#3 Capstone Interview!

Today I had my Capstone interview in New York City! I interviewed Tali Horowitz. She is a friend of my computer teacher, Mr. Casal. Ms. Horowitz works at a non-profit organization named, Common Sense. They help kids, parents and teachers use the Internet appropriately. She started working with Common Sense in 2010. Her role in the organization is the Education Director. She gives talks about digital citizenship to help people have good character on the Internet.

When I was going to meet her, I was really excited because I had researched a lot about the things she works on. At the same time I was really nervous because it was the first interview I ever done. When I arrived at her office, she was finishing up a meeting. I waited for a little bit until she was ready. I looked over my question while I waited. Here are my questions:

  1. What made you interested in helping kids and parents use the Internet safely? How did you start working at Common Sense and what is your role?
  2. What are some of the biggest challenges you and your organization have faced recently?
  3. What are some of the changes you see happening in social media?
  4. How has social media been affected by President Trump’s use of social media?
  5. What do you think are the biggest risks for kids on social media?
  6. Do you feel differently about the various social media sites (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchap)? Are there sites that are better or worse kids?
  7. What should parents be doing to keep their kids safe on social media?
  8. If you could change anything about the way kids use social media, what would you change?
  9.  How do you think social media will change over the next five to ten years?
  10.  I am going to present my project to my classmates, what are the three top social media tips you would want me to share?

I was surprised by some of her answers. When she answered question three, she started talking about President Trump, which was my question five. I did not expect her to bring up President Trump on her own. She said that right now, we are in a particular time where the president is not showing a lot of respect on social media. He also is not showing a good example to kids on how to use social media. When kids see the President of the United States saying whatever he wants and not getting punished, kids don’t learn that it is not an okay way to act.

I learned that Common Sense puts a lot of hard work into keeping kids using the Internet the right way. They also work directly with the big social media companies to discuss features to help kids, like making the sites less addictive or allowing kids to take down posts that were mistakes.

Overall I had a great time at my interview and I learned a lot! I am really thankful to both Mr. Casal and Ms. Horowitz for taking the time to help me with my 5th grade Capstone project.

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