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Social Media Issue VOL. 3 / ISSUE 013 / WINTER 2011

ethos + amoibe + ekklesia values + change + community

Students on campuses across America are making a difference. The Fraternal Values Society gives them a place to gather, argue, discover, and plan.

You can be a founding member. Want to be challenged? Follow the QR. Try something new. Our future depends on new thinking.


the inside starts here


Growing Your Organization’s Social Media Strategy


Putting Twitter to Work for You


Andy Huston + North-American Interfraternity Conference + @hust0058

Andy Huston will convince you that a social media plan is both needed and can be done well. You may think you’ve got Facebook figured out, but you’ll be surprised at what you’ve been missing all along.

Jesse Koch + Bradley University + @JesseKoch

Jesse Koch teaches you how to use Twitter in ways that would make Ashton Kutcher blush. Build your Twitter follower base and relearn how to generate tweetworhty buzz that’s about more than your next social event.

Plugged In

Emily Perlow + Worcester Polytechnic Institute + @WPI_SAO

Emily Perlow comments on the “30-second sound byte culture” that has been created by social networking sites and gives advice about how your chapter and council can capitalize on this new culture.

COLUMNS 002 // letter from the executive director 002 // letter from the editor 016 // from the road 018 // facilitation 411 020 // ask the experts 022 // the wall 023 // tips to avoid cyberstalking 024 // taking action: a blogger’s call to action 026 // busted! 029 // one more thing

Connections is the official publication of the Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values. The views expressed by contributors, authors and advertisers are not necessarily those of the Association. AFLV encourages the submission of content to: Lea Hanson Director of Publications connections@aflv.org Submit advertising queries to: Mark Koepsell Executive Director mark@aflv.org 970/372.1174 888/855.8670 info@aflv.org

Connections is published four times each year. Submission Deadlines: Spring 2011: Programming : February 21 Summer 2011: History : June 27 Fall 2011: Lifelong Membership : August 29 Winter 2012: 365 Recruitment : December 5 Send address corrections to: Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values 420 South Howes Bldg B; Suite 200 Fort Collins, CO 80524 970/372.1174 888/855.8670 info@aflv.org

Creative Director / Layout & Design Steve Whitby / Warehouse 242 swhitby@mac.com Editorial Board Andrea Battaglia / Drury University Ryan Hilperts / AFLV Andrew Hohn / University of Illinois, Urbana-Chapaign Carol Preston / Wittenberg University Teniell Trolian / Kent State University Viancca Williams / University of South Florida

Member / Fraternity Communications Association

AFLV // 001

Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Texting, interactive profiles, web 2.0, web 3.0, smartphones, tablets, netbooks, cloud computing, and so much more. These are terms and tools that have become important parts of our everyday lives. Look at any person under the age of 25 and it seems their smartphone is an appendage that is permanently attached like an arm or a leg (heck, I’m well over the age of 25 and have been accused of the same). Intentionality in the use of all this technology is key to success within our organizations. With every advance comes some amount of challenge, and proactively managing those is also important. And lest we forget – our organizations were built on the concepts of brotherhood and sisterhood. I’ve yet to be convinced that true brother/sisterhood can exist without good old fashioned, face to face, person to person communication, interaction, and relationships. I am a true believer in technology enhancing our experiences, and like so many other things in life, doing so without losing the true essence of who we are and the foundation on which we are built is of utmost importance. I already can’t wait to read this issue in five years and laugh at everything we think is so leading edge right now. That’s a fact in the fast paced world of technology in which we live. So here’s to this issue helping you make the most of your fraternal experiences with the assistance of technology – at least for the next 12-18 months. Then, this whole thing will be outdated!

Executive Director Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values @ koepsell

002 // connections // 2011 • winter

Social networking has gone from a great way to cyberspy on high school acquaintances to an uber-necessary component of marketing and communication. And, we’re not just talking about how important it is to refrain from putting up the risky photos. Chapters, councils, communities, and inter/national organizations are using Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites to promote events, stay connected with their membership, and simply keep members interested and involved. Although social networking for the purpose of marketing and communication may be seen by some as being old news now that it’s 2011 and all of our moms are on Facebook, the opportunities are really multiplying faster than they ever have. Today’s college students have grown up using a computer as one of the main mediums for communicating with others, but that doesn’t mean they are experts in marketing and communication. This issue highlights ways popular social networking mediums can be used to best serve the needs of today’s fraternity and sorority. Seriously, you may feel like an expert on Facebook and Twitter since you spend so much of your day utilizing them, but you will definitely learn from these articles.

Editor Connections Magazine @leahanson

Letter from the Editor

Letter from the Executive Director

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think about Fraternity and Sorority in the 21st Century? For me, it’s the impact of technology on the fraternal experience. It’s got its benefits and its drawbacks, but like it or not, technology is a huge part of our daily lives and of course, our fraternal lives as well.



IS THIS AN HONEST PORTR AYAL OF OUR FR ATERNITY AND SORORITY COMMUNITIES? Most fraternities and sororities were founded upon the exemplary principles of scholarship and achievement, service, philanthropy and leadership; yet today, the popular perception of Greeks is anything but. BRIAN C. JOHNSON’s keynote Reel Greek: Where Hollywood Boulevard Meets Greek Row uses film clips from popular films like Old School, Animal House, Stomp the Yard and College (and many others) to explore the influence of Hollywood on how we view ourselves as members of fraternity and sorority communities.

Brian presents other interactive keynotes that use film to frame critical discussions of diversity, multiculturalism, social justice and popular perceptions of college life, including Reel Diversity, Reel Diversity: Move Over Chuck and Larry and We’ve Scene It All Before.

Brian also discusses the impact these images have on how and who we recruit, the traditions and rituals we uphold, how we act in public and private and how we interact on with others on campus. By examining these images, audiences (Greek and non-Greek) will be challenged to question what it really means to live in a community with others, and to think critically about counteracting the negative public perceptions and promoting the true ideals of our organizations.

For more information about Brian and his keynote, please contact us at (303) 745-5545, e-mail info@campuspeak.com, or visit campuspeak.com/johnson.

Take the leap to go beyond bystander behavior and unlock solutions to problems on your campus

PersonalPower A RESPONSE ABILITY® Workshop The RESPONSE ABILITY® Project has been empowering college students to go beyond bystander behavior and to intervene in problem situations. While the project fosters personal development, it also teaches students to empower others to do the same.

CAMPUSPEAK offers this 5-hour workshop to explore personal and organizational values, what bystander behavior is, what barriers keep us from intervening, intervention styles and skills and concludes with an action plan and commitment to lead with integrity. This workshop is targeted to impact behaviors like hazing, drug/alcohol abuse, sexual abuse/assault, bullying and discrimination on college campuses. By taking part in PersonalPower: A RESPONSE ABILITY® Workshop, students will: • Identify personal and organizational values and recognize actions congruent or incongruent with them • Understand the barriers that keep bystanders from intervening when problematic behavior arises • Demonstrate proactive strategies for intervention through interactive role playing • Commit to being a person of action: living out values and confronting unhealthy behaviors • Develop supportive relationships with fellow participants

Mike Dilbeck, creator and producer of the RESPONSE ABILITY® Project, joined the CAMPUSPEAK roster in June 2009. He shares very powerful practices for when students see unhealthy or negative behavior among their peers. These messages have already dramatically changed campuses all over the country. This led to the creation of the interactive workshop, PersonalPower: A RESPONSE ABILITY® Workshop. To learn more about the RESPONSE ABILITY® Project, visit raproject.org.

For more information about this workshop, please contact us at (303) 745-5545, e-mail workshops@campuspeak.com, or visit campuspeak.com/taketheleap.






North-American Interfraternity Conference • andy@nicindy.org •  @hust0058 We’ve been Facebook friends with Andy Huston for some time now. So, when we decided to devote an entire issue of Connections to social media, he was one of the first people we thought of. As we expected, Andy delivered a clear and interesting article that tells you why a social media plan is needed and how to do it well. Yes, we realize you’ve all been using Facebook and Twitter for a while now, but this article will help you think logically and strategically about using social media to promote your organization the right way.


Bradley University • jckoch@bradley.edu •  @JesseKoch Jesse Koch is a known expert when it comes to sorting through the convoluting universe of Twitter and making it work as a marketing tool rather than just an ongoing stream of social updates. Jesse has written an article that is a worthwhile read for those who are tweeting aficionados as well the tweeting tyros. Move beyond tweeting just to update your own chapter members about social events; this article lets you know how to build your follower base and then generate tweetworthy buzz in 140 characters or less.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute • eperlow@wpi.edu •  @WPI_SAO The issues and questions social media bring to our chapters has moved far beyond our brothers and sisters posting incriminating photos of chapter events. The real issue now is wrapping our brains around how chapters and councils can capitalize on the “30-second sound byte culture” that Twitter, Facebook, and other social networking sites have created. Emily Perlow has created a story that addresses how fraternity and sorority leaders can decide what type of technology use works the best for their chapter.

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The social aspects of our organizations are one of the reasons members are attracted to fraternities and sororities. We like the interaction, the connections, and the relationships that our organizations provide and help to facilitate. Today’s students have grown up using computers to communicate; not just with email but also with instant messaging, chat rooms, text messaging, and social networking sites. No matter how big a part of daily life these communication tools are, the question is: do college students understand how to best utilize social media for fraternal organizations? Andy Huston + North-American Interfraternity Conference + @hust0058

006 // connections // 2011 • winter

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The way an organization’s social media strategy grows should be different than its social media presence. Social media can be a powerful tool to help your organization accomplish its goals. That will only happen with planning and strategy. Your personal values may be aligned with those of your organization, but you likely will have different goals.




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Our organizations can gain the attention of a broader audience than our personal accounts will. This not only reflects upon your chapter, but also your members, your alumni, your school, and your inter/national organization. Along the way there are layers of policies and practices associated with your organization of which you need to be aware. With that being said, here are some helpful tips when growing or assessing your social media strategy for your organization.


Creating a Social Media Plan This is an obvious but often overlooked first step in the excitement of setting up a new Facebook Page or a Twitter account. A social media plan should provide a broad framework for your online presence. Being intentionally broad in your plan will help the organization apply the answers to these fundamental questions to current and future social networking sites.

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The main thing [organization] members need to remember about blogs and social networking sites is that the same basic policies apply in these spaces as in other areas of their lives. The purpose of these guidelines is to help [members] understand how [organization] policies apply to these newer technologies for communication, so you can particihat ekC pate with confidence on social media platforms. (Mayo Clinic: http://sharing.mayoclinic.org/guidelines/for-mayo-clinic-employees/).

Once you have a plan in writing, it is important to learn about available tools and how they can 80 help your organization achieve its goals. The way you set this up across the 70 various social media platforms should be intentional if you 60 HAVING A SOCIAL MEDIA want to produce the most STR ATE success. After all, you GY T I N S do not utilize the U NO 50 CCO RA T same practices for E OR ITT PU text messages, TT TW ING A emails, and faxes. G YO 40 IN While they are UR similar in nature, they also have distinct 30 differences. 100





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Facebook Led by our generation, Facebook has amassed 500 billion users. This has quickly become the number one place for our time on the internet. Of the 22.4 hours per week that 18-34 year-olds spend online, 8.5 of those hours are on Facebook. Organizations have quickly embraced Facebook groups and pages. In some cases, Facebook pages have become more popular than websites of some organizations. However, with some thoughtful planning, you can easily drive traffic back to your website in order to complete a recruitment interest form or a community service update.

Twitter by retweeting, @mentioning or @replying to others. Google gives us another important justification for Twitter. Tweets are now indexed by Google. If something is not one of the 88 billion searches a month on Google, it may be part of the 18 billion searches a month on Twitter. According to SearchEngineLand, that accounts for more searches on Twitter than Bing and Yahoo, combined (2010).


To be effective, your Facebook page will need to acquire fans. Organically this can happen relatively quickly; the more important thing is to develop attractive content for your fans once they have clicked “Like.” Success of a Facebook page should be measured more by the number of likes and comments on posts than the number of followers. If you are not creating interesting or useful content, why bother having them as fans? Some fraternity and sorority headquarters have successfully worked with third party companies to build membership applications that better connect with their internal database and website. The potential is limitless, but before making huge investments of time or money, be sure you are confident in the strategy and plan to achieve desired results. Many people have restrictive privacy settings on their Facebook accounts. This can make it challenging to make connections with incoming students. Strategically connecting to other Facebook pages and groups can be helpful; this is where Facebook’s targeted advertisements can work to your benefit. There have been colonies that have started and chartered by finding initial interest group members through the use of a Facebook advertisement.


YouTube YouTube’s impact for social media is of tremendous significance. 85% of millenials watch videos monthly online (eMarketer, 2010). After Facebook, YouTube attracts the most volume of time spent online. This is why both of these sites should play a part of your social media strategy. Ultimately, your YouTube success depends on your ability to create good, brief content. A good rule is to keep videos under two minutes. The goal should not be to produce the next viral video sensation, but to think about your audience and what you would like to accomplish. YouTube is a growing source for online searches. Adding the right keywords and tags to your video will help attract the right audience. The obvious tags like your organization, fraternity, sorority, and university should not be overlooked. Creating a YouTube channel can be an easy addition to your social media plan for your organization. It is a good storage facility for videos for your organization. YouTube makes it quick and easy to share videos across multiple social media platforms; so easy that 46.2 years of YouTube videos are watched through Facebook each day. Twitter Twitter is a fast-paced, micro-blogging platform where posts are limited to 140 characters. According to the Pew Internet Report, the 18-29 year old demographic is less present on Twitter (2010), but it is important to not overlook this segment. Twitter’s growth is expected to continue to boom. Those currently utilizing Twitter may be seen as the social media influencers in your organizations. Unlike Facebook, Twitter can be treated with less privacy concerns. The majority of Facebook users connect with friends and people they have met. Twitter, on the other hand, can be thought of more as a networking tool. While searching for content or following specific hashtags (take AFLV’s #GreekChat for example), you are able to engage in conversation about a variety of topics that you are interested in. Twitter can also be linked to your Facebook Page or your personal account. Just be mindful of the differences between the two platforms. It is easy to provide many informal posts on 008 // connections // 2011 • winter

Flickr Just like YouTube can be your repository for video, Flickr is a good host site to store your digital photos. Flickr is more than just an online photo album, there are groups that you can join in order to share photographs. Flickr allows you to coordinate the pictures taken by multiple people to pool pictures together in a group album. A free account will let you upload up to 100MB per month. A nice example is Kappa Alpha Theta’s Flickr Group which can be seen at http://www.flickr.com/groups/kappa_alpha_theta_fraternity/. Flickr will let you curate and collect excellent photos, and it also allows you to share these photos with others. Sharing pictures on Facebook and Twitter makes your content more interesting and appealing. Once a visitor is viewing a Flickr photo set, it is likely that they will click through more images as well. Foursquare Over the past year location-based services have started to gain significant attention. In the beginning of 2010, Foursquare had roughly 300,000 users. Foursquare has since grown to 5 million users. Geo-social networks, such as Foursquare, let users check in to nearby venues according to their phone’s global positioning system (GPS). Geo-social networks have targeted college campuses. Foursquare, Gowalla, and SCVNGR each have done their best to be attractive by offering mobile discounts, coupons, recognition badges, and challenges. This allows for these programs to be interactive and adds a bit of a game layer to our world. Foursquare users can leave tips at venues that their friends will receive when they check in nearby. A few universities have started to add tips around campus to add a bit of history for their Foursquare users. Syracuse University

is a good example of an organization leaving tips around campus (http:// foursquare.com/syracuseu). Stanford University and Harvard University are also offering badges to their followers who check in at designated venues around campus. Blogs A critical piece of any social media strategy should involve the use of a blog. Blogs are websites that are frequently updated with posts, pictures or videos. Some many not think of a blog as social media, but they are or can be quite interactive through comments and subscriptions. A good blog can become the backbone of your organization’s social media strategy. You can share a few paragraphs of great, specific content on a blog and easily transport it to Facebook, Twitter and other sites.


The success of the blog lies in the quality of the content. Great writing will help to create a following. Interesting stories and points of view are important, however possibly the most important is your blog’s headline. Most readers will notice your headline but only a few will read the story. Blogs have other benefits beyond powering your other social media sites. Connecting your blog to your website can improve its search engine optimization. This means that sites like Google are more likely to find your website because of the keywords, tags, and freshness of your content. There are a number of blogging platforms that you can use including Wordpress. com, Blogger.com, Tumblr.com, and Posterous.com. Mobile Access According to the Pew Internet and American Life Project, 65% of mobile phone users 18-29 access the internet on their mobile phone. Are our websites easily accessible and adaptable for users trying to access them on their smart phones? Social media sites connect directly to smart phones through a variety of different applications. Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks can give us instant access to our members anytime. Selecting Your Tools There are many good resources online with tips, tricks, and ideas about how you can use social media. It might be beneficial to experiment with these different tools before implementing them within your organization. It is important to be knowledgeable and prepared on the technology you will utilize. Your knowledge from personal use will help inform decisions of whether or not a new social media site is an appropriate fit for your organizational social media strategy. This will also give you better understanding of the time commitment that any specific site will need to be properly utilized.


Blending Your Social Media for Optimal Success Most social media sites are user friendly and tend to work well with other social media websites. It is easy to combine the assets of these sites to work in your favor. An organization can prominently promote their social media presence on their homepage by including social media icons, links, or widgets. Facebook allows you to post to Twitter and share Flickr images and YouTube videos all through your organization’s Facebook page. A blog can include Flickr images or a video, and your fans may click a “Like” or “Tweet” button to share the story with their friends through their own social media accounts. These social media websites all connect and allow you to build off of one another.

you will want to search. This can help you understand questions, concerns, or other issues that are being discussed. Socialmention.com is a free tool that searches through social sites, blogs, and news media websites. Good listening will help your organization to identify allies and friends, and may possibly help identify your detractors. Engage Listening will help you to easily engage with your audience. You can comfortably and confidently respond to their questions or concerns. Some of the information that you have gathered through listening to your audience can serve as a catalyst for potential future blog posts or videos. Engaging with others online begins the conversation. As your organization engages with others, it builds credibility and trust. Your engagement should also reflect the voice and the values of your organization. Create Good Content You want to produce content that people will notice and enjoy. It is very rewarding knowing that other people enjoy the fruits of your labor. Take some time to make your content valuable to your audience. Good content drives good results. This content, and its expected result, should help fulfill your organizational goals. Measure Your Impact With social media you can easily see the size of your fan or follower base, but how do we know if our social media strategy is working? Use some of these tools to measure your overall impact. Facebook Insights: Provides trends and patterns about how your content is being viewed and interacted with. These metrics are available to Facebook Page administrators. Klout, Tweetgrader for Twitter: These are scoring and classification tools for Twitter that rates your interaction and influence. YouTube Insights: This tracks where people found your videos, how long they watched them and other useful details. These are available for channels and for individually uploaded videos. Flickr Stats: Detail about the views of your photos and where this traffic came from. Google Analytics: Tracks how visitors interact with your website. This is an easy way to measure the impact of your social media success in driving traffic to your website. Bit.ly or Goo.gl Tracking Links: Link shortening services for social media sites that track the number of clicks. Social Mention and Google Alerts: Free listening tools to manage your organization’s reputation across the web. Fraternal organizations are poised to be leaders in social media. Thoughtful application of organizational values, purpose, and goals in our online presence will only enhance what fraternal organizations do best; build and sustain lifelong relationships and values.

Listen We can apply some of the same rules from recruitment/ intake to social media. No one likes the person that shows up and just talks about themselves all night. Be socially excellent in your social networking ventures by listening and being aware of what people are saying. There may be some keywords for your organization that AFLV // 009

A world exists in which Ashton Kutcher & Britney Spears hold more power than President Barack Obama. In this world, more people care about Khloe Kardashian than the Dalai Lama.

Every second, about 1,100 people express their thoughts, feelings, actions and whereabouts, amounting to an astounding 95 million musings every day. (According to twitter.com, 2010)

I am, of course, referring to the ever-expanding and ever-changing world of Twitter (twitter.com). Started by a group of podcasters in 2006 as a means of connecting groups of friends via SMS (text) messaging, the company quickly burgeoned into one of the largest social media outlets in the world. The Twitter universe consists of over 175 million users from all over the world who seek to become better connected with their friends, their community, and the world (twitter.com, 2010). The popularity of Twitter exploded during the 2009 Iranian elections when the site became the only unfiltered resource for news. Ever since, Twitter has served as a bully pulpit for politicians, celebrities, athletes, religious leaders, and other news makers. With such a barrage of information being passed around 24/7, how can you sift through the confusion and irrelevance, establish your place in the community, and make Twitter work for you as a fraternity or sorority leader? The good news is that plenty of others have come before you. There exists today a well-networked community of fraternity and sorority Twitter users (or tweeps) ranging from undergraduate members, chapters, and councils, to your fraternity and sorority life office, your (inter)national headquarters, and a wealth of fraternity and sorority professionals. You will most certainly be supported in your efforts, and find that becoming an entrenched member of this online community will come fairly easily. Getting started is as easy as signing up for an account.

010 // connections // 2011 • winter

For whom should I create an account? Obviously, you will want to create a personal account for yourself. This will allow you to connect with friends, colleagues, interfraternal partners, and even those guilty pleasure celebrity tweeps. If your chapter or council does not have a presence on Twitter, you should consider creating an account for your organization as well. This account will allow real-time access to your organization for those who are interested in becoming members or learning more about it. Utilized as a communication, marketing, public relations, and promotional tool, a well-maintained Twitter account has the ability to add an extra element to your chapter or council functionality. Whom should I follow? The best tweeps are the ones who use Twitter to not only inform, but to create a dialogue. By following the right people and organizations, you can put yourself and your organization directly in that conversation. Accordingly, you should be careful with whom you choose to follow as it is very easy to become inundated with a stream of tweets of little or no relevance to you. Following hundreds of people and amassing hundreds of followers might work well to stroke your ego, but it will most likely shut you out of the important information and dialogue being shared. Instead, seek to identify Twitter users of relevance to yourself, your chapter, or your council.

First, start local; identify users within your fraternity and sorority community as well as users representing your college or university. Most likely, your college or university has a Twitter account, and is a great user to follow. Other offices and departments on campus may also be users, and are worthy of following; these entities include your fraternity and sorority life office, the student activities office, the academic resource and tutoring centers, the athletic department, career services and other student organizations. Depending on the tech-savvy nature of your fraternity and sorority community, there may be other chapters, councils, and undergraduate fraternity and sorority leaders using Twitter. These individuals and organizations make for great following as well.

What can I actually use Twitter for? The main purpose for Twitter is to provide relevant content to your followers and update them on your organization’s activity. Let them know what your executive board is working on, inform them about upcoming events, discuss new content available on your website, recognize the accomplishments of your members or chapters, or remind them about an upcoming Founders’ Day or anniversary - the possibilities for use are limitless. Be timely, relevant, and use moderation in your updates. Nothing will cause your followers to abandon you more quickly than an onslaught of updates with no value to them.

Putting Twitter to Work for You Jesse Koch + Bradley University + @JesseKoch Next, broaden your search to find organizations that are similar to yours. If you’ve ever been to a leadership retreat, national convention, or any other gathering of fraternity and sorority leaders, then you know that the best ideas to bring home to your chapter or council often come simply by talking to people from other schools and seeing what is working for them. Twitter will grant you the ability to do just that: identify other chapters and councils from across the country that you know are excelling. Perhaps they’ve won your organization’s top honor at convention, or they are consistently recognized during the AFLV Awards Reception - you can glean ideas and information from these organizations simply by following them. Lastly, broaden your search to the national level. There are some truly remarkable resources available to you at this level. More than likely, your (inter)national headquarters is utilizing Twitter; following them is a given. Additionally, the Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values (@AFLV), the National Panhellenic Conference (@NPCWomen), the North-American Interfraternity Conference (@NICFraternity), the National Pan-Hellenic Council (@ NPHC1930), and the National Multicultural Greek Council (@NationalMGC) are all using Twitter, and are worthy of following. In addition, our interfraternal partners provide excellent recourses for undergraduate leaders. There are plenty of fraternity and sorority professionals, bloggers, speakers, vendors, and the like on Twitter that can provide you with additional resources you may be seeking. How do I actually find these people? Twitter’s search functionality can be limited if you do not know exactly what or who you are looking for. This search is simply your first step to connecting with other users. Start with simple searches like “Alpha Alpha Alpha” or “University College” to get you started. However, to truly find the relevant users to your organizations, you will have to dig a little deeper. Once you have started following a few users, take a look at whom they are following, and who follows them. This will help you identify similar users whom you may wish to follow. As this process continues, you will identify more and more relevant users worthy of your attention. Once you have built up a fairly sizeable networking of users to follow, you will start to notice that Twitter will make suggestions of users you may be interested in following. This is a great resource because it automates the previous step for you. Twitter’s algorithms will make connections between whom you are following and who follows you to identify users that you may find noteworthy.

Use Twitter for networking, and information gathering. Now that you have amassed a collection of users whom you follow and are contributing to the discussion through your content, users will choose to follow you. After having successfully created a network of like-minded tweeps, you can start to work that network. Your Twitter homepage should be a stream of worthwhile updates from which you can collect information. In those updates you may see a really cool event that another fraternity and sorority community is hosting, a new fraternity and sorority related blog post to read, a new service being offered by your tutoring center that could be utilized by your members, or a new video on fraternal relevance that was just posted to YouTube. Being on Twitter puts you at the forefront of the fraternity and sorority movement, you can quickly surround yourself with knowledge and information to apply to your chapter, council, or community. You can also generate a buzz for your event or initiative by using Twitter to create dialogue. Do you have a premier campus event that you host every year? You can generate digital excitement for this event through the use of hashtags. Let’s pretend your council at Normal University hosts an Up ‘till Dawn event for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Anytime you tweet about the event, include the hashtag #UpTillDawnNU, and ask your followers to do the same. Twitter will recognize this hashtag, and group any posts using this same hashtag together to create a real-time conversation about the event. What you have essentially done is created an army of micro-bloggers promoting your event! You sold me, I want to make this happen. A word of caution: Twitter is a commitment. If you are not providing current, useful information, and making virtual connections, you will probably not get much out of it. If you do not make your Twitter relevant, you will end up with an account that has six followers and has not been updated since last Christmas. If your executive member responsible for public relations is not up to the task, find someone within your chapter or council who is a Twitteraholic and ask them to develop and maintain your account. Twitter is not a magic bullet to solve all of your organization’s problems. If your chapter or council is floundering and garners little to no respect from your constituents, you may very well be shining a spotlight on these issues. However, if your organization works to develop a strategy to effectively manage your Twitter presence, you may just find this tool to be of tremendous value to you. Reference Twitter.com. (September 1, 42010). In About. Retrieved November 26, 2010, from http://twitter.com/about

AFLV // 011

As a newly elected chapter president, Kevin stood up in front of the members at the weekly chapter meeting with the goal of getting the members excited about setting goals for the year. As he stood in front of the meeting, he noticed Joe had his smart phone open in the back and was sending a text message. Just as Joe closed his phone, Paulo’s phone chimed a familiar “you have a text message” chime. At the same time, Kevin noticed the chapter secretary, Rasheed, was surfing Facebook as he absent mindedly took minutes. How was Kevin going to engage these guys in working toward chapter goals when he couldn’t get them to stop being driven to distraction?


The “M” (Mobile, Multimedia, Multitasking) Generation Experiences Fraternalism Emily Perlow » Worcester Polytechnic Institute In the days where members are posting incriminating photographs online, where chapters are feeding rivalries via Twitter, and where members text each other from down the hall, it can be difficult to see the plethora of opportunities available for fraternities and sororities to beneficially use technology. As a fraternity or sorority leader, it can be hard to decide if technology is good or bad for brotherhood and sisterhood. It’s time to face the facts. The days of the face to face communication are being replaced by a “30-second sound-byte culture” reliant on technology (Perlow, 2006, p. 12). Today’s fraternity and sorority members have over 1000 “friends” on Facebook, only a fraction of which have they ever met in person, and can check e-mail by retrieving the smart phone from their pockets. The Pew Internet & American Life Project (2005, ¶ 3) maintains that we “live in a world enveloped by communications technologies; the Internet and cell phones have become a central force that fuels the rhythm of daily life.” As we rely more and more on text messaging, e-mail, and social networks, we are forced to wonder: With the rise in technology usage as a communication forum, how do we keep fraternities and sororities relevant? I Can’t Believe He Posted That on Facebook! Virtual communication has many challenges for fraternities and sororities. Think about it: how many times have you posted a status update on Facebook that you might not say in person? The inability to see and hear body language, tone of voice, inflections, and facial expressions is a major challenge. Often the sender’s intended message and tone can be misunderstood by readers. Additionally, through virtual communication, people tend to be more direct, something which can lead to hurt feelings and misunderstanding (Perlow, 2006; Perlow; in press). 012 // connections // 2011 • winter

Virtual communication is also impacting the way members relate with one another. In 1985, Americans indicated they had three people whom they considered close friends. In 2005, this number had declined to two. This change can be surprising; “we don’t usually see big social changes like this over a 10 to 20 year period” attributing this to “changes in the way that we live” (Elliot, 2005). So what does this mean for fraternity and sorority members? As one sorority member at a large mid-Atlantic college stated, “Although it may be helpful to simply send out an email to inform everyone of an upcoming event, generally it is always nicer to actually meet and discuss with someone face to face. I think the decline of face-to-face interaction is seen not only in various chapters, but in our society as a whole” (Personal communication, 2006) Rapid Fire Inclusion While there are challenges inherent in virtual communication within fraternal organizations, the rise in virtual communications is positive too. Most of the founders of fraternal organizations could not send a quick text message with the certainty that members would see the message and reply in 20 minutes or less. Messages are transmitted in today’s society at rapid fire pace, which allows for increased communication and improved information sharing. For many chapters, virtual communication is a great way to stay connected the chapter for members who are studying abroad or alumni members who live far from campus (Perlow, in press). Another valuable benefit in using online communication tools is that it allows individuals to engage in their own space and time. The technologies used every day by today’s fraternity/sorority communities allows for potential new members, through access to chapter and university fraternity/ sorority life websites, Facebook pages, and YouTube videos to learn about fraternities and sororities. What do these technologies say about your organization?

Another important benefit is tied to frequency. As a fraternity or sorority leader, you have probably often heard it said of fraternity/sorority membership that “what you put into the fraternity is what you will gain from it.” The same is true of participation in social networking. The more engaged fraternity/sorority leaders are in promoting positive images of fraternity and sorority using virtual communication, the greater the benefit (Perlow, 2006). Get Plugged In Relationships can be built and destroyed using the same virtual communication tools. How can fraternity/sorority chapter leaders strike a balance? As fraternity/sorority leaders, it is so important to acknowledge that virtual communication is the way we know how to communicate. A New York Times article demonstrates that “in 2008, people consumed three times as much information each day as they did in 1960. And they are constantly shifting their attention. Computer users at work change windows or check e-mail or other programs nearly 37 times an hour, new research shows” (Richtel, 2010, ¶16). The reality is that our brains are becoming rewired; “Scientists say juggling e-mail, phone calls and other incoming information can change how people think and behave. They say our ability to focus is being undermined by bursts of information. These play to a primitive impulse to respond to immediate opportunities and threats. The stimulation provokes excitement — a dopamine squirt — that researchers say can be addictive. In its absence, people feel bored” (2010, ¶8-9). What this means is that your members and potential members expect to engage with the fraternity or sorority quickly and efficiently using a stimulating delivery tool, or their brains (and possibly their bodies) will surf somewhere else. You have to adapt to keep your members, parents, alumni, and potential members checked in. To stay relevant, there are a number of ways you can use virtual communication beneficially: to communicate internally, to collect and archive information, and to communicate externally. The following are several technologies you or your chapter members can use to maximize communication and effectiveness. Communicate Internally Internal portals » Using internal portals, such as Blackboard, SharePoint, or other portal systems, create groups to which members can subscribe, post online, manage databases, and interact with one another. For example, if you have members that go abroad each year, videotape important events or educational programs and make them available online. RSS or SMS feeds of fraternity/sorority events » RSS feeds are formats for transmitting news to portable formats such as cell phones. Watacrackaz (watacrackaz.com/autosms) lets you easily build SMS feeds directly into your chapter website. Schedule meetings » Use When2Meet (when2meet.com), Tungle (tungle. me) or Doodle (doodle.com) to collect feedback from meeting attendees about when they are available to meet. These resources make meeting scheduling very easy. Create a work schedule, budget, or sign-up sheet » Using Edit Grid (editgrid. com) you can post schedules, share a budget, or create sign-up sheets for events and activities. You can also use Google Docs (docs.google.com) for this as well. Hold virtual meetings » Don’t let distance keep you from meeting. You can now have virtual meetings, do screen sharing, and collaborate over a distance. Wiggio (wiggio.com) lets you communicate via group e-mail, text, and voicemail, host web meetings and chat rooms, keep a shared calendar, and poll the group in real time. Etherpad (ietherpad.com) offers the ability to share real-time resources and have conversation for others to review. Other options include Skype (skpe.com), ooVoo (oovoo.com), Scribblar (scribblar. com), or Yugma (yugma.com). Use technology like GoToMeeting (gotomeeting.com), Vyew (vyew.com) to keep in contact with chapter officers over the summer months.

Create agendas electronically » Using Tada List (tadalist.com) individuals can submit agenda items. You can also post action items for your executive board and individuals can check things off when they are completed. This is great for personal organization as well. Another great resource for online document editing is Write Board (writeboard.com). Using Write Board, you can share and edit documents with other individuals and it shows what was edited and by whom. Use text messages to reach your members » Want to make sure everyone knows what is going on? Companies like Mozes Text Messaging Service (mozes.com) or Tatango (tatango.com) can help you quickly get the word out to members. You collect their cell phone numbers and then can send them text messages about upcoming events. Text message voting at meetings » Another great way to use text messaging is real-time polling of members. If you go to Text the Mob (textthemob.com) or Poll Everywhere (polleverywhere.com), you can create real time polls and your members can text in the answers. Members can submit anonymous votes from their cell phones. They can also text questions using the message board feature through Text the Mob. Online calendar » An online calendar can be embedded on your website. This allows members, parents, alumni and students to know what is happening at any time. Your organization may use tools that are available through Google™ such as Google calendar. Create dynamic presentations » Prezi (prezi.com) is a new and improved way to design dynamic, interactive presentations that makes PowerPoint look like something from the Stone Age (Hint: Before diving in, watch the tutorial). Chat forums » Create a fraternity/sorority life chat forum for members to engage with one another without spamming a mailing list or listserv. Collect, Share, and Archive Information Create electronic copies of your publications » Place copies of all posters, flyers, and calendars in an engaging format on your website. YUDU (yudu. com) lets you publish digital page turning publications from your uploaded .pdf files. Program evaluations » Evaluating your events will allow you to get feedback and improve future chapter events. Using online survey technologies, like Survey Monkey (surveymonkey.com) or Polldaddy (polldaddy.com) you can design surveys to ask members about their preferences and opinions. Online forms » No more paper sign-up sheets! Consider using an online form builder like WuFoo (wufoo.com) to create online forms. These forms can be used to anonymously submit feedback to the chapter executive board, have alumni sign up for chapter events, or vote for officers. It can even accept payment for things like dues, t-shirt orders, and alumni dinners. Shorten weblinks » bit.ly (bit.ly) shortens long web links to quick, easy to remember links. These are great for Twitter, but also when sending links to your members and alumni. Share large files » Often we have files that are too large to send via e-mail. Consider using a file sharing website such as ADrive (adrive.com) or GoAruna (goaruna.com). Check out Zoho to manage all your needs: Zoho (zoho.com) provides over 20 different resources that will help your chapter. Using Zoho you can chat, share documents, hold virtual meetings, invoice electronically, manage a potential member list, share documents and much more. Communicate Externally Virtual documents » Publish electronic newsletters to communicate with constituents like potential new members, alumni, current members, and parents. Consider using Constant Contact (constantcontact.com) or Mail Chimp (mailchimp.com). Create videos » Animoto (animoto.com) helps you create videos from chapter photos, video clips and music. It is very easy and quick. This is a great way to show potential members and alumni what your chapter is about. Podcasts and vlogs » Podcasts and video logs (or vlogs) allow you to distribute multimedia files to others. These can be used to broadcast meetings, educational speakers, and workshops. They can also be embedded into regular e-mail communication as a hook to get students to look at the content of the e-mail. Consider investing in an HD Flip Video Camera (Retail $150-200) that AFLV // 013

has a built in USB drive. This makes video capture easy. You can post them online using YouTube (youtube.com) or Vimeo (vimeo.com). Use 2-D Barcodes on PR materials » Using a free 2-D barcode generator, you can embed information into a barcode that people can scan with their smartphones. Imagine if potential members could download the chapter event address, website, contact information, and more from your chapter flyer or brochure straight to their phones. Check out Snap My Info (snapmyinfo.com/qr) to learn more. Create an engaging website » Use multimedia clips on the front page to draw people in. Ensure everything is easy to find on the site. Have a dynamic logo. If you don’t have a logo, consider holding a contest for a member to design one. Use graphics and images to help to keep people on your site by making the site more visually appealing. Make sure to put the website address on every piece of marketing you distribute. Write a blog » Blogs, a place to write essays or reviews, allow members to give their opinions about various issues. You can build a blog right onto your website or consider linking to some of the free options, such as Blogger™ (blogger.com). Twitter » Twitter (twitter.com) is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that allows users to send “updates” (text-based posts, up to 140 characters long) to the Twitter site via short message service, instant messaging, e-mail, or an application such as Hoot Suite (hootsuite.com). Those who have subscribed to your profile receive an update on what you’re doing. If students are using Twitter on your campus, create a profile for your chapter and get students to subscribe to it. Then keep the profile updated with upcoming events and activities. Capitalize on viral marketing » foursquare (foursquare.com) is the next up and coming technology. Check in at various locations to earn rewards and discounts at area businesses. It can be used for viral marketing of campus events because it connects to Facebook and Twitter. Imagine if every potential member “checked-in” at your event and all their Facebook friends could see they were there. It could get other people to attend and provides your chapter with greater name recognition. You could even perhaps use it to take attendance at your events as well. Create virtual posters » Glogster (glogster.com) helps you create poster blogs using text, images, music, and video that can be shared electronically. This is a creative way to promote events. (The preceding list is an ever evolving list of technologies that is regularly updated and has been published in some format in Perlow, 2006, Perlow & Peppes, 2008, Perlow, in press). The above list will evolve regularly. The key to staying in tune with new technologies and member needs is to constantly explore the world around you and think about application. Consider these questions: » What technologies would work for your chapter? » How would you use them? » What are some of the impediments you think you will have in implementing these technologies? » How will you overcome these impediments? » What can you do to stay current on the latest technologies? Source: Adapted from “Advising the “M” (Mobile, Multimedia, Multitasking) Generation: Fostering Fraternalism in a Technical World,” by E. Perlow, in press, Advising Fraternities and Sororities Manual, Indianapolis, IN: Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors.

Six Steps to Tech-Savvy Sisterhood and Brotherhood Now that you hopefully have a few technologies you want to try with your chapter, make sure to take these six implementation steps (Perlow, in press). Remember the adage about not banging a square peg into a round hole? Identify your goals before selecting technologies. Sometimes we choose technologies we like and try to make it match our goals. Please remember that if the technology does not meet your needs, it won’t be used well. Know what your audience is willing to try. What will they be comfortable using? For example, parents of new members may be less familiar with cutting edge technologies, but would be more comfortable with e-mail based formats. 014 // connections // 2011 • winter

Select technologies that meet your goals. Knowing that there are many options out there that perform similar functions, what will best meet your needs? Determine what success looks like—for example, more visits to your website, more members chiming in on an issue, more alumni support. Once you unveil the technology, what progress did you make on your identified goals? Make sure to ask your audience for their feedback and be receptive to what they like and don’t like about the technology. Change technology over time. People become numb to technologies as they are used. For example, how many e-mails do you get on a daily basis? Too many, right? E-mail used to be the most effective way to get the word out, and it has been replaced by text messaging and video messaging. According to a Pew Internet Center study, 14% of online teens, 13-17, say they blog, down from 28% of teen Internet users in 2006 (Lenhart, Purcell, Smith, & Zickuhr, 2010, p. 2). The rise in social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare may play a role in this change. Interestingly, 73% of wired teens now use social networking websites compared to 55% in 2006 and only 10% of teens 14-17 are using Twitter, while 33% of adults 18-29 years old are using Twitter. Make sure to adapt as your chapter’s needs change. Becoming a Supercommunicator A month after that dismal chapter meeting, Kevin banged his gavel to start the chapter meeting. He directed everyone to the Tada List on the screen. The officers had submitted agenda items electronically and they were now posted for everyone to see. The social chair, Raj, got up to review the committee discussion that had occurred via a scheduled Twitter chat about where the chapter wanted to host their next social event. Next Kevin asked everyone to text their preference using Text the Mob. In real time, the results appeared on the screen behind him. Then he asked the recruitment committee to preview the video they created to show at recruitment events and post on the chapter website. As he surveyed the crowd, Kevin was amazed—they were engaged, interested, and attentive. The use of technology really was helping members connect to the chapter and relate with one another. JP Rangaswami, of British Communications, captures it best when he states, “Generation M, born after 1982 – mobile, multimedia, multitasking – are already showing their distinctive differences. One of these differences is the advent of the supercommunicator” (Anderson & Rainie, 2010). Virtual communication is the way your members best know how to interact. The opportunity is yours. So tweet, poke, check-in, and status update about chapter activities to keep your M-Generation supercommunicator members and potential members attentive, engaged, and participating. References Elliot, D. (June 24, 2005). Social isolation: Americans have fewer close confidantes. All things considered. Washington, DC: National Public Radio. Retrieved July 21, 2006, from http:// www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5509381 Pew Internet & American Life Project (2005, July 25). Teens forge forward with the internet and other new technologies. Washington, DC: Author. Anderson, J., & Rainie, J. (2010, July 2). The future of social relations. Washington, DC: Pew Internet & American Life Project. Lenhart, A., Purcell, K, Smith, A., & Zickuhr, K. (2010, February 3). Social media and young adults. Washington, DC: Pew Internet & American Life Project. Perlow, E. (2006, Fall). Virtual interfraternalism. Perspectives. pp. 12-14. Carmel, IN: Association of Fraternity Advisors. Perlow, E. (In press). Advising the “M” (Mobile, Multimedia, Multitasking) Generation: Fostering Fraternalism in a Technical World. In Advising Fraternities and Sororities Manual. Indianapolis, IN: Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors. Perlow, E., & Peppes, C. (2008, March). Ready to get tech savvy: Take your programming board to the next level. pp. 14-18. Programming Magazine. Columbia, SC: National Association for Campus Activities. Ritchtel, M (2010, June 6). Hooked on gadgets, and paying a mental price. The New York Times. Retrieved on July 3, 2010, from http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/07/ technology/07brain.html?_r=1&src=linkedin

FROM THE ROAD Teaching Fraternal Values through Technology The Ohio State University On the campus at Ohio State there is an academic course that has been utilizing the use of blogs in connection to the coursework over the past year. The class is EDU 270, otherwise known as Leadership Theory. This past year the Sorority and Fraternity Life Office decided to host a section of the course. Typically one requirement from the School of Education is the utilization of a journal. Tyler Blair, Coordinator of Greek Life, felt that this component of the curriculum could easily be updated for a more technological savvy student and decided that this component of the class could be done through the use of a student blog. Therefore the class was given a virtual boost. This past year the course was launched with the elected officers from the governing councils. These students utilized an online blog to discuss the curriculum and have conversations about the fraternal movement. The course utilized the Social Change Model to drive the curriculum; the goal of the class was to help the students to have a better understanding of this leadership development model and how it relates to their own fraternal experience. Blair hopes this class will help students see not only how they can influence their campus but also the local community. Blair believed the class went extremely well and he enjoyed watching the students grow through their blog posts throughout the quarter. In the beginning of the class students were hesitant to post things on their blogs but over time learned it could be fun and was a way for them to have a voice about the fraternal movement. Through this course Ohio State is taking the conversation about the fraternal movement to the students by directly engaging them to be a part of the conversation. This year alone, Ohio State will be offering four sections of this course specifically geared to fraternity and sorority members. They will have a section for council officers, one for general members, one for chapter presidents and they will be piloting a section which will be entirely composed of members from the same chapter. Blair is excited that this course is being well received and would encourage anyone interested in starting something similar to not hesitate and begin the process. To see Tyler Blair’s blog visit it online at: http://btblair.blogspot.com/.

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Combating Excuses for Hazing, 140 Characters at a Time. Sigma Nu Fraternity In their effort to help combat common hazing excuses, the Sigma Nu Fraternity spearheaded a campaign on a common social media website, Twitter. The project was largely considered to be an experiment in crowd-sourcing by Nathaniel Clarkson, Director of Communications at Sigma Nu Headquarters. Utilizing the hash tag of #40Answers, Sigma Nu proposed 40 commonly heard excuses for why hazing occurs within fraternities and sororities. The organization then invited others to respond to these statements to help pick apart and provide answers or responses for these excuses. For forty days, a new excuse was posted and people posted their responses. The #40Answers program was coordinated to overlap with the annual National Hazing Prevention Week to help continue the conversation about hazing in fraternities and sororities. What occurred over these forty days was more than just witty responses. This created a list of comments and statements that anyone can utilize to help start a conversation about a very important topic that is plaguing the Fraternity and Sorority movement. For example, on Day 32 the following was tweeted: “Hazing builds better men/women by instilling toughness.” A sample of one of the many responses was provided by Kappa Alpha Order (@KappaAlphaOrder): “Tough? You want tough? Try holding brothers/friends accountable for their actions and standing up for what’s right!” This comment could be a powerful comment in a conversation with a student. This and many other simple comments could easily help to create an opportunity for honest dialogue on the topic of hazing. These arguments span a wide range of reasons why hazing should not exist within fraternities and sororities; everything from legal argument to a conversation about values. This allows students to hear this conversation from a different point of view. The responses also allow for an opportunity for the students to evaluate their own perspectives and thoughts on this topic. To view a compiled list of all 40 excuses and the responses, visit Sigma Nu’s website at http://www.sigmanu.org/documents/forty_answers.pdf. This list can give students, alumni, volunteers, or anyone else who works with fraternities and sororities a jumping off point to immediately address a student and to hopefully have an honest conversation on hazing.


From the Road is a chance to highlight best practices from Fraternity and Sorority communities across the nation. What has your campus done lately that deserves recognition? If you would like to be featured in an upcoming issue, go online to www.aflv.org/services/connections and submit an overview of a great activity that your council or community has done lately.

University Restricts Social Media Harrisburg University Imagine for a second that your university has made the decision to block access to all social media websites on your campus for an entire week. What would your day look like if you were unable to log into Facebook or you could not use Twitter to tell everyone about the event on the quad? Social media websites have infiltrated the campus culture in many different ways and there are debates from both sides as to the benefits or hindrances they are having on students. One concern often mentioned is whether students are loosing their ability to effectively communicate and interact with others due to the proliferation of social media websites. How does this affect their job search process when companies are looking for candidates that can communicate effectively both written and in person? Are students missing the interpersonal communication skills because of the success of these websites or are they simply utilizing these sites as another means of communicating? Recently one university decided to institute a blackout on all social media for their entire university. While this blackout only lasted one week, there was still a good amount of hesitation the students and faculty had with this idea. This experiment in communication was developed by Eric Darr who serves as the Provost at Harisburg University of Science and Technology. In the September 9, 2010 edition of Inside Higher Education, Darr is quoted as saying: “It’s not that, as an institution, we hate Facebook, Rather, it is about pausing to evaluate the extent to which social media are woven into the professional and personal lives of the people on the Harrisburg campus, and contemplating what has been gained and what has been sacrificed. That colleagues with offices 300 yards apart communicate predominantly via the Web is interesting, and merely talking about it does not dig deeply enough. “I wanted to make it real for people -- not to make it an intellectual exercise,” This article is interesting for fraternities and sororities because members of our organizations are communicating internally more and more through these websites to their own members and externally to other stakeholders (parents, alumni, volunteers, university officials, etc). This leads us to wonder would you be able to walk away from your Facebook account for a week, a semester, a year? To read the whole article visit the story at http://www.insidehighered.com/ news/2010/09/09/harrisburg

facilItation 411

Social Media Learning Objective

Students and professionals will increase learning and understanding competencies of Social Media concepts to enhance and maintain real-life engagement.


(reference: http://socialmedia.wikispaces.com/A-Z+of+social+media)

Social media is a term for the tools and platforms people use to publish, converse and share content online. The tools include blogs, wikis, podcasts, and sites to share photos and bookmarks. Collaboration is one of the higher goals of social networking - being able to discuss and work with people across boundaries of organization, time and space. The tools to achieve this extend from email with attachments through web-based workspaces with messaging, file storage, calendars and other tools. With the right equipment and connections you can talk to and see each other, text, sketch and transfer files almost instantly. You can set up a workspace in a virtual world, and collaborate with others. However, the conditions for successful collaboration are more human and cultural than technical, with the bottom line being trust. Sharing, commenting, chatting, co-authoring allow low-risk explorations of who you would feel comfortable working with. Readiness is a check on whether you or your organization is prepared to engage with social media. An obvious issue is whether you feel technically confident, but a further issue then is whether as an individual you are ready to “find your voice” online, or whether as an organization you will be comfortable with an open and non-hierarchical environment. Everyone will have different preferences on how to engage online, so it may be best to explore and try small steps.

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College students are already accomplished users of social media. But how does it relate to and improve their collegiate experience? And how can professionals maintain relevancy in a social media-based world where many of them are playing catch-up with student social media masters? Fraternity and sorority members and professionals have been networking successfully for a long time. Social Media allows for these groups to maintain a level of engagement while re-learning basic conversation skills in a new platform that is relevant today. The Social Media evolution provides more, better opportunities to allow for real, meaningful conversation skills because of the nature of online conversation and sharing opportunities and the ability to connect with a mass audience on a personal level.. The goal of each of these activities is education, awareness and understanding. Students will learn through discussion, activities and take-aways about varied experiences and people. Students should become more aware of their actions and the effect on others as well as others effect on them. And students should gain a larger understanding of the tools necessary to build a more inclusive community during their collegiate years and beyond.

Facilitator Considerations

HOT TIP! Professionals should partner with a student leader to co-lead Social Media facilitation. The professional will be able to mentor the student leader in presentation skills and activity implementation. The student leader can mentor the professional on effective use and understanding of Social Media. Professional: Discuss knowledge curve in advance. Remember, comments like, “I don’t understand this [facebook, twitter, social media] thing” do not make you endearing; they render you irrelevant. Discuss learning opportunities in advance with student leader and overcome obstacles for learning, usage and understanding. Student Leader: Push participants to use Social Media with a purpose. Student participants are already using Social Media regularly, but are they incorporating chapter information into Social Media usage? Are students and professionals using Social Media to enhance current programs and alumni connections? Encourage students and professionals to think strategically about Social Media to improve current offerings.

How To Get Started Social Media training can be a fun, educational program that is very active and exciting. SET-UP Activity Set-up: Select locations that are Social Media-friendly and allow for activity participants to have content to share with others via Social Media on smart phones. GROUP SIZE Activity Review: Full Group Activity: Individuals or small groups of 3+ people SUPPLIES Activity Review: none Activities: smart phone (at least one per group) ACTIVITY TIMING Activity Review: Topics should last for 5-10 minutes each. Activity: Plan an hour or two for this on-location activity.

What To Do: Activity Review

Social Media Fun: Gather a group together and create a social searching game to help with real-world application of social media usage. Divide participants into small groups and ensure at least one smart phone per group. Have each smart phone participant download and set-up the Social Media app that will be used for the activity (suggested apps are: Twitter, Facebook, FourSquare, Brightkite or Loopt) Give groups a list of locations to visit and have the groups mention their location, what’s happening and their Greek involvement in their Social Media posts. Groups try to find each other by using Social Media apps to discover content and determine location. Activity Variations One group member can stay at the “home base” location for people to find them; other group members (that also have smart phones and apps) can travel to another location near the “home base” when other groups visit the “home base” they can then try to travel to the next location to find the members that have moved locations. Groups can travel only to businesses owned by Greek Alumni or University supporters. With the positive PR generated from Social Media usage, groups may be able to snag freebies, discounts or make good connections with business owners.


After you’ve hosted or lead any event, assessment is essential for improvement. Consider distributing surveys to participants or sponsor a feedback meeting to gather successes, opportunities and goals for the next program.

Improve Social Media Usage: What Students/Professionals Can Do

Discover Free: Each week, sites like iTunes offer new apps for free. Set up one day per week to check free apps and download ones that will assist or enhance your life or just help you have more fun. Follow Top Twitter users: Following Top Twitter users allows you to garner information, current trends and hot tips that may be brand new to you. Suggested Twitter-following opportunities: MarkRanganCEO, unbrelievable and AFLV. More isn’t always better. Take Social Media usage and learning in small steps. If you start a facebook, twitter, blog and other Social Media outlets; you may overload yourself and annoy your “customers”. Consider what areas of social media that you’re comfortable with and stretch yourself a little. By effectively using a few key areas, you’ll increase your positive reach and you’ll be able to accomplish your goals.

Groups can ask questions about current location and talk with individuals that are also in the current location to input experiences into Social Media outlets. PLAN FOR SUCCESS People get more out of experiences that they enjoy. When leading or participating in Social Media training, make sure it is an activity that helps students and professionals change their usage, learning and understanding in a safe, beneficial way. Allow students and professionals to have the opportunity to do what they want with the information, it may take days or months or years for them to grasp the concept and see the benefits. AFLV // 019

Here’s My Question: Three years ago my sorority implemented a rule that we have to make our Facebook pages private during Recruitment periods. More recently, my chapter is saying that we need to make our pages private all of the time… some of the members in our chapter don’t care much about this but many of us are really upset about it. The leadership says that this will help protect our image. What can we do to convince them this is a stupid idea?

Liz Osborne 3:55 PM 01/06/2011

Samantha Armstrong 3:55 PM 01/06/2011

At some point during your initiation, I am confident that you promised to uphold the ideals of your national organization, which means that agreed to be a part of something bigger than yourself. Occasionally, this means that you are called to act responsibly when the average person is not. Being a member of a sorority should make you above the average. Own that! If you are opposed to this rule because you live out your values everyday and post absolutely nothing on Facebook that could be misconstrued as inappropriate, then I applaud you. Perhaps you can work with your chapter to create minimum standards for allowing chapter members’ profiles to remain public. However, never forget that you agreed to live by the collective values of the organization and if having a private Facebook profile is part of that, then so be it. I’ll take this one step further. Challenge the rest of your chapter to live out your values by not acting inappropriately and rules like the one you’re upset about will cease to be a topic of conversation.

Before rallying the troops and protesting the leadership decision, my thought is that your chapter needs to take a step back and have some conversations. The reality is this: your leadership is trying to look out for your organization and they need your help. What you might come to realize, through the power of conversation and education, is that the stance your sisters are taking may actually be in your best interest as well as your organization’s best interest. However, in order to make a decision that people understand and can get behind, it is important for them to know the reasoning behind the decisions being made and look at all the angles before diving in and making quick decisions. While it is fun to post photos on your Facebook page, tell jokes, or give constant status updates, they can come back to haunt you in ways you cannot even imagine now. Plus, with “Friends” being able to “tag” you in notes and photos that you have little control over, you are at risk for not only being misrepresented in the eyes of people you do not know, you are at risk for being misrepresented in the eyes of people you want to think the best of you. Rather than view your sorority as cramping your style, I challenge you to look at the bigger picture here…. your personal reputation and how it impacts your organization.

Ask the Experts One Last Question:

Even though social networking sites are kind of old news at this point, our community still struggles a lot trying to use them for promoting events and positive things we do… what ideas can we easily implement?

020 // connections // 2011 • winter

Social media is an inexpensive and effective method for communicating with the Council’s constituents (potential new members, parents, the University Administration, Alumni, etc.). Let’s use Twitter as an example. From personal observation, I believe Twitter to be the “it” form of social media currently. Step one in your social media marketing plan is easy—create a twitter account. The next piece of the puzzle isn’t as simple. Liz Osborne Someone needs to maintain the Twitter account. This person should be willing to dedicate time and energy to creating a following and then tweeting relevant information. After selecting the responsible officer, they need to create a following. Try offering incentives. For example, have a contest between the chapters in the Council. The chapter to have the most people following the Council account could win a $50 grant for their PR fund or a certificate for having the most Council spirit. The wheel doesn’t have to be recreated either. Debut the Twitter account during Greek Week and incorporate it into the points system. The next step is to use Twitter to communicate Council event details, community successes and deadline reminders. To continue to ensure that the audience is being reached, the responsible officer might tweet one fact a week. The person in the Council’s regular meeting that can repeat the fact could win a prize. If funding is an issue, using the Twitter account to communicate vital information could create a following. Also, use the other members of the executive team to re-tweet the messages. If the Council leadership doesn’t buy into the marketing plan, then others won’t either. If Twitter isn’t “it,” use Facebook in the same way. Just remember that social media is inexpensive and effective, but it isn’t an easy fix and does require regular maintenance.

OK, Here’s Another Question: Last month our fraternity got busted for a party at our house because someone posted photos of it on Facebook. So, while we’ve learned our lesson about the party (if we wouldn’t have had it we wouldn’t have gotten busted) this experience has brought up a bigger discussion about what people are posting on Facebook that makes our chapter look bad – or good for that matter. What types of policies do chapters and councils have about this? Can we prohibit people in our chapter from posting pictures that are distasteful? A position statement addressing the Council’s collective viewpoint on social media outlets is one option to pursue. Additionally, incorporating certain stipulations into recruitment policies is an alternative to consider. A combination of both is also possible at the Council level. However, individual chapters should consult with their local and national advisors to create a policy that is within organization policy.

Liz Osborne

Samantha Armstrong

1:02 PM + 01/02/2011

I like where you are. You are thinking critically about what you put out there and how you can help people make good choices when it comes to personal and organizational representation. I would encourage you to start by having your leadership have a conversation about the merits of such policies and, how they can actively engage the whole chapter in conversations around this topic. Creating new policies, rules, or regulations without educating everyone on why the policy is there and providing concrete examples of why such a policy is needed could be a disaster. I am not saying that policies are not needed or appropriate in fraternities and sororities, but I am saying that before you go the policy route, you should explore other ways to solve your social network dilemmas and educate your chapter. In the end however, there are many organizations that have gone the policy route and some have been very successful. They range in outlining what people can post to making sure everyone has their privacy settings set on high. I would encourage you to ask around, call other chapters or even other campuses to see what they have and what is working. You may even want to check with your national organization to see if they have worked with chapters to design policies or if they have one already that you should be following. You are a private organization and individuals have selected to join you. As such, you can require people to follow the policies you have put in place with the blessing of your national organization. That said, while there are organizations that have policies regarding Facebook and even some organizations that have an officer in charge of monitoring member’s Facebook pages, I think you need to look at other ways to work with your chapter regarding their individual use of social networking sites before you institute a policy. 1:45 PM + 01/02/2011

First, I applaud you for looking at ways you can use your social networking capabilities for good versus evil! I believe that the key to any good social networking strategy is to identify your audience(s) and then provide something that people need, want, or find intriguing. For example, you could be the organization that posts on all of the philanthropic events taking place in the Greek Community and how chapters can get involved or, you could give Samantha regular tips on leadership or academic success. If your target audience is new members Armstrong or potential new members, you could put up a daily tip for new students on how to get involved or succeed in school. The trick is to regularly put something up that will draw people to your page. Incorporating pictures and video clips can also help. If you want people to follow you and return to the site, have occasional giveaways ($5 coffee cards) for the 5th person every month that posts something positive on your wall or a large prize for the 700th and 1000th follower etc. Get creative and people will start following. I would also focus on doing two things really well to begin with versus using all social networking mediums at once. Maybe you pick Facebook and Twitter to start and then branch out to having a blog or YouTube Channel. Whatever you choose, brainstorm as a group on how you are going to make it a success. In addition to the above, you should work to incorporate the maintenance of the site into an officer’s job description so that there is someone in charge of posting pictures, announcements, inviting people to events etc. It is easiest if you provide the person in charge with a concrete job description for maintenance (post a daily tip, add event pictures every Thursday, check messages Monday, Wednesday, & Friday, etc.). You do not want to “over-do” it with the posting so making sure that it is regular, but not overwhelming, is key. Last, but not least, have fun with it!

Want to be a Connections Magazine Expert?

If you are a professional who has great advice, email publications@aflv.org and let us know that you are interested in being one of our future Experts.

Liz Osborne Oklahoma State University elizabeth.osborne@okstate.edu Samantha Armstrong Washington State University sjarmstrong@wsu.edu


Your Comments on Our Questions How can Greeks use Social Media to their advantage? Kelsey Lee > Millikin University > Alpha Chi Omega


Greeks can use social media tools not only for recruitment but also to show all the community service and projects we are constantly doing. CJ Schneider > Wright State University > Delta Zeta


We use Facebook groups for recruitment so we can focus on incoming freshman before school starts. We also use it to advertise COB events. Shannons Kelly > Missouri School of Science and Technology > Kappa Delta


With the increasing interest of social media it has become easier to contact large groups of people at the same time. I believe that Greeks can use things such as Facebook to make the public more aware of events going on within the community that Greeks are doing. Carly Schilhaus > Alpha Phi


As part of the Panhellenic Council, we decided that Twitter could be a great way to connect to the Greek community (both Greek and non Greek) and we have just created ours in order to spread the word about Greek wide or school wide events that sorority members can get involved with. Erica Serbus > Sigma Sigma Sigma


Facebook can be very beneficial for sorority or fraternity members. It’s a great networking tool for upcoming events and great for recruitment. Also if members are willing to keep their profiles clean it can be a great tool for positive PR.

What is the best new technology for Greeks? Why? How is it best used? Brittany Darby > Eureka College


Facebook is what we employ the most often. We use it to inform our campus of our various events. (I.e. philanthropy projects, fundraisers, etc.). Tyla Warner > Franklin College > Zeta Tau Alpha


Well, since I am the treasurer, I think www.billhighway.com is the best technology for our chapters. It is an easy way to control our finances.

022 // connections // 2011 • winter

Tips to Avoid Cyber Stalking Within the past few months, the news has been buzzing with unfortunate cyber stalking incidents targeting college students. As a result, universities across the nation have taken an active approach to educating their students about the importance of being proactive by taking safety measures to avoid being harassed online. Here are some tips on how to protect your privacy so that you don’t become the next victim of cyber stalking: Get creative with your screen name. If you frequent lots of different message boards, chat rooms, and social networking sites, choose different screen names for each venue. Make sure you also change your passwords frequently. Make computer scans a habit in your computer use. Make sure your computer is regularly scanned by anti-virus software for Trojans, worms, and email viruses. Cyber stalkers can send these to you without you knowing. Limit whom you chat with. When you engage in conversations online, try to limit your conversations to those people you know and trust. Cyber stalkers have also sent instant messenger worms to their victims. It’s okay to deny friend requests. As you get requests for friendships in social networking sites, make sure you’re limiting your acceptance to only those who you know and trust. This goes for any type of requests anyone asks for from you online AND for any links anyone sends you… Restrict the information you post about yourself. Avoid posting your personal information like your birthday, email and home addresses, phone numbers, and where you live online Watch those applications! While they are extremely fun, beware of the applications you add to your social networking accounts. Those can also do some damage to your computer and its software, while also compromising your safety! Source: FightCyberstalking.Org

Treat your email address like you would your phone number. Would you give your phone number to a stranger? Probably not. With email being such a prominent way of communication nowadays, it’s important to start treating it like it’s your phone number. Alert the owner of message boards. If you are being harassed by someone on a message board, make sure you alert its owner and save all harassing messages. Google your full name. Doing this will help you see what others see about you online and you may be surprised at how much of your personal information other people can find. Photos of you online. Beware of posting photos that have easily identifiable landmarks. Cyber stalkers use photos a lot to identify places individuals they are stalking frequent.     Should you become a victim of cyber stalking, make sure you do the following:   Save the evidence and take it to your local police department. Report it. It’s important that you reach out to the proper reporting authorities and let them know what’s happening. You need to make sure you are taking the proper and appropriate measures to protect yourself. Tell someone you are close to. Make sure people are aware you are being cyber stalked so they can take necessary precautions online to protect you online as well! Seek counseling. It’s not unusual to feel different emotions when you are cyber stalked; you need to make sure you don’t handle all of these feelings alone.

We’ve all heard the old adage “actions speak louder than words.” While I will admit that this statement rings true most of the time, there are moments where words written on a page can offer more of a smack in the face than an actual smack can. The written word has a sort of power; a kind of glamour to it. And what could be more powerful than words that reach the whole world, with only a click? I love to write. It’s something that I’ve enjoyed doing since I first learned how, and I especially enjoy writing about things that I’m passionate about. Few things have made me more passionate in the 21 years I’ve been on this earth than fraternity and sorority life. Being a student leader at the Capital University, I’ve faced more issues dealing with diversity, human dignity, hazing, and the like than my mother has dealt with in her whole life, or so she claims. I get particularly fired up about certain issues in the fraternal world, and it leads me to my outlet-- writing.

Taking Action:

A Blogger’s Call to Action By Heather R. Harper, Capital University

I’ve kept an online blog that I post on here and there as inspiration strikes or a certain topic comes to mind that I care to write about. One such topic this year dealt with hazing in fraternities and sororities. I wrote, not thinking anyone would read it, when all of a sudden a link to my blog popped up all over Facebook. In a matter of hours, I had messages sent to me, comments on my Facebook wall, and texts commenting on my blog post. A facilitator from my UIFI (Undergraduate Inter-Fraternity Institute) session messaged me to say how excited they were to see student leaders speaking out on such issues, and it amazed me how far my words had reached in just a couple of hours. I regularly read other blogs by leaders in the fraternity and sorority world. Being friends with many fraternity and sorority members on Facebook, I’ve had exposure to a number of blogs by students, advisors, and consultants. You name it and I’ve probably read it. I’ve read horror stories about hazing on different campuses and stories about fraternity and sorority leaders making a difference in the world that have brought me to tears. When I read a blog that I particularly like, I share it on Facebook as a link so all of my friends can read it if they so choose. It leads me to wonder if the authors of these other blogs are like me; amazed that so many people are interested to read what they have to say. There are many of our brothers and sisters out there struggling to make a difference in their communities. For whatever reason, many have a tough time backing themselves up when the moment comes. I know, I’ve been there (my heart goes out to you if you’re there now). In a society of instant gratification and the “I want to see the facts now” mindset, fraternity and sorority members who are out there fighting the good fight now have some evidence, so to speak. We can show our communities that “Hey, I’m not the only one who thinks this way. In fact, look how many people agree with me!” It’s hard to stand up and speak out sometimes, but student leaders can look to blogs and other social media to find words of comfort and that they’re not alone. In fact, it might even drive them to write their own story. People are watching (and reading), even if you don’t think they are. You have the power to speak up and act quickly with mediums like blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media at your fingertips. You’re not just a student on your campus. You’re a fraternity man or a sorority woman. You’re a student leader, no matter if you hold a position in your chapter or not. We’re held to a higher standard, and when we speak, our voices are heard by many. Use your voice for good. I’m not saying to just dodge whatever problem you have by just writing and not acting. You should always act on an injustice. If you see hazing, report it. If students are being treated unfairly, do everything in your power to make it right. But wouldn’t it be wonderful to get more students on your campus to act with you? There’s no better way than writing about it. Update your Facebook status, Tweet it, or write a blog. Get people to notice. You’ll be surprised who’s reading.

024 // connections // 2011 • winter

You have the power to speak up & act quickly. You’re not just a student on your campus. You are a fraternity man or a sorority woman. ”

2011 El Salvador Immersion Trip Jesus Chavez + Arizona State University + Lambda Theta Phi Latin Fraternity “This one trip has provided a multitude of different experiences I never could have imagined. There was no way that I could have ever guessed what was bound to happen when you coupled 20 fraternity and sorority college students with a war torn country in need of all the help it can get.” Diana Bui + University of Georgia + Delta Phi Lambda Sorority, Inc. “A couple days ago my Facebook status was, “Although I hurt and miss home, I know I am making a difference.” This is exactly how I feel. I am glad to be here, and to be able represent my sorority, school, and region as well as build this bond with Greeks from all over the nation. It’s so rewarding to know that I am able to make an impact in someone’s life and to meet and see these people smile despite the situation they are in.” Katie Burwell + Ohio State University + Chi Omega “A profound thing happens when one blindly embarks on something. You can read articles, surf the Internet, search YouTube, but nothing hits you quite like the brick wall of actually being in that situation. That is what happened to me when I got to El Salvador. The brick wall could literally be one of the 10 foot barricades that surround every building in San Salvador, but luckily we haven’t run into any of those yet (nor had to contend with the barbed wire on the top.) However, no amount of research or worldly experience could have prepared me for this.” Julie Knox + Ohio State University + Kappa Delta “The second thought that impacted me was when Professor Brackley shared with us that “You cannot change El Salvador in a week, but El Salvador can change you.” When thinking about these words, I could not agree more. From these experiences, I believe that I have grown- grown in my awareness of a country in need, grown in my appreciation for another culture, grown in my commitment to serving underprivileged areas not just miles away but in my own community back home. In the end, it is true we did not change El Salvador, but the steps we took in the Salvadorians’ “shoes” has changed us, and the lives of the families and communities that we helped and provided hope for as we were there.” Courtney Wilhelm + Illinois State University + Alpha Gamma Delta “‘We who have a voice must be a voice for the voiceless’ The quotation above is painted in the dining room of the house, and is visible to every volunteer as they eat their meals, mingle with fellow volunteers, and converse with the workers here. When I came to El Salvador a few days ago and read that quotation I interpreted it meant that El Salvadorans who had a voice should be the voice for El Salvadorans who were voiceless. I was wrong.”

Will You Be On The Next One?

Keep watching for details about our next Immersion Service Experience. Coming Next January.

Fraternity’s suspension delayed.

Busted. Stupid Things That You Have Done Lately

The goal of Busted! is to call attention to an event, situation, or practice that has actually occurred and utilize it as an experience that others can learn from.  It is commonly said that fraternities and sororities suffer from unfair stereotypes and are undervalued for our true purpose as values-based organizations. Unfortunately, some fraternity and sorority members commonly mock these stereotypes by behaving in ways that only solidify them in the minds of others. Busted! aims to confront these stupid decisions via direct confrontation. Actions such as these do nothing but reinforce the negative stereotypes of today’s fraternities and sororities. Embarrassed? Then knock it off.


Crabbe, N. (2010, Dec. 7) Fraternity’s suspension on hazing allegations delayed: The national fraternity has removed many Pi Lambda Phi members. Gainesville Sun. Retrieved from: http://www.gainesville. com/article/20101207/articles/101209593 Brown, R. (2010, Nov. 2) Crude fraternity e-mails reignite debate on gender issues. Duke Chronicle. Retrieved from: http://dukechronicle.com/article/crude-fraternity-e-mails-reignite-debategender-issues Plenda, M. (2010, Dec. 3) Dartmouth frat charged after drunk teen hospitalized. The Union Leader. Retrieved from: http:// nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_product=UL&p_ theme=ul&p_action=search&p_maxdocs=200&s_ dispstring=allfields%28frat%29%20AND%20date%28last%20 6%20months%29&p_field_date-0=YMD_date&p_ params_date-0=date:B,E&p_text_date-0=6qzM&p_field_advanced-0=&p_text_advanced0=%28frat%29&xcal_numdocs=20&p_perpage=10&p_ sort=YMD_date:D&xcal_useweights=no

A University of Florida fraternity has been given a deferred suspension for alcohol and hazing violations …. Pi Lambda Phi members must comply with the UF student conduct and honor codes through August 2012 or risk having the suspension implemented.

The national fraternity conducted a membership review that resulted in more than half of the UF chapter’s members leaving or being removed, said the director of chapter operations. He said the chapter now has a much different feel than it did before, as the organization has worked with the university on education efforts involving members. “It indicated to the school that we were serious [and] these actions were not something that we were supportive of or felt were congruent with our values,” [the director] said. The charges mainly involved hazing. A UF investigation found that during the fraternity’s “Hell Week,” pledges were required to create paddles, which other members later used to hit them. Pledges were also blindfolded and their feet put in buckets of ice water, the investigation found. They were sprayed with warm water if they gave a correct answer and cold water if they gave a wrong answer. The questioning lasted 2-3 hours, with pledges occasionally being able to take their feet out of the buckets for a few minutes. Other charges involve underage drinking and the forced consumption of alcohol and hot sauce. The investigation also found that pledges were blindfolded and forced to listen to the country song Friends in Low Places for about 2½ hours. A pledge was also told to defecate and put the waste on someone’s vehicle, according to the report. UF found the fraternity guilty of alcohol and hazing violations in October, issuing its sanctions at that time. The Sun obtained the investigation this week as part of a public records request. The associate director of the UF Office of Sorority and Fraternity Affairs, said the deferred suspension reflected the fact that the national organization first took action. “What happened after the fact was exactly what we like to see,” [the associate director] said. The UF chapter was previously reprimanded in 2007 for hosting an unauthorized party at its house on 15 Fraternity Row in which university police found alcohol, drug paraphernalia and marijuana. For those of you who are still (still!?!) having the what-is-considered hazing debate, let us provide you with a few answers. If you are considering anything on this list go ahead and put the activity in the yes-it’s-hazing column: 1 + Forcing pledges to drink something. Anything. Legal or not. Yummy or not. 2 + Blindfolding pledges when not explicitly stated in your Ritual book, and we mean the Ritual book that is copyrighted to your Fraternity, not the one that Boomer wrote when he was senior pledge educator in 1988. 3 + Hitting pledges with anything. Again, see the liberal use of the word anything. 4 + Conducting quizzes or pledge education tests that would look at home in Guantanamo Bay. We hope you find that check list a handy tool. Suffice it to say, the hazing these men engaged in was wicked inappropriate. And we’re glad they got caught. There is a lot to be learned from their plight, though, so let’s talk a bit about that. First, did you notice how the newspaper got all the details of this case? Public records request. Yep, you got it. File a request and the organizational conduct records from a public institution are right there, ready for public scrutiny. Nifty, huh? Second, have you ever had someone tell you that telling the truth now will save you time and hurt later? It can be true. See how the national organization stepped in here, took care of business and earned the respect of the University and additional privileges for the chapter by doing so? Let that be a lesson. Think if you fight the hazing in your chapter no one will back you up, no one will work with you to save your fraternity? You might be wrong.

026 // connections // 2011 • winter

Dartmouth frat charged after drunk teen hospitalized.

Another fraternity at Dartmouth College faces felony charges after a 17-yearold high school student -- and prospective Dartmouth swim team member -- had to be hospitalized after a night of drinking at Psi Upsilon, police said. The fraternity is already facing three criminal charges for providing alcohol to minors stemming from earlier incidents this year. The latest charge comes the same week the college unveiled a new plan to curb underage drinking. According to Hanover police, the 17-year-old boy, a senior from an out-of-state high school, was visiting Dartmouth as a recruit for the swim team and a prospective student. He was being sponsored by a current Dartmouth student and shown around campus, said [the] Hanover police chief. He would not say if the sponsor took the boy to the party later at Psi Upsilon on Oct. 23. [The police chief] said that after the teen drank several beers and mixed drinks in the house… he left the party. He was found lying on the steps of Thayer Dining Hall, which is near the fraternity house. [The police chief] refused to say how much alcohol the boy had consumed or how long he may have been at the party. He was taken to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center because police believed he was suffering from alcohol poisoning. He was treated and released the following day. Police launched an investigation, and on Dec. 2, served the president of the [fraternity] with two felony complaints for providing alcoholic beverages to minors. This is the fourth pending case against the [fraternity]. The organization could receive fines of up to $100,000 per count if convicted. A Dartmouth spokesperson did not return a call. In January, …., after seeing a spike in the blood-alcohol levels of underage drinkers on and off campus, [the police chief] threatened to send undercover officers into Greek parties to try to catch those serving alcohol to minors. However, police reconsidered after major protests from students and administrators -- including [the College] President -- and offered to give students a chance to rein in underage drinking on their own. However, nothing has changed so far, [the police chief] said. For those of you keeping score at home, that’s four CRIMINAL charges against the fraternity. Four. Criminal. Charges. We’re not sure why this fraternity president isn’t in jail. We’re also not sure why this fraternity is still functioning. Where exactly is the national organization? Ring, ring. Ring, ring. Hello? Psi Upsilon? This is common sense calling. My friend Fraternal Values and I want to know why on earth you haven’t done anything with your Dartmouth Chapter. Please advise. Similarly, heaven bless the private college, but really, Dartmouth? You still recognize the fraternity? For real? It’s like the national organization and the fraternity are the mom and dad who want to be a friend and not a parent. Step up. Someone. Please. And as far as the Psi Upsilon undergraduates go, we sure hope they enjoy Club Fed when they’re all arrested for their white collar crimes in 20 years. Eventually, some day, we hope they will learn that the law applies to them. Too bad fraternity, which should be a pretty good place to learn about and practice good citizenship in a safe environment, failed at teaching them that.

Crude fraternity e-mails reignite debate on gender issues.

An e-mail message landed in the inboxes of more than 300 Duke women inviting them to a fraternity’s Halloween party at an off-campus apartment. “Hey Ladies,” the message to the Sigma Nu fraternity social listserv began, “Whether your [sic] dressing up as a slutty nurse, a slutty doctor, a slutty schoolgirl, or just a total slut, we invite you to find shelter in the confines of Partners D.” According to several students interviewed for this story, on most nights that would have been the last anyone saw of the e-mail. The fraternity threw its party, students had a good time and everyone went home and fell asleep. But when the sun rose the next morning, West Campus was plastered in bright yellow flyers printed with the full text of Sigma Nu’s invitation , as well as a similar e-mail  sent by the unrecognized, off-campus fraternity Alpha Delta Phi. [The] Alpha Delta Phi President, a senior, Social Chair, a junior, and the national chapter of the fraternity declined to comment on their organization’s e-mail, which joked, “Fear is riding the C1 with Helen Keller at the helm (not because shes [sic] deaf and blind, but because she is a woman).” Many students noted that the e-mails are intended to be humorous. For many in the Greek community… the only surprise was that the messages surprised anyone at all. “Honestly, when I first received those e-mails [Saturday night] I didn’t think anything of it,” said [the] senior secretary of Delta Delta Delta sorority. “This is the kind of thing I’ve come to expect from fraternities. In my heart, I know it’s a problem but I’ve really gotten used to it.” “[The fraternities] want to send the funniest e-mails so they can have the best parties so they can get the quote unquote best girls so they can get the quote unquote best pledge class,” said [a Duke student]. “That competitiveness drives people to push the limits.” These e-mails do not come only from the fraternities implicated in [the] flyer campaign. Approximately 20 e-mails obtained by The Chronicle reveal party invitations of similar tone and content sent by several other Duke fraternities in the last year. Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity used their organization’s social listserv Jan. 16 to invite a group of Duke women to a party titled “Culture Shock.” “Thinking we should make that fence down south a little taller?” the message asked. “Pissed about a certain group of easterners f-ing up the curve in Econ 51?... Well it’s time to get over your fears and join the brothers of Pi Kappa Alpha for a truly unique tour of the world.” “Sup BabyGurlz,” opened an e-mail from the Kappa Alpha Order March 17. “Do you want to get your eagle on Saturday March 27th? Do your loins pulsate and throb at the very mention of KA?... Does the idea of a day with the Order make you throw up a little bit in your mouth? If all of the above is not enough, we propose a contest. First to the ER WINS.” Many crude fraternity party invitations fly under the radar, said a sorority member who requested anonymity because she feared losing friends in the Greek community. She added that women often shrug off these messages because the men who send them are their friends, and the jokes do not generally reflect how they interact with their female friends face-to-face. “I don’t take it too seriously,” she said. “I think that college boys will be college boys.” But separating the men from their message allows fraternities to get away with expressing distasteful sentiments without any fear of repercussions, said [the] Pi Beta Phi sorority President. To the contrary, she said she has known Greek women who were uninvited to parties or shunned by close male friends after expressing anger about the way fraternity party invitations addressed women. For [the] Panhellenic Association President, the fact that women receive these e-mails but do not often complain is a major problem. “Women get invitations that call them sluts and hos... and they still go to the parties,” she said. Every once in while we come across a fraternity system where we might suggest that shutting the whole thing down and starting over is the best course of action. Given the above, that very well may be the case here. And, actually, we’re equally disappointed in the women. Maybe shutting down the entire system is the best plan. It sure seems that these folks can’t handle what’s been given to them. Oh, we’re not talking about the fraternity presidents who apologized, or the Panhellenic president who knows this is a ginormous problem. We’re talking about the average member who – given the students interviewed here – seems to think acting like animals is a good idea. Maybe the women would prefer to live like cavewomen? Or they’d be OK giving up the rest of their dignity. Perhaps the right to vote? Or wear slacks? Maybe Duke should stop allowing female students to run for student government? By their own admission they’re objectified and oppressed and they’re not willing to say a word about it. We say if you’re going to be a bear, be a grizzly. Go big or go home. So while we want to have a long, difficult dialogue with these fraternity men for being abhorrent, it’s the women being doormats that is the most disturbing. So, here’s a hint ladies: If you stop dressing like slutty whatevers and still go to their parties, they will let you in. Because fraternities want women at their events. End of story. In fact, if you STOP going altogether, they’ll be BEGGING you to explain what it would take to get you back there. It’s that simple. Get over the idea that they want 300 slutty nurses (they might). We don’t always get what we want.

% % of young adults 18-29 20 30 % of young adults 18-29

93 37 72 44 71 47 15 79


% of young adults 18-29

Young Adults & Social Networking:

the Stats

use the internet 40 50 60 70 80 use Twitter



use social networking

% of young take steps to limit the amount of personal adults 18-29 information available about them online % of social net users 18-29

change their privacy settings to limit what is shared about them online

% of social net users 18-29

delete comments others have made on their profile

% of young adults 18-29

have created a blog

% of young adults 18-29

DO NOT use their phones to go online

Among young adults, Facebook is the number one social networking choice (73% have a Facebook profile), followed by MySpace (48%) and LinkedIn (14%). Source: Pew Research Center (http://www.pewinternet.org)

{ }

one more { thing we know you’re near the end, but we’d love to tell you

5 Ways to Use Social Networking to Market

before you go and look at the back cover of the mag.

028 // connections // 2011 • winter


Create a blog. While only 15% of young adults have created a blog, there are over 110 million blogs worldwide! Use blogs to talk about your experiences, what your organizations have to offer, and why being a member of a fraternity/sorority enhances your life.


Get a Facebook fan page. Facebook fan pages can be used to spread news, discuss different topics, and share pictures!


Establish a Twitter account. If you need to let people know quickly of a change in location, good news about one of your members, or to announce upcoming opportunities, Twitter is a great way to help you quickly and efficiently connect with others.


Produce a video. Watching videos online is quickly becoming a popular way to learn tips and how to’s. Why not use videos to showcase why joining a fraternity/sorority is relevant today?


Link other websites to yours. If your organization has a website, create a page that lists links that enhance the information you are providing the audience about your organization or joining a fraternity/sorority overall!

Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values PO Box 1576 Fort Collins, CO 80522-1576

The LeaderShape Institute challenges participants to lead with integrity while working towards a vision grounded in their deepest values. Participants explore not only what they want to do, but who they want to be. The AFLV Session of LeaderShape will bring fraternity and sorority leaders from across North America together to explore important personal and community focused skills and philosophy all under the umbrella of shared fraternal values.

Want more info? Time to apply? Scan this code & start your journey.

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AFLV Connections Winter 2011 - Social Media  

AFLV Connections Winter 2011 - Social Media

AFLV Connections Winter 2011 - Social Media  

AFLV Connections Winter 2011 - Social Media

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