The New Technology Spectrum: From Embarrassment to Pride

February 15, 2008 at 12:29 am 4 comments

According to CNET News, many people are embarrassed to admit that they use dating sites, even though the numbers indicate heavy use. Many people use Wikipedia too, but a well-known researcher sheepishly admitted in an email to me that he uses it all the time for “basic science stuff”. And many people read the Dummies book series, but don’t boast about it, as I discovered in an email confession, “I hate to admit my secret: WordPress for Dummies.”

If the embarrassment end of the spectrum is the use of certain types of web sites and sources of information, then at the pride end are thin devices (yes, people still proudly display their phones and cameras), successful social networking (lots of connections and recommendations), and being invited to tape a Comedy Central segment after posting YouTube videos. Personally, I am proud to have authored a Wikipedia entry (but that might be different than using Wikipedia as a reference) and to carry a thin phone.

Entry filed under: Web 2.0. Tags: , , .

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4 Comments Add your own

  • […] Frank Kelly wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptAccording to CNET News, many people are embarrassed to admit that they use dating sites, even though the numbers indicate heavy use (“online dating and personals will increase from $900M in 2007 to $1.9B in 2012? according to Jupiter … […]

  • 2. Mike Gualtieri  |  February 17, 2008 at 10:43 pm

    I confess. I am the one who bought and read “WordPress for Dummies”.

  • 3. Hakon Heimer  |  February 17, 2008 at 12:15 am

    PS: I should learn ho too spel my owwn nam! 😉

  • 4. Hakon Himer  |  February 17, 2008 at 12:14 am

    I’m more impressed with Wikipedia’s content than I used to be, but there are still problems with it. As a science editor with graduate-level training, I can use it to look up something that I sort of know the answer to. It’s a bit like referring to an old textbook–you don’t quite remember the info, but you know what you’re looking for. And you can spot when an entry seems incomplete or inaccurate.

    The problem is for people who haven’t had any previous training in a given area. They don’t now when things are slanted or incomplete. But as I said, as more and more scientists seem to be taking the time to edit science entries on Wikipedia, they are getting more accurate. You just have to watch out for the ones that cite a couple of papers from 1973 as the main sources!

    I’m curious to see what will happen when competing research groups use the entries to duel over whose theory is right. But maybe the Wikipedians have ways to detect and deal with that.


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Lisa Gualtieri, PhD, ScM

Lisa GualtieriLisa Gualtieri is Assistant Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine in the Department of Public Health and Community Medicine. She is Director of the Certificate Program in Digital Health Communication. Lisa teaches Designing Health Campaigns using Social Media, Social Media and Health, Mobile Health Design, and Digital Strategies for Health Communication. Contact Lisa:


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