also used in social media when someone is thrown criticisms. Anyone can give criticism because it is online. The person doing the bashing is called a basher. Some people who are subjected to bashing often ignore it. But some fight back. Case in point: Sharon Cuneta (Sorry, Megastar. I got you in my mind first. But kudos for fighting back.)
Papa: Can bashers be stopped?
Me: Yes. They can be blocked or reported. When you block someone, that person will no longer see your posts. When you report someone, the social network will review your complaint. Social networks have these features.
Papa: What is hacking?
Me: Hacking is getting an unauthorized access online – from email to social media. It is like an intruder getting inside a house and stealing. Do you remember what happened to Maine Mendoza’s Twitter account? A group of people was able to get access inside her Twitter account and she did not know. (Joy Bautista-Collado and I shared tips on how to prevent hacking in one of our The Joy and Ann Show Podcasts. Check it out here.)
Papa: What is Google? Is that social media, too?
Me: Google is a search engine. Anything that man asks (except the meaning of life) can be searched in Google.
Papa: Is that where you do, what do you call that… browsing?
Me: Yes, just like what you do when you read the newspaper.
Papa: Are those terms in the dictionary? Dictionaries must be so outdated nowadays.
Me: Yes, those terms are in the dictionary. I can look it up for you online then show it to you. You won’t find the terms that you asked in our physical dictionary. Besides, I think Webster isn’t printing any dictionaries anymore.
Papa: Ok. Thank for you for explaining!
Teachable moments can happen to you. And it is my Christmas prayer that soon, you would be able to be present in these moments.
Merry Christmas, everyone!
PS: My site is still under construction, so I hope you will bear with me. It comes with the changes. But I am sooo learning Page Builder and Jetpack and all other stuff. You will soon see my exceptional site up and running! In the meantime, Joy and I created a site for our podcast. Wow, I can not believe I just myself such! Check out our site here.