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Digital and Social Media Impact

 Impact of the Internet and Social Media on our daily lives and as a tool in turf

A growing number of turf mangers have used the internet to create websites or blogs to keep players or golfers informed regarding ongoing course or field improvement projects or current management practices. 
The most widely used, and easiest way to create a blog site is through Google's Blogger (http://blogger.com). For example, Steve Cook golf course superintendent at Oakland Hills Country Club in Detroit USA created this blogging site using Blogger (http://ohccturf.blogspot.com/)

Twitter and Facebook are the most popular forms of social media. Twitter is a form of blogging referred to as micro-blogging. Most people use Twitter to read postings from others. Twitter continues to keep its simplicity and singular focus while Facebook was developed to exchange personal information with family and friends and is increasing in complexity.
Facebook continues to mine users' information and push the bounds of personal privacy for commercial use, while Twitter attempts to a greater degree to protect the privacy of its users.

Twitter among turf professionals is growing. With the growing use of smartphones (ex. 23% of teenagers in the United States has a smartphone) Twitter is easily to use. It is similar to texting (messaging) but your "tweet" is received by all who are following you. The advantage of twitter is often you can post a picture of something you see in the field. For example if you were to observe a disease or weed, you could take a picture and with a short message send it to your followers.

Linkedln is part of social media like Facebook and Twitter but was developed as a network for people in professional networks. Here often times a resume is published along with recommendations. Updates on employment changes for example are provided to those in your professional group.

Two challenges facing turf managers is how to integrate websites or blogs with the social media outlets in an integrated efficient manner to maximize the information that you provide with as little time commitment as possible. The second challenge is how to process, and categorize the amount of information that you are receiving from the various websites and social media outlets.

Photograph: The popularity and use of smartphones has changed how we gather and retrieve information.