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Ohio Union goes ‘Digital’

Katie Ramsey / Lantern photographer

People with various degrees of expertise in digital media gathered this weekend to share the benefits of technology and social media at a conference hosted by the Center for the Study and Teaching of Writing.

The third annual Digital Media in a Social World Conference took place Friday in the US Bank Conference Theatre at the Ohio Union. Sessions continued Saturday in Mendenhall Laboratory.

The conference offered a variety of sessions featuring student organizations using digital media and the uses of technology in the classroom and the professional world with social media such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Doug Dangler, associate director of the CSTW and a conference organizer, welcomed an audience of students, instructors and community members to begin the opening session.

The opening session included a message about the importance of digital media from Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee. Keynote speaker Mark Frauenfelder, founder of the blog BoingBoing.net, followed Gee with a speech about do-it-yourself projects and self-education.

Many presenters focused on whether social media should be implemented in the classroom and if this is something students would appreciate.

Bob Eckhart, an instructor for the English as a Second Language Composition Program and a presenter at the conference, said his students benefit from the use of technology in the classroom.

“Ohio State has done a lot more with technology in the last 18 years, and I think the students enjoy it. That’s the way the students are accustomed to learning,” Eckhart said.

Student organizations shared opportunities to use social media to get more involved on campus. Ohio Union Television, one of these student groups, discussed how it uses video content.

“Digital media makes the world such a small place that we can get our word out,” said Jess Ostrau, a third-year in journalism and a presenter for Ohio Union Television.

The use of media can benefit on campus as well as around the community.

“We want to inform people about what’s going on at the Union but also make our way in Columbus and get to know our city,” Ostrau said.

Eric Langenderfer, a fourth-year in chemistry, recently took a class that focused on digital media. Langenderfer said he decided to attend the conference after hearing about the event through the Digital Union.

“I think it’s important that we, as a generation, have a voice in that,” Langenderfer said.

The Lantern was represented at the conference, taking part in a lecture titled, “Using Social Media Effectively in Newsgathering and Storytelling: Verification is key.”

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