I’ve been thinking about this question lately: Do I use Twitter for self-promotion? I will often share the work I am doing with colleagues throughout my district and beyond. Is this self-promotion? I think it comes down to the intention behind the tweet. If the intention is always “Hey world! Look at me!”, then I get it. Oversharing what you’re doing, and never shifting the focus to the work and ideas of others, is annoying to followers and verges on narcissism.
Personally, it is rarely my intention to cast the spotlight on myself. Note my use of the word rarely. I firmly believe that the occasional tweet intended to self-promote, is completely appropriate. Obviously, I want people to read this post, that’s why I blog, so I’m going to tweet about it. Is this self-promotion? Sure. Should I feel guilty? Absolutely not. Why wouldn’t I utilize the most effective method I have to reach others? I want people to read what I write, so I’m going to leverage technology to promote my thoughts and ideas in hopes that sharing will have a positive impact on readers, or at the very least, start a dialogue.
Although I am suggesting that a small degree of self-promotion is appropriate, these types of tweets represent a very small percentage of what I share. What I choose to share on social media is almost always guided by inclusivity, not self-indulgence. I don’t want to draw attention to me; I want to draw attention to the work of others, or inject my own thoughts and ideas to promote conversation. My intention is always to have a positive impact on teachers and students, and to grow capacity.
Occasionally, I also hear others say that teachers only use Twitter to look good for administration. Again, for the most part, this isn’t at all accurate. I believe that critics tend to be overly dismissive because it’s easier, rather than to step out of comfort zones. Transparency is difficult. Working within the confines of your classroom is much easier. Critics may also not see the point in sharing what they do. I find this reluctance is often the product of the mindset that they don’t have anything worthwhile to share, but often the act of sharing will be meant with unexpected consequences stemming from a community populated with well-intentioned teachers.
Thanks for reading. I’m going to tweet this now. 🙂