Group Project: Tracking Digital Footprints

Help find out what we're sharing on social media and why! Jim Colgan, digital editor of The Takeaway, discusses a project he conducted recently to make a connection with strangers solely using social media, and helps set it up for Brian Lehrer Show listeners.

→ Click here to see how to participate!

+ Step 1: Track Someone Down

On Twitter: Do a search for something you're interested in or use the service Nearby Tweets (or download FriendsAround for the ipad/iphone) to track down someone tweeting near your location.

On Facebook: Find someone NOT in your immediate circle - a friend of a friend or even more removed - and track them down. Send them a message, call them up, post on their wall.

+ Step 2: Have a Conversation

Whether on the phone, by email, or through chat, find out about the person you've tracked down. Be sure to use some of the information you found out about them to begin the conversation. eg "I see you like surfing." or "What brings you to Bryant Park?" Also ask about the experience of making a connection with a stranger, and why are they sharing?

+ Step 3: Report Back to Us by 11:45!

We want to hear from both the "contacters" and the "contactees". Either in the comments section below, by calling in to the show, on Facebook, or by Twitter, report back on your experience. What did you learn about the other person? How was it to make a connection with a stranger this way? Have your thoughts about social media and privacy changed as a result of this little exercise?