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Social Media: Argument


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. . . think about your own experiences with social media. To what extent have you come to rely on your friend’s profiles status updates, or Twitter feeds to mark events and occurrences in their lives? How much of your social life do you manage in person, and how much do you manage through the devices (cell phones, laptops, netbooks) that increasingly dominate our lives? –Alfano and O’Brien

Assignment Description: Choose one of the following topics:


Criticize or celebrate a form of social media for its effects on culture.


Argue whether or not the selfreflective aspect of Facebook leads to greater happiness, as Clive Thompson concludes in “I’m So Totally, Digitally, Close to You.”


Argue whether or not Twitter or other social media can be an effective tool for social activists (see Evgeny Morozov, “From Slacktivism to Activism”).

In order to earn a C or above, your essay should include the following:

At least two additional, reliable sources that you research on your own.

At least one article from “Social Lives and Social Media” section of Ch. 11 (summaries and paraphrases in your own words and sentence structure, as well as some brief, correctly integrated direct quotations).

A minimum of 4 FULL double-spaced pages (not 3-1/2 or 3-3/4). Every available line should be used.
Do not include a cover page.

12-point Times New Roman font and 1” margins.

An introduction that sets up your argument.

Effectively organized paragraphs with strong topic sentences and transitions.

Proper MLA page headers.

Proper MLA in-text citations for all paraphrases and direct quotations from the article.

A conclusion that does not merely restate your thesis but that leaves the reader with further ‘food for thought.’

A works cited page in correct MLA format (which does NOT count towards your page minimum) since you will be quoting and paraphrasing from at least two sources total.

Additional criteria:

A thesis that puts forth a clear, debatable argument.

Facts, statistics, and/or expert opinions that support your argument. You may include quotes when the language the writer uses either cannot be said any other way, or is so special you want to call attention to it. You should mostly summarize and paraphrase information from the researched articles you have found. Your essay should indicate that you have actually read and learned new information from your sources, not merely found a few things to quote.

When you do quote, the quotes should be properly integrated (no drop quotes) and use MLA style.

Clear and concise writing, with proper vocabulary.

You may use your own experiences and the experiences of others to support your ideas, but most of your support for your thesis should come from outside sources.





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