Social media lent 2020

As last year, I resolved to keep an unconventional lent: to refrain from contributing to twitter (and limit my facebook time to 15 minutes a day). Why twitter specifically? A couple of points

  • in March 2017 we acquired a cute terrier (Tess) from the dog trust, and I joined twitter. My productivity went down from this time – so I need to check whether its Tess who is at fault or rather twitter use
  • Last year was particularly vicious on twitter.
    • The worst experience resolved around a comment relating to REF. Indicating the simple truth that any internal peer review is gender biased (just put “gender bias in internal performance evaluation” into your favourite search machine, if you have not worked in anti-discrimination law and policy for the last 30 years, and know the literature anyway), I was subjected to a threat with legal action and altogether 6 hours disciplinary discussion.  The persons subjecting me to the discussion declared was wholly to avoid disciplinary procedures – not having won € lotto yet and having experienced UCU representation in pre-disciplinary action, I complied. Eerily, the person who threatened legal action is not on twitter – so I am spied upon on that medium by anonymous forces. I also must declare (to avoid further legal action) that the fact that any REF input I submitted for evaluation after the fact was rated not above 3* (which means its unsubmittable), and an input graded 4* before was downgraded to 3*+ (just submittable ) is unrelated to all this. Also, I must declare the that pre-disciplinary action was wholly unrelated to the threat with legal action ( this is so although both had the same aim – requiring me to give “evidence” supporting the statement)
    • the second worse experience is the constant mansplaining, and denigrating of any serious input. There are particular tweeters which put a negative spin on anything I do, and this just eats more time and energy I have. Again, to avoid another threat of legal action, I should declare that my time is never impacted upon gender biased workload allocation… And I have to submit that a female tendency to take teaching seriously affects my workload. As a module leader, I was left speechless by a lecturer’s declaration “I am not updating these slides” (these were slides on one of the EU economic freedoms which omitted any Grand Chamber ruling issued after 2004).
  • As a consequence of both the above,  I need to find out what (if anything) I want from my twitter profile. I must admit I am finding twitter quite informative and interesting. I also have this psychological layout urging me to contribute to a platform from which I profit. Again, other just exploit it… and only contribute if self-advertising. We shall see. I first need to assess whether refraining from twitter increases my productivity. Possibly see you all again after Easter.

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