Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

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jacquemarie
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Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

Postby jacquemarie » Sat Mar 27, 2021 3:37 am

Has anyone done this? Do they find it helpful?

I have met a few people who suggest making an Instagram, Twitter, or even an alternate Facebook page where you follow a bunch of people in your target language for everyday reading/writing practice. It seems like an okay idea. At the very least, you would get a lot of exposure to people from all regions and how they talk/write.

I've debated doing the same for myself, though probably not a Facebook page. I do follow a couple groups in my target language on there so I don't think I really need an alternate.

Pros/cons? Do you think this could be helpful or more of a time waster? Or something that could work but only if you really do it in a certain way?
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Le Baron
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Re: Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

Postby Le Baron » Sat Mar 27, 2021 5:37 pm

I do read the comments to videos in a target language on YouTube. When it's native content generally all the comments are in that language and I follow (or try to follow) the discussions; or even interact sometimes. You learn a lot about how people actually talk or write because the talk is very informal. When it's discussion of e.g. music or films or cooking regional dishes you learn stuff from the perspective of people in that language, including words you might never otherwise encounter. So it's good for that.

You also get to see that sometimes people also talk just as much nonsense in other languages; and make lots of mistakes, which if you recognise means you're getting better!

I don't know if I'd want to create an entire, dedicated profile though. I'd feel slightly pushed to constantly interact or else feel I'm 'neglecting' it. I like it better on a casual basis.
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Cenwalh
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Re: Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

Postby Cenwalh » Sat Mar 27, 2021 5:52 pm

I have a Youtube account for Catalan. It is so hard to find recommendations in Catalan normally, so I use this account to only watch videos that are in Catalan. Even then it recommends videos in Spanish and English, but it's far better than not doing it. It only takes a few seconds to switch between accounts so I think it's a really good idea to have a Youtube account for each language.

I don't really use other social media so haven't done this anywhere else, but for people who do use social media it seems reasonable.
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Re: Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

Postby Pegasusangel » Sat Mar 27, 2021 10:46 pm

I just use my regular accounts that I have to get stuff in my target languages suggested to me. I also try to find articles and things on the web for my target language. it is definitely a good thing to do because it helps you see how people talk and gives you a more firmer grasp on being fluent in the language (if that is what you are trying to achieve). You can also do things like find books in the target language, audio books in the target language, video games in the target language, etc. I truly believe immersion and daily practice is what helps you keep your skills polished in the targeted languages.
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Re: Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

Postby iguanamon » Sun Mar 28, 2021 2:59 am

jacquemarie wrote:Has anyone done this? Do they find it helpful?
I have met a few people who suggest making an Instagram, Twitter, or even an alternate Facebook page where you follow a bunch of people in your target language for everyday reading/writing practice. It seems like an okay idea. At the very least, you would get a lot of exposure to people from all regions and how they talk/write. ...

Yes, I do this, and, no, I certainly do not find it to be a waste of time. On the contrary, I find it to be integral to how I learn languages. A well curated Twitter feed is a great aid to me. I follow news sites; language academies/promoters; authors; scientists; poets (even dead poets and authors have accounts, tweeted by living people of course); singers; travel writers; the occasional politician; and even normal everyday people who are not famous. This gives me a wide variety of input. I get linked to interesting articles and videos I could never find myself. I can look at how language is used in the real world. I can comment and interact with people in L2. I can read how other people interact with the tweets. I find a lot to interest me via serendipity, which is becoming a lost art these days as more and more people only consume what interests them.

I advise anyone, even those at low levels, to try curating their own twitter feed. It's a lot easier and quicker to parse a short tweet than a long text. Doing this can provide real world language experience outside courses and can provide synergy with a course- see something in a tweet, see it later in the course and vice versa. It is most definitely not a waste of time. It is a much better use of a high beginner/low intermediate's time than trying to watch an L2 series with L1 subs.
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jacquemarie
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Re: Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

Postby jacquemarie » Thu Apr 01, 2021 11:43 pm

iguanamon wrote:Yes, I do this, and, no, I certainly do not find it to be a waste of time. On the contrary, I find it to be integral to how I learn languages. A well curated Twitter feed is a great aid to me. I follow news sites; language academies/promoters; authors; scientists; poets (even dead poets and authors have accounts, tweeted by living people of course); singers; travel writers; the occasional politician; and even normal everyday people who are not famous. This gives me a wide variety of input. I get linked to interesting articles and videos I could never find myself. I can look at how language is used in the real world. I can comment and interact with people in L2. I can read how other people interact with the tweets. I find a lot to interest me via serendipity, which is becoming a lost art these days as more and more people only consume what interests them.

I advise anyone, even those at low levels, to try curating their own twitter feed. It's a lot easier and quicker to parse a short tweet than a long text. Doing this can provide real world language experience outside courses and can provide synergy with a course- see something in a tweet, see it later in the course and vice versa. It is most definitely not a waste of time. It is a much better use of a high beginner/low intermediate's time than trying to watch an L2 series with L1 subs.



This is such a great response!!
I actually did end up making a twitter specifically for my Hindi -- It's been neat to see little snippets and while I typically disable my social media notifications, I made sure to keep Twitter's on because the little reminders to keep practicing helped. While I haven't sent any tweets yet, I have been watching a lot of political accounts and seeing how everyone interacts. It's been so weird, like I've unlocked a side of the internet I had not known about before.
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Re: Creating Social Media Platforms for Immersion in your Target Language

Postby Sumisu » Fri Apr 02, 2021 12:35 am

iguanamon wrote:Yes, I do this, and, no, I certainly do not find it to be a waste of time. On the contrary, I find it to be integral to how I learn languages. A well curated Twitter feed is a great aid to me. I follow news sites; language academies/promoters; authors; scientists; poets (even dead poets and authors have accounts, tweeted by living people of course); singers; travel writers; the occasional politician; and even normal everyday people who are not famous. This gives me a wide variety of input. I get linked to interesting articles and videos I could never find myself. I can look at how language is used in the real world. I can comment and interact with people in L2. I can read how other people interact with the tweets. I find a lot to interest me via serendipity, which is becoming a lost art these days as more and more people only consume what interests them.

I advise anyone, even those at low levels, to try curating their own twitter feed. It's a lot easier and quicker to parse a short tweet than a long text. Doing this can provide real world language experience outside courses and can provide synergy with a course- see something in a tweet, see it later in the course and vice versa. It is most definitely not a waste of time. It is a much better use of a high beginner/low intermediate's time than trying to watch an L2 series with L1 subs.


This is great advice, particularly the comment about serendipity and following a large variety of accounts. A mistake I made when I started adding accounts in my target language was just following a bunch of news sites. I quickly got bored with these, but started adding individual reporters to the mix. This was a little better, but still kind of boring. Then I branched out into food and video game accounts and that started to get the ball rolling as far as finding "real" people.

I would also recommend creating a separate List for your target language accounts in Twitter. For me at least, if I'm looking in my main feed just to waste time (which I do far too often...) I tend to skip over the non-English tweets. With a List, it's like having a separate account but you don't actually need to create a new account.
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