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Joined: 14 Dec 2013
Gender: Male
Posts: 293

08 Aug 2015, 12:16 am

Hi everyone, I'm a psychologist specializing in ASD. I want to develop some trainings for teens and adults on the spectrum on how to use social media safely to build and maintain relationships with others. I have a few ideas already on topics to discuss, but I thought I'd ask if any of you had any:
-Tips for newbies - things that maybe weren't obvious to you at first, but you wish someone had told you.
-Horror stories - things that happened (mistakes you made, or people who hurt you in some way on social media).
-Suggestions for other important topics
-Resources - that you may have found particularly helpful in learning to use social media effectively.

I'd also love some feedback if anyone has any about the topics I plan to cover. Here are some:
Advantages / importance of social media
- Part of my audience will be parents of teens with ASD, so I want to discuss how excluding your child from social media may potentially handicap them socially. Social media presence is increasingly an important part of maintaining friendships. Opting out may mean opting out of friendships, party invitations, romantic relationships, etc.

- Verifying people's identity to avoid scammers
- Avoiding/dealing with cyberbullies
- Avoiding saying things that could get you in trouble with law enforcement
- Recognizing that some things you post may stick around and may have future consequences for employment, friendships, etc.
- Essentially you have to know your audience, and often your audience is different and much larger than you would think.

Social skills
- Understanding the other user's experience - if you 'like' 50 posts in someone's history all at once, their feed will show a flood of your name, which they may interpret as annoying, or creepy stalking behavior.
- Waiting a reasonable amount of time for responses - people have many potential reasons for not responding immediately to a post or comment. It is best to assume the best and be patient.
- Recruiting help when needed - one of the great things about social media is that it is a slow form of communication, so it is possible to ask others for their opinion before you say something you may regret.
- Training wheels are ok - Many parents are very concerned about their teens using social media. I would like to suggest that they could use a probationary period where they make a deal to allow social media provided that the parent can review and discuss the communications with the teen. In this way the teens can get to interact with their peers, at least to some degree and parents don't have to worry as much. Indeed it's a great tool for learning since there is a record of exactly what happened that can then be reviewed and discussed to avoid and understand mistakes. Once parents feel more confident they can let their kids operate independently and only help when asked.

Any feedback (including scathing criticism) is welcome. Thanks!


Joined: 14 Aug 2015
Age: 29
Posts: 9
Location: Los Angeles

14 Aug 2015, 6:13 am

It is very good idea, you should try to do it.