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Social Media - the Good, the Bad & the Ugly


Pas de Quatre
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For some time I had been thinking of starting a thread on this topic, and the discussions on the "Potential" thread have prompted me to go ahead.  In many ways I think social media is a useful tool, I have enjoyed online classes and performances thoughout lockdown.  But everyone needs to be aware of the dangers of some content.  I am forever reminding pupils that there are photos of people in exaggerated poses that they shouldn't attempt to emulate, and also not to try to learn steps and tricks they see.  If I haven't taught it to them yet, it is because they aren't ready yet.

 

Like many people I started on Facebook some years ago.  I have a personal account, a private group for my school and a school page.  Over time I have evolved my own set of rules, with a few mistakes along the way.  My personal account really is personal.  All my friends are people I actually know.  As well as family and non dance friends, there are other teachers and dance world contacts, and also some ex pupils.  I found it counter-productive to be friends with parents of current pupils or the pupils themselves.  That is why I set up the private school group.  However, on my personal account I have also accepted friend requests from former pupils who are over 18, and it is a lovely way to keep in touch and see what they are doing.

 

It is on Instagram that I have not yet worked out the best way forward and would love to hear others' opinions.  There I have a school listing and I follow several big companies and well known dancers.  No problem there.  Again it is with pupils that I am not sure how best to handle it.  Older ones, fine.  But with younger ones or parents, I know they would be flattered if I followed them back, but I can't help feeling that it is a form of stalking.  Maybe I am just a bit old-fashioned.  What do members here think, as dancers, teachers and parents of pupils themselves.

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1 hour ago, Pas de Quatre said:

For some time I had been thinking of starting a thread on this topic, and the discussions on the "Potential" thread have prompted me to go ahead.  In many ways I think social media is a useful tool, I have enjoyed online classes and performances thoughout lockdown.  But everyone needs to be aware of the dangers of some content.  I am forever reminding pupils that there are photos of people in exaggerated poses that they shouldn't attempt to emulate, and also not to try to learn steps and tricks they see.  If I haven't taught it to them yet, it is because they aren't ready yet.

 

Like many people I started on Facebook some years ago.  I have a personal account, a private group for my school and a school page.  Over time I have evolved my own set of rules, with a few mistakes along the way.  My personal account really is personal.  All my friends are people I actually know.  As well as family and non dance friends, there are other teachers and dance world contacts, and also some ex pupils.  I found it counter-productive to be friends with parents of current pupils or the pupils themselves.  That is why I set up the private school group.  However, on my personal account I have also accepted friend requests from former pupils who are over 18, and it is a lovely way to keep in touch and see what they are doing.

 

It is on Instagram that I have not yet worked out the best way forward and would love to hear others' opinions.  There I have a school listing and I follow several big companies and well known dancers.  No problem there.  Again it is with pupils that I am not sure how best to handle it.  Older ones, fine.  But with younger ones or parents, I know they would be flattered if I followed them back, but I can't help feeling that it is a form of stalking.  Maybe I am just a bit old-fashioned.  What do members here think, as dancers, teachers and parents of pupils themselves.

 

I’m with you, Pas de Quatre.  As I said in the other thread, we were very strict with social media and internet access in general when dd was younger.  The only PC was in the living room, in full view of DH and I passing by.  We did the CEOP “Think u know” websites with her at the various stages.  Unlike many of her friends, she was not allowed to make any social media accounts before age 13, by means of putting a false birth year in.  She also had to be “friends” with DH and I, and we went through her privacy settings with her so that only friends of friends (and people she knew in real life) could send requests.  

 

Instagram and TikTok weren’t around then but had they been, she would have been subject to the same conditions.  Now she’s over 18, I remind her that she doesn’t have to still be “friends” with us, but she still is. 🤷🏻‍♀️ Her IG account is still private by choice.

 

I would refuse friend requests from young people until they were 16, not because I’m a teacher (in which case, I agree with you that 18+ is sensible) but because if I want to put anything with swearing or whatever on my own FB page, I can.  

 

Just being a ballet-dancing teenage girl gave dd body issues and these became worse during her short time at 16+ full time training.  Now she’s no longer on the ballet roller coaster, these have improved but she says herself that Instagram can exacerbate them.  When stressed, she, like many of us, can get “hooked” on Youtube with autoplay on, or “doomscrolling” endlessly on Instagram (Twitter’s my “dangerzone” for doomscrolling).

 

Then, a month or two ago, we all watched “The Social Dilemma” on Netflix, which was an absolute eye-opener.  If anyone doesn’t have Netflix, it’s a documentary about a group of Social Media executives who were responsible for designing the addictive algorithms behind Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.  They explain *how* these sites make money out of us and how they keep us hooked.  None of them now work for the “monsters” they helped create, and tellingly, none of their children are allowed Social Media.  After being on Twitter myself for 11 years and hating how many bullies, trolls and sock-puppet accounts are now on there, doling out verbal abuse to anyone they disagree with, I locked my account and went “cold turkey”.  Having never had an email from Twitter in 11 years, I suddenly started to get multiple emails every day, saying “You missed this post”, “You have notifications” - literally the algorithms realising that I’d stopped posting, exactly as the documentary had said.  

 

I’ve noticed that on Instagram, more positive and more honest accounts are out there - influencers admitting that they’re so tired of starving themselves and using layers and layers of filters just to get the perfect Insta shot.  There are those who deliberately post “warts and all” to show they have spots, a “bad skin day”, they have bums, thighs and wobbly bits just like we all do.  There are dancers who never post themselves over-stretching, tilting and so on, and those are the ones I like to follow. Even if an adult professional does it, it’s their choice as an adult  but I won’t “like” that particular picture.   Good sites to follow are Cloud & Victory (they currently have an interview with Miko Fogarty on why she stopped dancing) and em clarkson, daughter of Jeremy Clarkson, who is very affirming and honest.

 

Social Media sites *can* be great; they can be invaluable for keeping in touch, especially during lockdown, they can be funny, informative, useful - BUT they can be toxic, misogynistic, a hotbed for bullying, they can exacerbate body issues and insecurities, and they can be more addictive than drugs.  And these latter things are exactly what they’re designed to do - which is why the people who helped create them now wish they had not.

 

 

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Anna, you make me ever more glad that I've never got caught up in social media :(  It's really frustrating, though, when people start setting up "professional" (and other high-interest - you'll know what I mean) groups on Facebook.

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2 minutes ago, alison said:

Anna, you make me ever more glad that I've never got caught up in social media :(  It's really frustrating, though, when people start setting up "professional" (and other high-interest - you'll know what I mean) groups on Facebook.

 

Yep.  I find Facebook one of the most manageable sites but even so, I have all my privacy settings set to maximum.  Even so, on public pages, I still have to remind myself to block/mute trolls rather than getting into a discussion with them.  

 

On Instagram you can have a locked/private account but still comment on public pages, whereas on Twitter, if you want to be able to interact with shops/pages/organisations or anyone who doesn’t follow you, your account has to be public which means the entire world can see your tweets.  Only recently have they added options for who can reply to you, but for me it was too little, too late.  I still like to interact with shops and businesses as it’s the fastest way to get in touch with them but I made a new, public account and ALL I do on there is interact with shops when necessary.  Life for me has been much calmer without Twitter.  

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I used to think it was slightly off for schools etc to name their pupils on their school Facebook or Instagram accounts - ie, it was one thing to say they had X number of pupils accepted into this or that, but a completely different kettle of fish to actually name them publicly. However, it seems to be common practice, so I seem to be out of touch with this, and is it any different to naming them on their website? I completely understand that all of this is part of advertising, though, so I sort of see why they do it, but it still makes me feel a little uncomfortable.
 

Regarding Instagram, if you have a school account, your pupils could follow the school, but I don’t think the school should follow any of its pupils. It seems unprofessional to me. 

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25 minutes ago, rowan said:

I used to think it was slightly off for schools etc to name their pupils on their school Facebook or Instagram accounts - ie, it was one thing to say they had X number of pupils accepted into this or that, but a completely different kettle of fish to actually name them publicly. However, it seems to be common practice, so I seem to be out of touch with this, and is it any different to naming them on their website? I completely understand that all of this is part of advertising, though, so I sort of see why they do it, but it still makes me feel a little uncomfortable.
 

Regarding Instagram, if you have a school account, your pupils could follow the school, but I don’t think the school should follow any of its pupils. It seems unprofessional to me. 

 

Dd’s old school used to use first names only when announcing places - that seemed a sensible balance.

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It's certainly a double edged sword. Not dance, but I run the social media accounts for a couple of sports organisations and have mixed feelings about it. I think that in this day and age it is more or less impossible not to have a social media presence simply because everyone else does and it tends to be the first place people go for information. 

In some ways I love it. It makes life so much easier to be able to write "Training cancelled tonight due to bad weather sorry" once and know that the message is out within seconds than to try to call everyone, and during the pandemic it has been a great way to keep in touch with members.

But, I am acutely aware of the pitfalls. I don't accept friend requests on my personal accounts from under 18s apart from one or two who really are friends as our families are close. Any pictures I post from training or competitions are very general with no names, or occasionally just first names. I am very careful about what links I share, especially anything related to nutrition and I delete any comments I think could be damaging. I've stuck to Facebook predominantly though we do gave a Twitter account too. I've steered clear of Instagram despite it seemingly being the youngsters' preferred option. I don't  really "get" Instagram and it seems the more toxic environment to me - but maybe that's because I'm old and don't really understand it. And to be honest, it's the parents that are my target audience at least as much as the young people and most ofvtgem use FB.

I think social media is here to stay whether we like it ir not, so we have to embrace it and try to use it wisely, but it certainly has the potential to cause great harm if we're not very careful.

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I think there are issues and not just with schools and youngsters.

 

I have noticed that many of the ballet companies now issue announcements on social media first.  I suspect it is because anyone with the permissions to can easily put out an announcement whereas it can be harder or cost money to amend the official website.  My friends who are not on social media find this very annoying and, to an extent, so do I.

 

Facebook is a great way of keeping in touch with friends and family and over the years since I have joined there is lots of security that you can put in place to make your account more secure (OK I know I am teaching my grandmothers to suck eggs here!).  Now I only befriend people whom I know.  When I first joined, if someone send me a friend's request I accepted but I am much more cautious now.    I have also needed to block the occasional person.  I could do without FB except for the fact that it is used for the Road Action Group I am a member of to get information to us all quickly.

 

I really like Instagram because I use it as a way of posting my photographs and I find it a less personal way of following favourite dancers and others I admire but am not friends with.  Although my IG account is public I would recommend anyone posting pictures of youngsters makes their account private so that followers have to be approved.

 

I have phases of loving and loathing twitter but again I am tied in because I tweet on behalf of the BalletCo Forum when I am doing the links and I also maintain a Friends' twitter account.  Two other ladies and I were accused of being trolls a couple of years ago because we all found a review (linked on twitter) that we found offensive and we responded to the tweet.  I did not know the other 2 ladies and we had not in any way consulted on the issue before tweeting!

 

I'm not an active user on any other of the social media platforms.

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I run my DS social media account it is set to private , there are positive and negatives, but it also down to the person how they deal with social media. We do not use it to compare DS to other children he is what he is and can do what he can do end of. I post a journey of his adventures initially it was a sport he was doing an now dance. through this account, he has had the most amazing opportunities, made amazing friends and he wouldn't be on the once a month associate programme he is now which helped him immensely after his confidence being so low from a sport, that made him not want to live anymore - aged 8 at the time!!

I know some parent judge us for posting, and that's fine , because I could not give two hoots. We are realistic on our account it is a mix of cool edited photos fun videos and general everyday type ones, all to document a journey nothing too serious. 

He does not see messages unless I show him, he does not deal with friend requests and he comments on things that are appropriate under my watchful eye. He promotes encouragement and positivity to others and is not harming anyone in any way. 

 

If you choose to look at other accounts and judge your own child or compare them to others then that is a question for yourself, if you use social media as a source of information for events, celebrating other achievements and  celebrating your own child and not to take anything to seriously there would be a lot of happier people. I think people get to caught up in it and read into things way too much. 

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They say comparison is the thief of joy, don’t they.  I agree that it’s easy to read too much into things, but people getting “too caught up in it” is exactly what the people behind social media want to happen. 

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48 minutes ago, Anna C said:

They say comparison is the thief of joy, don’t they.  I agree that it’s easy to read too much into things, but people getting “too caught up in it” is exactly what the people behind social media want to happen. 

yes, I agree

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I have a private insta account and set up a separate profile- though it’s MY account for my 12yr old for dancing. This means that I get to see all the notifications that come in, I get to see and approve who wants to follow her- and mostly it’s her dance friends or others from her associate scheme. Made very clear it’s for dance only and She understands that until she’s older she has to get our ok before she posts anything. Other than her dancing friends, she follows professional dancers and companies, dancewear companies she likes, her dance school account and associates account. She finds it inspiring to see what everyone is doing and in lockdown particularly because she has seen how hard even the ‘professionals who have made it’ have had to work and diversify, the resilience they have had to show etc and has found it a very supportive community of like minded people. 
 

 We need to give these youngsters more credit sometimes I think, this is the world they are operating in -like it or not- and having had some frank discussions with her and her friends they are under no illusions that for the most part the ‘wow’ images are an edited snapshot. They know the move was done 30 odd times to get that shot - and not that the dancer pulls it off perfectly every time. They know it’s been edited. They know.

 

Totally appreciate the flip side and huge respect for those that manage/choose to avoid social media altogether, but certainly we took the view that we would start early- when it was easier for us to control it and we’ve found insta a really useful way of teaching about social media and online safety, marketing etc.

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My DD has a dance Instagram account which is logged onto both on her phone and on mine. Technically it's my account  - my email/dob at sign up lol! - but it's about her and she selects photos/videos to post and I vet them. The account itself is set to private and while she follows dance brands, various dance schools (including her own), other dancers she has met at classes etc, selected school friends etc she only accepts people she's actually met. I'm happy with that aspect - however I sometimes despair at the amount of time she spends viewing the numerous Instagram accounts out there! 

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My personal thoughts on social media is that its important to follow only what you want to follow, and not get caught up in the things you don't.  Its so easy to 'take the bait' and be provoked by things we don't want to see and hear. The luxury of Instagram is that we can follow what we like to follow, and unfollow/block/mute/ignore the things we don't want to.  Like newspapers, we don't read all of them, we probably find the ones that reflect our personal values.  I know perfectly well the ones not to read as they will do nothing but enrage me.  At the same time, I have to respect that someone else likes them, enjoys that content, and we need to respectfully coexist.  

 

7/10 things that I learn come from social media, especially applications opportunities, dates, looming deadlines. As a source of information its a goldmine.  I think we need to be mindful of our own interpretation of 'misinformation'.  I personally think one of the most misleading things floating around the world of dance are the posts showing extreme levels of flexibility.  It could easily make a child, or more specifically their parents think that this is 'essential' for this ballet journey. I see courses advertised 'promising results in 2 weeks' that are probably dangerous to young bodies.  Good for the kids that have this, good for kids/parents that want to pursue this, and good for their freedom to post it.  In my own view its clearly not a requirement of classical ballet, so again, I choose to ignore/mute/unfollow that kind of content.  I'm powerless to stop it being produced.

 

I also agree with comments about the 'wow' images.  They are a microsecond of a moment in time.  They might show a child mid air, but they don't show the quality of the launch, balance and landing.  I'm not saying that that image is for me to 'judge' but I certainly wouldn't use it as any reference for comparison.  My own DS's dance journey is his alone and I frequently remind him that he can only be the best version of himself, not of someone else.  Our own 'wow images' are maybe a source of personal pride, but we wouldn't expect others to view them as anything other than an image of someone else's child.

 

I know for my own DS, ballet is one of the few area where he gets to shine and feel good about himself.  So I think we need to be mindful that everyone has a backstory and we will never know what it is.  If we post an image of a 'success' it mostly so friends and family around the world get to see and hear about it.  Its certainly not posted for someone to make a 'comparison' of any sort, or to 'become known', neither of which would have any bearing on his dance journey, which will purely be down to his own hard work and dedication.

 

So referring back to the title of this topic, I choose to follow what I think it 'good', avoid what I think is 'bad' and block/unfollow/mute what I perceive to be 'ugly'.

 

 

 

 

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We have a private ballet account for DC which lives on my phone. It’s fun to be able to follow other dancers, and during lockdown it was a great way to find out about zoom classes which she really enjoyed doing. We have posted a handful of photos. To try and keep it safe, we do the following:

- we don’t have her full name on her profile

- we don’t geo tag any photos 

- we don’t have her ballet school, academic school or any other identifying info in her profile 

I realise this is partly futile as anyone with enough time in their hands could find her on her ballet school’s account, where she appears a couple of times, and then they would know roughly where we live etc, but it makes us feel better to be a bit more anonymous. She also doesn’t have a lot of followers.

 

in contrast we know a very young child whose mother has her daughter’s first and last name in the profile of her public account, and they have bought advertising (sponsored posts) to gain more followers. The child is also in her school uniform photographed outside their front door on a few photos. Personally this makes me feel a bit uneasy. 
 

and it’s not just about security. I recently read an article about insta famous children, and how they feel about having their most private moments made public at the whim of their parents, and how they feel that they have to produce ‘content’ at all times, as though they are always performing to some extent. Granted this probably won’t be someone with a ballet account, as this is so specific to the activity, this would rather be the youtubers who think their family is their ‘brand’ and so on. But I still think about it.

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The stretching for ‘oversplits’ posts on Instagram. Gosh, yes. They are scary!!! If you are not training as a contortionist, is there any benefit to them? I took part in gymnastics into my teens and we never did oversplits (ever!). It seems a relatively new thing - last 20 or so years maybe? 

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Another gut-feeling is that the Covid pandemic and lockdowns just vastly accelerated what was already happening.  People talked about decline of high street shopping etc, then lockdown just accelerated that decline, as we became reliant on it much more rapidly.  Brands and organizations (including dance schools and studios) might have had some social media presence, but lockdown accelerated their (inevitable) reliance on that, and that quickly became one of their primary means of communication, so subsequently our primary means of receiving information.  The fact that many organizations have more up-to-date information available on their social media accounts only goes to demonstrate how effective it is for 'quick communication', given websites can be costly and cumbersome to update. 

 

The sudden move to online learning, and schools and tutors promoting that through social media, by consequence, accelerated the use of students/parents showing their participation.  

 

Maybe this shift wouldn't have felt so radical and uncomfortable had it happened a little more 'naturally/organically' that the seismic-shift that Covid created.

 

I don't know about other parents, but lockdown bought a real angst about my sons progression, not just in education, but also socially (in terms of friendships) and in his dance journey. I went on my own personal scramble for information, zoom courses, tutors, free classes etc... anything to not bring it all to a screeching and maybe irreversible halt!

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3 minutes ago, BalletBoysDad said:

Another gut-feeling is that the Covid pandemic and lockdowns just vastly accelerated what was already happening.  People talked about decline of high street shopping etc, then lockdown just accelerated that decline, as we became reliant on it much more rapidly.  Brands and organizations (including dance schools and studios) might have had some social media presence, but lockdown accelerated their (inevitable) reliance on that, and that quickly became one of their primary means of communication, so subsequently our primary means of receiving information.  The fact that many organizations have more up-to-date information available on their social media accounts only goes to demonstrate how effective it is for 'quick communication', given websites can be costly and cumbersome to update. 

 

The sudden move to online learning, and schools and tutors promoting that through social media, by consequence, accelerated the use of students/parents showing their participation.  

 

Maybe this shift wouldn't have felt so radical and uncomfortable had it happened a little more 'naturally/organically' that the seismic-shift that Covid created.

 

I don't know about other parents, but lockdown bought a real angst about my sons progression, not just in education, but also socially (in terms of friendships) and in his dance journey. I went on my own personal scramble for information, zoom courses, tutors, free classes etc... anything to not bring it all to a screeching and maybe irreversible halt!

Yes! I’ve had an Instagram account for a few years (and only ever put on 3 photos in that time) but only as the lockdowns began did I start really using it. Both as a means to connect with others (and maybe boredom added to the use...the dreaded doom-scrolling!! ) but also to find info as our children’s training was indefinitely halted at that point. It became a desperate scramble for something, anything (ballet and fitness wise) to keep them motivated. 

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12 hours ago, OnlyDance said:

however I sometimes despair at the amount of time she spends viewing the numerous Instagram accounts out there! 

 

I think setting a timer for social media use (and monitoring screen time in general) can be very useful. 

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2 hours ago, BalletBoyMumma said:

Yes! I’ve had an Instagram account for a few years (and only ever put on 3 photos in that time) but only as the lockdowns began did I start really using it. Both as a means to connect with others (and maybe boredom added to the use...the dreaded doom-scrolling!! ) but also to find info as our children’s training was indefinitely halted at that point. It became a desperate scramble for something, anything (ballet and fitness wise) to keep them motivated. 

Yes, me too. I went from a kind of ‘under-use’ to ‘over-use’ and still haven’t found the happy medium. But I think I it’s definitely true what you said, that there was a desperate scramble to find info, activity etc, and for some people to show that they were still dancing. With people’s income drying up, it’s no surprise some tutors/schools sought income via zoom and social media, and subsequently no surprise that children/parents showed their participation in classes given ‘real life’ had came to a crashing halt. 

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2 hours ago, Anna C said:

 

I think setting a timer for social media use (and monitoring screen time in general) can be very useful. 

I’ve tried to apply that to myself. Even my partner says ‘are you still looking at that ballet forum?’  😂 

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4 minutes ago, BalletBoysDad said:

I’ve tried to apply that to myself. Even my partner says ‘are you still looking at that ballet forum?’  😂 

 

😆😆 Yes, we set up “screen time” on our ipads after watching “The Social Dilemma”.  Bit jaw dropping! 

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On 28/03/2021 at 10:42, Pas de Quatre said:

It is on Instagram that I have not yet worked out the best way forward and would love to hear others' opinions.  There I have a school listing and I follow several big companies and well known dancers.  No problem there.  Again it is with pupils that I am not sure how best to handle it.  Older ones, fine.  But with younger ones or parents, I know they would be flattered if I followed them back, but I can't help feeling that it is a form of stalking.  Maybe I am just a bit old-fashioned.  What do members here think, as dancers, teachers and parents of pupils themselves.

Perhaps you could announce on social media that the school has a policy of not 'following' or commenting on any students under the age of 18 on instagram etc.

Edited by taxi4ballet
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I think there have been a lot of presumptions made about future use of the internet. However, none of us in my house like zoom classes and we’re all totally fed up of internet shopping. We like the social aspect of actual interaction and getting some different scenery!

the young dancer Instagram accounts seem to be mainly about getting free stuff and being an ‘influencer’. 

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10 hours ago, Peony said:

I think there have been a lot of presumptions made about future use of the internet. However, none of us in my house like zoom classes and we’re all totally fed up of internet shopping. We like the social aspect of actual interaction and getting some different scenery!

the young dancer Instagram accounts seem to be mainly about getting free stuff and being an ‘influencer’. 

 

Not that I'm a dancer but I am heartily sick and tired of zoom meetings and I can't wait to get back into a real shop and browse!!

 

Having said that, I have loved some of the zoom events I have attended - particularly the London Ballet Circle talks.  They have given me the opportunity to attend events that I wouldn't usually be able to as I couldn't justify the expense of an overnight trip to London to attend in person.

 

I don't think anyone has mentioned also that WHAT GOES ON THE INTERNET STAYS ON THE INTERNET.  On FB for example even if you amend or delete a post it is still there on the automatic backups that would have been taken.  I am sure that IG and twitter must be the same.

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As much as I hate a zoom meeting, and much prefer talking in 'real life', I'll be very interested to see if the concept of 'zoom' tuition stays with us some time, grows in popularity, or fades away over time...

 

What it has been able to do is bring students/teachers closer together who would otherwise have been separated by distance.  It might have bought great quality tuition to someone in a remote area etc, and might go some way to dispel that myth (if there is indeed one) that children close to major centres have more opportunity than those who don't.  

 

For my own DS, I noted that some private zoom classes that were MUCH cheaper than a live lesson in a studio yielded some really positive results.  I though 'zoom-fatigue' might set in but was pleasantly surprised that my DS knew it was that or nothing, and he didn't want to do nothing. Being in the home environment, my DS felt very relaxed, and really absorbed what he was hearing.  There was no fear or anxiety in making a mistake amongst a group.

 

I'm not saying I would want him to do zoom-only.  He/we cannot wait for him to get back to studio life, make friends, see his tutor in front of him rather than behind a screen.  But I do think zoom teaching has its benefits for some children, and I'm intrigued as to it's future....

 

 

 

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I think it depends on the age and level of the dancer, because I do think with beginners of any age, and certainly with children, there are times when a Teacher really needs to be hands-on (with parental permission), which is of course not possible remotely.   Being hypermobile, my dd has low proprioception, so when learning the basics, until the correct position was firmly ingrained in muscle memory, her local Teacher would literally have to place her hands firmly on the muscle/ligament that was working.   As I said in another thread, dd’s wonderful Dance Physio once said to her “Practice doesn’t make perfect, it makes permanent”, i.e. do it slightly incorrectly enough times and it will become muscle memory.  

 

I definitely think Zoom classes are better than nothing, and they can bring top class workshops to intermediate/advanced dancers regardless of location, but for children, they’re not a long term substitute for in-person, hands-on teaching (in my opinion). 

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I must be very lucky mum that my DD absolutely hates social media.  She said she envy my childhood (80s) where kids talked and socialised properly.

She had two instagram pages, one private with normal kids as she calls them and her ballet one.  She has removed her ballet profile completely end of last year.  

She got fed up of circus like looking images, uber healthy breakfasts posts and one trick ponies. 

The day she removed it she came and said...."mum this is the best feeling ever, it's like being free".

She is focusing her energy elsewhere and said that if her friends want to get in touch...they have her mobile number and can use what's up.

I see on her that she is much calmer, her mobile is completely ignored on a table for days. 

She has signed herself to various pages where they email lessons, workshops and news, makes her research and update when she needs. On her private profile I know she follows professional organisations to be up to speed with news but that's all. 

 

I feel that social media can be great source of information but also a sentence for some. It's all about who and how much you follow and how mature you are to handle information seen. Between the smaller ones I see the trend of being used as marketing tools I.e. brand ambassadors ... influencer seems to be the job description of many. 

 

As for Zoom, I believe it brought opportunity to have class with various companies and teachers which you otherwise would not have or only during intensives. She has picked up new corrections and styles and even rolled out her dance floor for 10pm class due to time difference. 

I had to buy lots of chocolates for our down stairs neighbour so he ignores her jumping. But despite the convenience of zoom it can not replace teaching in person and corrections that are applied by teacher. I hope this will not become a norm or replacement and another money making tool. 

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8 minutes ago, Anna C said:

I think it depends on the age and level of the dancer, because I do think with beginners of any age, and certainly with children, there are times when a Teacher really needs to be hands-on (with parental permission), which is of course not possible remotely.   Being hypermobile, my dd has low proprioception, so when learning the basics, until the correct position was firmly ingrained in muscle memory, her local Teacher would literally have to place her hands firmly on the muscle/ligament that was working.   As I said in another thread, dd’s wonderful Dance Physio once said to her “Practice doesn’t make perfect, it makes permanent”, i.e. do it slightly incorrectly enough times and it will become muscle memory.  

 

I definitely think Zoom classes are better than nothing, and they can bring top class workshops to intermediate/advanced dancers regardless of location, but for children, they’re not a long term substitute for in-person, hands-on teaching (in my opinion). 

Your comment on ‘practice makes permanent’ has definitely stuck in my mind, and it’s something I’m trying to navigate through the ‘post lockdown’ path....

 

As a consequence of our relocation during the first lockdown, we found ourselves in the ‘flip’ situation of having zero ballet tuition, all ‘left behind’ us in London. Rather than having good local tuition supplemented by associate programmes, my DS was successful at associate programmes and we struggled to find good local tuition. We found a great zoom teacher, but post-lockdown, that relationship would need to stay on zoom to continue. It works very well ‘in the mix’ right now, but of course I’m mindful to try and make good decisions in these very young formative years. 

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