Topic 1#ONL241 Finding My Place in the Digital Ocean

Fotor AI, prompt by Vesna Bulatovic

Last week’s webinar inspired me to question myself, am I a digital Resident or a Visitor? White and Le Cornu’s framework suggests that Visitors view the web as a toolset, while Residents see it as a community – a place to connect and share with others (White & Le Cornu, 2011). I use various platforms and tools in my private mode, but I rarely dive deeper, hesitant to leave a lasting “footprint”. This got me thinking – how does my private digital identity compare to my role as a university teacher, where I actively use technology to connect and collaborate with my students and colleagues?

As a university teacher, I navigate various platforms with ease, using educational technology like Microsoft Teams and Moodle to connect with students and share resources with colleagues on platforms like ResearchGate and LinkedIn. I feel quite comfortable, almost at home in professional waters, sharing knowledge and resources. However, on social media, especially in comment sections, I worry about misinterpretation or being perceived as someone with less knowledge or outdated. I admit I’m comfortable posting on Instagram, as my profile is private and accessible only to my family and friends. This might seem contradictory to my openness in professional environments, and I am aware that I haven’t yet fully explored the interactive potential of social media. At present, I can say that I’m a capable swimmer, but I also recognize the fact that I need to push my boundaries and step outside my comfort zone to become more proficient. Perhaps engaging in meaningful online dialogues, even with the risk of judgment, could be a valuable step forward.

So, am I a seasoned diver or merely a snorkeler in the digital age? Perhaps the answer lies somewhere in between. White and Le Cornu (2011) also suggest that someone might be a Resident in their personal life but a Visitor professionally or vice versa, switching between Resident and Visitor approaches online depending on the context. By acknowledging my current limitations and trying to push my boundaries, I hope to evolve into a more confident and impactful digital citizen, both personally and professionally. As Beetham and Sharpe (2010) say, digital literacy is a journey that starts with basic abilities evolves into advanced skills, and even shapes our identity. After all, even experienced divers started somewhere, and the best way to learn to swim is to take the plunge.



  1. White, D. S., & Le Cornu, A. (2011). Visitors and Residents: A new typology for online engagement. First Monday, 16 (9).
  2. Beetham, H., & Sharpe, R. (2010). Rethinking Learning for a Digital Age. Routledge.