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La Roche University
Virtual Communities and Social Media
Module 2 – Activities
Virtual Communities and Ethical Values in the Digital Frontier
MODULE OBJECTIVES
After completing this module, students should be able to:
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Identify and understand moral frameworks and normative principles that could
govern online behavior (CO2, CO5).
Use moral frameworks, normative principles, and religious values to explain
proper online behavior (CO2, CO5).
Develop and use Social Network accounts like Facebook and LinkedIn (CO3,
CO4).
Compare two social network sites (CO3).
Contribute to your reflective journal (blog).
OUTLINE
Virtual Communities and Ethical Values in the Digital Frontier
Lessing’s Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace (laws, social norms, market, and
architecture)
Selected Moral Frameworks and Concepts (utilitarianism, moral duty, fidelity,
justice, autonomy, etc.)
Impact on Civic Participation (Calvin’s Study)
Impact of religious values on virtual communities
Social Networks – Facebook & LinkedIn
READINGS:
ASHA (2020). Issues in Ethics: Ethical Use of Social Media.
https://www.asha.org/Practice/ethics/Ethical-Use-of-Social-Media?/
Berkley Forum (2021). Is Social Media Ethical?
https://berkleycenter.georgetown.edu/posts/is-social-media-ethical
Johnson, C. (2016). How social media can make us question our moral values.
Deseret News. https://www.deseret.com/2016/4/26/20587303/how-social-media-canmake-us-question-our-moral-values
Lichterman, J. (2014). It’s alive! What NPR learned from turning its @nprnews
Twitter account from a bot into a human. http://www.niemanlab.org/2014/05/itsalive-what-npr-learned-from-turning-its-nprnews-twitter-account-from-a-bot-into-ahuman/
Marsh, J. (2016). Woman faces jail for tagging former in-law on Facebook.
http://nypost.com/2016/01/14/woman-faces-year-in-jail-for-tagging-ex-in-law-onfacebook/ (Links to an external site.)
Spinello, R. (2021). Cyberethics, “Chapter One: The Internet and Ethical
Values.” Textbook PowerPoint located in CANVAS, Module 2
Thigpen, L. (2019). Christians and Social Media: Your Spiritual Disciplines are on
Display. https://intersectproject.org/faith-and-culture/christians-social-media-spiritualdisciplines-display/
Review the Lecture PowerPoint – Chapter 1 Morality-Law located in CANVAS, Module
2.
Optional Readings:
Bossmann, J. (2016). Top 9 ethical issues in artificial intelligence.
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/10/top-10-ethical-issues-in-artificialintelligence/
Gershbein, C. (2017). The Chief Social Officer (CSO).
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-chief-social-officer-_b_8445536
Stahl, B. (2021). Ethical Issues of AI.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7968615/
ASSIGNMENTS:
1. Discussion Forum: Mod2-1 Ethical Values
DIRECTIONS:
• Read Spinello, Chapter 1 and view this
YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wiVz0Ig7JTc . Select one of the
questions below under QUESTIONS. You will not see others’ posts until you
make your initial post.
• Research your response to the question, think about it, and make your initial
post by Wednesday at midnight.
• Your post should be concise and to the point. Answer the question; support
your argument or opinion with examples, experience and resources as
appropriate; and use correct grammar. Post to Mod2-1- Discussion ForumEthical Values.
• Respond to classmates’ posts – at least 2 responses on 2 different threads. Do
not simply say I agree but explain your response. Pay attention to the Module
deadlines.
QUESTIONS: Select one question for a post. Note: Respond to other posts on a
different question.
1. What ethical policy would you prescribe for yourself to govern your online
2.
3.
4.
5.
behavior in a virtual community? Explain your precepts clearly and discuss why
you believe each precept to be important in a virtual community. Provide at least
one resource used other than the required readings.
Use one moral framework from Spinello, Chapter 1. Answer the question How
would you describe how one should behave in a virtual community using that
concept? No two students are to pick the same moral framework concept; first
come, first serve. Provide another resource that clarifies this framework.
Review and consider the Lichterman article above. Answer the question How
does using a bot versus a human change human interaction? What are the
ethical implications of engaging online with a bot rather than a human? Does this
change how one should behave in an online community? Can the continued
discussion of viral news content on sites like NPR or Huffington Post still qualify
as a community even when the dialogue is primarily between a bot and the
readers instead of the human writers and editors and their readers?
Review and consider the article Gershbein above under Optional Readings. How
would you side for or against organizations/businesses hiring a chief social media
officer? Support your stand with appropriate resources.
Review and consider the Bossmann or Stahl article above under Optional
Readings. What impact do you believe artificial intelligence has and will have on
virtual communities and explain your answer? How does this affect our ethics?
2. Comparison –Mod2-2-Comparison Social Networks
PURPOSE: The purpose of this activity is to compare two social networking sites Facebook and LinkedIn – using appropriate criteria and logic.
DIRECTIONS:
• Read Chapter 1 in the Miller ( in Module 2) and the Lenhard article also found in
the Module 2 OR look at this site
http://webtrends.about.com/od/socialnetworking/u/list-of-social-networksguide.htm for similar content on social networking basics, Facebook and LinkedIn
(under business networks).
• Read Pew Research Fact Sheet (2021). https://www.pewresearch.org/internet/factsheet/social-media/ OR look at this site
http://webtrends.about.com/od/socialnetworking/u/list-of-social-networksguide.htm . for similar content on social networking basics.
• Review at least 2 of the videos at this link
http://www.gcflearnfree.org/socialmedia/facebook101 regarding Facebook and
2 from the LinkedIn series at
https://www.linkedin.com/learning/search?keywords=social%20media&u=2610
6634 NOTE: Create an account using your LRU email and you will have access to
the videos and courses for free.
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Develop criteria on which to evaluate the two social networking sites. What is
critical to you when selecting a social networking site? What features are
essential to you? You must identify at least 5 criteria.
Why did you pick those criteria?
Compare the two sites on those criteria.
Submit your comparison (Assignment Mod2-2-Social Media Comparison) in a
Word document using a three-column table with the first column the criteria,
and the 2nd and 3rd columns the social networking sites. Make a
recommendation on one of those. This is not a description of the social media
but an evaluative statement on how it meets the criteria.
Go to the assignment link in this module and upload the file calling it Mod2Yourlastname (that is your last name not the words yourlastname).
3. Journal 2 via Blog. Complete your journal entry for Module 2 as per the Journal
Directions file. Make sure you make your journal entry in the Blog on CANVAS. What
did you learn in this module? How might you use that learning? What other
resources did you find that were interesting/helpful? How do you relate this to
offline communities?
SCORING RUBRIC: Module 2 Activities
CRITERION
DISCUSSION POSTS Mod2-1
Completeness in responding to question
(1); selected one of the questions listed
(1).
Quality of response to the question
3=Above average; 2=average; 1=below
average
Comments to other post (at least 2
other student posts) – 1 point each
Supporting resources
Timeliness of post
Subtotal
COMPARISON Mod2-2
Selected 5 appropriate criteria for
comparison (1 point for each)
Explained the rationale behind the
criteria
Compared the sites using the criteria
5=comparative statement on each
criterion
4=missing one comparative statement
on one criterion
3=missing two comparative statements
on two criteria
2=missing three comparative
statements on three criteria
1=did not include criteria with
comparisons
Used Word table feature for comparison
– 3 columns
Submitted through the assignments
feature by due date
Subtotal
Module 2 Total
Comments:
POSSIBLE POINTS
2
3
2
2
1
10
5
2
5
2
1
15
25
YOUR SCORE

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