Edublogs webinar overview – A cuckoo free Twitter nest!


It’s that time of year again! Over the next few weeks timezone chaos will reign. Half the world goes onto daylight saving and half comes off daylight saving. Except for a few regions such as here in Western Australia where we don’t have daylight saving. Just to make it even more complicated different places change on different dates. This is one of the main reasons we use GMT/UTC for our webinar times – because (like our West Australian time, but with much more “credibility”) it stays the same all year round.

If you have just lost or gained an hour then double check the times for anything trans-global in which you are involved. In the Northern Hemisphere you are heading back into winter so will “lose” an hour when your clocks are set back, thus our webinars will be an hour earlier “your time”. In the Southern Hemisphere you are going forward into summer so you “gain” an hour resulting in webinars an hour later “your time”

(For the link for live webinars and info about the times and topics scroll to the bottom of this post)


It’s a long time since we had a session related to Twitter and as there seem to have been several waves of spam DMs around recently it seemed a good idea to take a look as some of the strategies we can use to help guard against becoming victims of the people in “black hats”. In other words to stop cuckoos laying their ph*shing eggs in our Twitter nests!

The session

In this recorded session I started with a few questions about how the group uses Twitter. Sometimes our own usage patterns can put our accounts at greater risk of attack – some of these patterns were raised in these initial questions. We then moved on to use the whiteboard to share some of our individual thoughts on the risks posed by attacks on our Twitter accounts.

Next we thought – again using the whiteboard about potentially suspicious Twitter activity that might set our own “alarm bells” ringing.

This included sharing my personal “alarm bells” that have emerged over 4 years and approaching 20,000 tweets.

Next came a look at what to do about these activities – the fake DMs and other potential issues. Catch the recording for the full strategies! One of my main concerns in this is that if you get a fake DM please don’t blame the messenger (ie DON’T block & report) – it could be you next time! We are all vulnerable to attack – if we take some precautions we become less so, but it only takes a moment’s inattention or just something that we don’t know about and those fake DMs could be going out from our accounts! For me personally I think my most effective strategy has been close management of my followers and being careful who I follow!

We finished up with a look at our best take-aways!


A good session – Twitter is a topic that I always enjoy discussing and I do have strong feelings about the community supporting one-another in combating the “black hats”. Over the four years I have been tweeting I have worked out my own strategies to deal with some of the issues that arise and I think it is important to share these widely.

If you have something to share either about Twitter safety strategies or anything you would like to present a webinar on please let us know (add a comment to this post, or Tweet us – @JoHart or @philhart). Then join us to facilitate a session about your e-edu passion! If you are not familiar with BlackboardCollaborate we can help you plan how best to do your session so it works for you.

Our Next Session

Our next Webinar is an Edublogs “Serendipity” session where we invite you to suggest your “hot” topics for discussion – we then select the topic by poll.  Join us on Thursday October 11th at 23:00 GMT/UTC the time for you will vary depending on your timezone (check yours here) Thursday afternoon/evening in the USA, late night Thursday in Europe, and Friday morning October 12th in Australia – in the usual Blackboard Collaborate virtual room.

Edublogs Webinar overview – Twitter 201


This session came about because I have noticed lot of  relatively new Tweeters following me recently & also had to do a very quick “Twitter 101” of the basics for a colleague just starting to tweet. This started me thinking about what happens next, once people have started to tweet, know about @, DM and RT and have joined conversations. It seemed to be time to talk about Twitter again. Twitter is one of our recurring themes, we have had 3 former webinars on Twitter, two of them back in November of 2009 where we looked at managing your Twitter account for security in “Twitter – a clean nest” and Shelly Terrell gave us a session on using Tweetdeck. In 2010 we discussed whether there should be “rules” for using Twitter. So in this session we looked at Twitter just little beyond the basics of tweeting.

The Session

As usual we recorded the session (please let me know if you access it). There was a lot of discussion throughout – especially in text but also with audio. We started with a look at what people would like to take away from the session and moved on to where we were all coming from with Twitter. Most of us already had quite a lot of Twitter experience, but that some were very new to Twitter.

We moved on to look at desktop clients, using Twitter from a phone. I App Shared my own Tweetdeck for illustrating and discussing some of the planned points and those raised throughout. This included putting out a #SerendipEd tagged tweet to my PLN for their top Twitter tips that were instantly displayed in the #SerendipEd column on Tweetdeck for everyone to see.

The discussion moved on to lists, how we use them how others use them, the usefulness or otherwise of automatically generated lists. This moved us into a quick look at account security and management to reduce the risk of scams, hacking and phishing.

TakeawaysWordleResizeThe last parts of the session were:

  • a challenge to do something different with Twitter this week and tweet about it using the hashtag #SerendipEd our tag for the Serendipity and FineFocus webinars
  • a look at our best “takeways” from the session

The “takeways” is always a really interesting question as it is sometimes the unexpected as in this session where the security aspect was the best “takeaway” for several people .


This session seemed to go extremely well despite my own doubts as always that it might be too “me centric”.  I always enjoy discussing Twitter and its potential because I use it so much and have gained so much from it in terms of establishing, and learning from, my own PLN.

Next Webinar

SerendipitybsmallOur next session is an Edublogs “Serendipity” session on Thursday April 28th at 23:00 GMT/UTC (Afternoon/Evening USA) or Friday April 29th at 7am West Aus, mid morning Eastern States Aus depending on your timezone (check yours here) – in the usual Elluminate room. This is one of our fortnightly unconference sessions where we invite you to bring along your “hot topics” and “burning issues” for our poll on the topic of the day. If you want to propose a topic in advance then visit the Serendipity Wallwisher and add your topic.