Month: November 2013

ILD 831 Cyber Bullying

Posted on Updated on

With the massive growth of users on social media platforms, cyber bullying has become a real problem. The perceived anonymity of comments can lead individuals to say or do things that they would not normally do (Cass & Anderson, 2011). Cyber bullying has been as the root of teen suicides and has become a hot topic even with President Obama (Shepperd, 2011). The U.S. Federal Government as well as State and Local Government have gotten involved to try to deter bullying on the Internet. The social media giant Facebook® has tried to deter cyber bullying by creating tools to address online harassment (Siner, 2013). Even with the increased awareness and the countless prevention programs, cyber bullying is still a serious issue amongst teens and young adults.

The United States Federal Government defines cyber bullying as “bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites. Examples of cyberbullying (sic) include mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites, and embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles” (Cyber Bullying, 2013). There are currently no Federal Statutes for cyber bullying. However, States are enacting their own cyber bullying statutes based on the federal definition of cyber bullying. With many statutes enacted by states, some states are tougher on cyber bullying than others and some states have not passed legislation to address online harassment. Only nineteen states have passed legislation for cyber bullying (State Cyberbullying Legislation, 2013). Of the nineteen states to pass legislation, California has passed the toughest laws against cyber bullying (Nelson, 2013).  The Department of Education has been instrumental in helping states to create policies as well as laws to prevent online harassment (Cyber Bullying, 2013). Over half of teens and young adults have reported that they have been victims of cyber bullying; and about the same number of teens and young adults have said they have participated in cyber bullying (Cyber Bullying Statistics, 2013).

With cyber bullying statistics on the rise and the teens and young adults moving into adulthood, will online harassment continue with them? Is there some a point when individuals outgrow this sort of thing? An article I found recently seems to uphold the fact that even adults find cyber bullying an acceptable way to act. In Georgia a group of moms would use Facebook® to make nasty comments about babies they considered to be ugly (Williams, 2013). Although most of us find this reprehensible, there are segments of society that are okay with this type of behavior. With the freedom the Internet gives to make comments, so many people now feel they have a voice and want to make that voice heard. Just looking at Yahoo articles, there is an area to post comments and to respond to other’s comments. Sometimes these comments are constructive, but most are negative and argumentative. But as a leader how do I create an environment that is free from cyber bullying?

I am not sure there is an answer for this. I know that creating policies in the work environment can deter most cyber bullying, but what can be done in the public sector? Every state has policies against bullying but only a handful of states have laws against cyber bullying (Cyber Bullying, 2013). Is it because there is so much gray area or that the Internet is so difficult to regulate? Even China is finding it hard to completely regulate the Internet, and their government is considered a totalitarian government with the ability to shutdown things they deem inappropriate for their citizens (Tanquintic-Misa, 2013). But even China suffers from individuals using the Internet to attack political policies as well as other individuals. So there seems to be nowhere where cyber bullying in some form is not present. I feel that by teaching proper online etiquette instead of just creating punishments; perhaps cyber bullying can be lessened. I do believe it is human nature to be critical of others, but it is how that criticism is directed that makes a difference. What do you think?


Cass, C., & Anderson, S. A. (2011, September 27th). Poll: Young People Say Online Meanness Pervasive and Serious. Retrieved from Huffington Post:

Cyber Bullying. (2013, November 25th). Retrieved from

Cyber Bullying Statistics. (2013, November 29th). Retrieved from Bullying Statistics:

Nelson, N. (2013, November 6th). Cyberbullying Laws – How Fast Are States Adapting? Retrieved from Chapman University School of Law:

Shepperd, S. (2011, March 10). White House Conference Tackles Bullying. Retrieved from CNN:

Siner, E. (2013, November 7th). Facebook Takes On Cyberbullies As More Teens Leave Site. Retrieved from NPR:

State Cyberbullying Legislation. (2013, November 29th). Retrieved from UNC:

Tanquintic-Misa, E. (2013, November 29th). China Heaves Sigh, Says Online Rumour Crackdown Successful. Retrieved from International Business Times:

Williams, D. (2013, November 13th). Moms on Facebook Bully Baby Girl’s Appearance. Retrieved from USA Today:

ILD 831 Week Five Assignment

Posted on Updated on

Friedman discusses the huge monetary savings that companies enjoy by outsourcing their redundant tasks that can be done cheaper in lower income countries.  He also explains that monetary savings should not be the only motivator to outsourcing work to other countries (Friedman, 2007). I completely agree that saving a few dollars should not be the motivation to look overseas for resources. However, as a leader I have to weigh in on the benefits currently and in the future. By being able to expand the organization’s knowledge base by going to outside of the current workforce, new ideas may change the direction of the company. The old adage of “thinking outside of the box” easily applies when individuals of differing backgrounds are added into the mix. Based on culture, education, and background people view life through a different prism. By sharing multiple points of view issues can be resolved faster, new ideas created, and new direction discovered. If creating a multinational solutions team and still saving money can be accomplished at the same time, then as a leader I am obligated to move the organization in that direction.

One thing I find interesting is that in the research Madden and Jones conducted, is that “nearly half of all Americans do at least some work from home” (Madden & Jones, 2008). I wonder if the data collected included those that are using their evening hours to complete projects or catch up on emails, yet the individuals are not work-from-home employees. I feel the Internet has made it so the amount of hours worked in a day has increased dramatically. No longer can an employee simply go home for the evening and then pick things up in the morning. As I travel around to do my job I find myself catching up on things when I get to my hotel room. Counting flights, visits to a customer site, and then doing catch up work in the hotel, I could be in a seventeen to twenty hour day. The scary things is with the use of in-flight Wi-Fi I can also do work in the air if need be. I have actually conversed with an engineer to troubleshoot an issue she was experiencing while I was flying. To me, the monopolizing of my time has become the hardest thing about the advances in technology that has allowed me to work at a remote employee.

A friend of mine, that is a corporate lawyer at IBM, and I were discussing my Ed.D. program last weekend. I told him that I was currently reading The World is Flat 3.0 and told me he had read the book several years earlier. What was fascinating to me is that he had intimate knowledge of the things that had taken place when IBM started their businesses in Bangalore. When I asked him about IBM starting their outsourcing in Bangalore he said that it was a much bigger headache than what they anticipated. The interfacing with the Bangalore engineers was very difficult as the protocols used by IBM were foreign to the Indian engineering team. It took a long time for the operation to overcome the many setbacks that occurred during the start up. The assimilation process did not take as long but there was still a lag over the engineering groups that were operating in the U.S. Eventually the cost of the India operations began to increase due to the demand for higher wages from the Bangalore group. Although the wages were still considerable less, the increase in wages and operating costs began to cut into the IBM profit margin. Based on my friend’s conversation, not every venture going into an emerging market is as rosy as Mr. Friedman makes it out to be.

There are a few pros that go with employees having free access to the Internet. Ease of research is the first one that comes to mind. Being able to Google a subject and have instant access to the answer is a huge advantage to an employee. The employee does not have to waste precious time tracking down the answer and the organization saves money by being able to maximize the usage of the employee. Another advantage is having remote employees for the organization. Having remote employees allows for the organization to operate in many time zones and can put a local presence in many countries. The instantaneous sharing of information is another advantage employees receive with free access to the Internet. The company can easily distribute information via email, a company website, and on a company Intranet if the organization has a Virtual Personal Network (VPN) set up. By being able to send out information effortlessly, the organization can keep all employees informed. Training can also be performed via Internet and I participate in online training with my company all of the time. The training can be something as simple as learning how to fill out the newest expense reports to compliance training.

There are also some cons to employees having free Internet access. The urge to view social media sights such as Facebook and MySpace distract employees from getting work accomplished. Studies reveal that companies have millions of dollars in lost productivity time with people doing social media at work (Woodward, 2013). Some employees may even use the free Internet to view porn sights. This is a huge issue and I have attended compliance training (online no less) at my company to address this particular issue. At my organization an employee will be fired if they are using a company computer and/or company Internet access to view porn. Sharing of vital company information is a big risk with employees using the Internet. Every year I have to participate in a security refresher training course that discusses proper usage of the Internet when discussing the company’s proprietary information on the Internet.

Turning challenges into opportunities is the goal of every leader. I would work to harness their desire for social media by having a social media site for the organization. Although it is not as personal or provide them the freedoms as with their normal social media site, it would give them an opportunity to share ideas, ask for assistance, and discuss issues. I am not a social media person so I am not too privy to all of the ins and outs of social media. My information comes mostly from the articles I read and the conversations I hear about social media. So I may be totally off base with this idea. What do you think?


Friedman, T. L. (2007). The World is Flat 3.0: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century. New York: Picador / Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Madden, M., & Jones, S. (2008). Networked Workers. Washington D.C.: Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project.

Woodward, D. (2013, November 20th). Research Claims Social Media Costs Millions in Lost Productivity. Retrieved from Director:

ILD 831 Week Four Assignment

Posted on Updated on

I am a prime example of how the flattening of the world has changed how I do my job. I work for a company that is global with major offices in thirty-five countries, three major offices in the United States, with the main headquarters located in Carlsbad California. Because of the speed of the Internet, cell phones, video conferencing, Virtual Private Network (VPN), and capabilities of sharing extremely large files I can be located anywhere that is near a major airport and still do my job. There are no restrictions for my location like when I first started working my first job when I got out of the Navy. Not all jobs at my organization provide this flexibility, but working in the engineering field doing customer support allows me to work more from home. I have to be located near a major airport in case I have to fly to a customer site or back to our corporate offices if travel is required.

The flexibility to be located anywhere in the world and do engineering work is a benefit to my organization since there can be work constantly occurring 24/7. As Friedman discussed about how workers in the U.S. would be finishing work and the workers in India would be waking up to take over the project we too have this working in our favor (Friedman, 2007). I have taken over some troubleshooting issues from fellow engineers in China and Japan when they are finished for the day. I’ve also provided support when they have gone into a weekend when it is still a workday for me in the United States.

As a leader I see the tremendous advantages to a flattened world when it comes to customer support. Having the ability to work on an issue twenty-four hours a day by sharing the information between engineers located in different time zones so when one group is at the end of their day another group takes over is a great example of getting the most for an investment. The amount of downtime a customer has to experience is lessened and this means a happy customer that is willing to invest more money in instrument purchases as well as purchases of service contracts. There are often situations that one or two persons in the world have experienced the issue and can share their expertise. This sharing of knowledge between different groups is an example of spontaneous work where the individuals are becoming more proactive to problem solving (Goasduff, 2010).

It is interesting that Mr. Friedman discusses how Ireland was an example of the benefits of the government making it easier to do business in a country (Friedman, 2007). Ireland had a huge boom in the economy while he had written the book, but it has since gone into a major recession. High unemployment returned to Ireland in 2008 and residential homes have lost fifty percent of their value (Irish Economy, 2013). Perhaps this is an example of a country that tried to attract too much business too soon. Friedman discussed how the Irish Government invested in educating the population, reducing business & property taxes, and making Ireland very attractive to high technology companies (Friedman, 2007). Although the Irish Government could not have predicted the slowing down of the global economy, if they had not taken a “go for broke” attitude perhaps their economy would be in a little better shape. I was in Ireland just two months ago and the locals are still suffering with a slowed economy. So as I read Friedman’s text, I am a little wary of all of the incredible successes experienced by all of these countries opening up their economies to technological advances hoping that this will be the cure all for their economic woes. Like the bubble bursting, will the flattening of the world create another bubble burst? Are we experiencing some of that now? When traditionally cheap labor is being outsourced to cheaper labor, when will it stop? Like Friedman discusses, there are factories in China that are undercutting each other and the profit margins are very small (Friedman, 2007). How can the world continue to sustain the profit margins becoming nonexistent yet still create manufacturing?


Friedman, T. L. (2007). The World is Flat 3.0: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century. New York: Picador / Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Goasduff, L. (2010, August 4th). Gartner Says the World of Work Will Witness 10 Changes During the Next 10 Years. Retrieved from Gartner:

Irish Economy. (2013, November 14th). Retrieved from ESRI :

ILD 831 Week Three Assignment

Posted on Updated on

The following questions will be reviewed on this week’s blog – Reflect on Friedman’s concept of the Triple Convergence and its relationship to knowledge management.  If knowledge is now socially developed, what is the role of leadership in knowledge management?

Friedman discusses Triple Convergence in three phases. The phases are: The ten world flattening events occurring, the creation of the platform used by the ten world flattening events, and the ability for emerging countries to collaborate like never before plus the creation of horizontal versus vertical hierarchies (Friedman, 2007). All the events lead to the creation a more level playing field when it comes to global partnerships and collaborations.  

The articles from Nancy Dixon about the Era of Knowledge Management were very enlightening. The growth of the knowledge based philosophy from a few keepers of knowledge to the sharing of all knowledge regardless of an individual’s position was informative. The old adage that knowledge is power seemed to fit right in with the first era of knowledge management were only a handful of individuals had the actual knowledge. I am actually a subject matter expert at my organization and my company’s protocol is to send out the information with the “school model” (Dixon, 2009). So I can see both sides as an individual that maintains the knowledge vault for my products and the individual who wants to make the knowledge vault accessible to everyone.

As a leader I would have to determine how to utilize the vast knowledge that my team would possess and use the world flattening platforms to get that knowledge out to the front line troops. Without the quick, easy, and affordable way to share vast data knowledge we would still be stuck in the first era of knowledge management. The ability for front line employees to share real-time experience with each other, fellow employees located throughout the world, as well as management is only possible with the reality of triple convergence and how it has shrunk the world. My leadership role would allow me to encourage employees to share their best practices, issues they’ve encountered, and quick ways to overcome issues that occurred.

Making the sharing of knowledge social acceptable in a business environment may be a difficult paradigm to break. The amount of hackers as well as individuals attempting to gather secret information makes senior managers wary of sharing too much information on a broad basis. Even Friedman discusses how only non-critical software related jobs are outsourced to India but the key design and critical information jobs are still maintained in Europe and America (Friedman, 2007). So as a leader I would have to ensure the security of my organization by monitoring information that is being shared with remote employees.

 If a leader does not understand the concept of getting the best product for the least amount of resources, then that leader will not last too long. But if the leader cannot maintain control of the resources being shared, the organization can suffer from theft may go out of business. It is a fine line to walk with sharing information and why there are many organizations that require compliance training as well as proprietary knowledge contracts.  



Dixon, N. (2009, May 2). Three Eras of Knowledge Management. Retrieved from

Friedman, T. L. (2007). The World is Flat 3.0: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century. New York: Picador / Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

ILD 831 Week Two: Exploring Web 2.0 Assignment – Skype

Posted on Updated on

Skype® is a communication tool that provides voice, video, and text message capabilities. It is a software program that can be downloaded to a PC or MAC and operates as a voice-over-IP service (VoIP) (About Skype, 2013). Skype® originally started as a peer-to-peer sharing program for voice connection. The premise was that with an Internet connection anyone in the world could use a microphone and speakers/headset to talk to one another (Aamoth, 2011). The best part about Skype® was that the program was free and there were no user fees.

Skype® expanded its capabilities to include video conferencing, texting, and also introduced the capability to call and receive calls from regular as well as cell phone with per minute charges (Aamoth, 2011). Microsoft® saw the potential in Skype® and acquired the company October 13th, 2011 for $8.5 billion (Microsoft Officially Welcomes Skype, 2011).

I personally use Skype® and it was introduced to me while I was participating in my M.S. in Negotiation and Dispute Resolution Program at Creighton University. At first I thought it was a novelty and that I would be using it to collaborate on projects with my fellow classmates. The ability to video conference for free was fantastic as we were able to share items in real-time while conferencing by holding it up to the camera instead of having to email and wait for the delivery delays. But there were times when Internet connection speeds would affect some of my classmates and their screens would freeze up or they would get logged off.

My practicum for my M.S. Program was to mediate for an organization called Soliya®. Soliya® is an organization endorsed by the United Nations that provides the opportunity for college students of Western Culture to interact college students of Muslim Culture through the use of Skype® (Soliya Home Page, 2013). During my mediation sessions the students would log on and begin video chatting and we would discuss preselected topics as well as open the forum to new topics the students would like to discuss. The sessions were fascinating and I was able to get a glimpse into the Muslim Culture that I would not normally get a chance to experience as well as see how the youth of the day viewed each other over difficult topics and issues. At the end of each session I was required to fill out a log that asked me to discuss the topics covered, the interaction of the students, and the body language displayed by the students. The body language portion was the most interesting as there were times that the body language did not match the tone of the voice of the person. Without Skpye® video conferencing, I would have not been able to see their body language. There were a few times I had to stop a discussion because one or more of the students would be visibly agitated and I could see the discussion going down a bad path. Being able to see how students were reacting help the session be constructive versus destructive.

As a leader it is imperative to know your audience as well as see the feedback the audience is providing. Skype® is a tool that can be used to be in constant communication with people. The video conferencing capability of Skype® rivals video conferencing software such as Cisco WebEx® (Cisco WebEx Meetings, 2013). As a cost cutting measure Skype® can be implemented to lower costs for global communication. With all of the emphasis of leadership to do more with less, it is also a good idea to find a cost-effective reliable solution to communication.

There are a few downsides to Skype®. The free video conferencing capability is limited for Skype® and there is a monthly fee associated with wanting to host large groups. The quality also suffers when there are a large number of people on the video conference or if there is a voice only conference. The quality is dependent on the bandwidth available and is also affected by the upload/download rates of the participants. During video conferences I have had people drop off in mid sentence and then have difficulty logging back into the conference. There is an instant text message capability but there is not a capability to do interactive drawing like with Twiddla White Board® in order to share ideas (Twiddla Home Page, 2013).

Since the communications take place on the Internet, if there is not an Internet connection then there can be no communication. It seems simplistic, but there are spots that do not have Wi-Fi capability and there have been times when I have experienced not being to log into the Internet. There is also a concern about the security of what is being shared in Skype®. There should always be a worry about encryption especially if very sensitive material is being sent via the instant message capability. With so many hackers I am always concerned about security. It is already known that hackers are able to hijack web cams and that this could lead to a compromise of sensitive information (Ehling, 2012).

There are many upsides to Skype® usage but I am not sure that the main usage should be in the business world. I feel that Skype® is perfect for personal use as well as use for distance learners. I will continue to use Skype® to speak with my Education Advisor Dr. Ehrlich as well as communicate with fellow classmates.


Aamoth, D. (2011, May 10th). A Brief History of Skype. Retrieved from Time Tech:

About Skype. (2013, November 2nd). Retrieved from Skype:

Cisco WebEx Meetings. (2013, November 1st). Retrieved from Cisco:

Ehling, J. (2012, December 12th). FBI wanrs Against People Hacking into Web Cams. Retrieved from ABC 13:

Microsoft Officially Welcomes Skype. (2011, October 11th). Retrieved from Microsoft:

Soliya Home Page. (2013, November 1st). Retrieved from Soliya:

Twiddla Home Page. (2013, November 1st). Retrieved from Twiddla:


ILD 831 Week Two Assignment

Posted on Updated on

I found the creation of the World Wide Web, email protocols, and web browsing really fascinating. I had heard the terms FTP (File Transfer Protocol), HTML (HyperText Markup Language), HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol), TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol), XML (Extensible Markup Language), VPN (Virtual Private Network) when I started working for my first company outside of the Navy (Friedman, 2007). But I had no idea what any of it meant or how these acronyms would affect my life. The relative ease of use of the Internet has created e-commerce, the capability of collaboration for large projects, distance learning, and working as a remote employee. Noble prize winner Tim Berners-Lee and his creation of a World Wide Web (WWW) while working at CERN, the European Particle Physics Laboratory, displayed great leadership to resolve an issue with sharing of information with other scientists (Tim Berners-Lee, 2013). He was also an amazing person because he didn’t want the money associated with his creation and wanted to share his creation with the world. Much like Tesla forgoing his patent payments so that Westinghouse could attract investors, Berners-Lee saw the benefit to human-kind and wanted to make sure he improved the human condition (Socerer of Lightening: Nikola Tesla, 2013).    

The multiple examples of open source code and how individuals can do community developed software to improve the code for everyone’s use displays the power of how an individual can challenge big business companies (Friedman, 2007). The ability of programmers to create something that they need versus only taking what companies can offer shows a non-conformist attitude that has help to flatten the world. This same attitude is driving companies to work with customers instead of having a “take it or leave it” attitude. The story of how IBM created software based off of Apache source code displayed great leadership by the then IBM senior executive John Swainson when he took the risk of using non-proprietary software to base IBM proprietary software (Friedman, 2007).       

The explosion of quality Indian engineering labor during Y2K and the subsequent dot com bubble burst would never have happened without the overgrowth of the fiber optic cables (Friedman, 2007). When I was in the Navy from ’87 – ’93 there were a lot of guys I knew that were getting out and going to work for companies that would be laying these fiber optic cables. They spoke about the huge amount of money they would be able to make and they wanted ex-military guys because they would work hard and never complain. They also all spoke about how this would be their job forever due to the high volume of work that needed to be completed. I never pursued that opportunity and after reading Friedman’s account of the bust of the Fiber Optic Industry, I would say I made the right decision. The overbuilding of the fiber optic networks created a bust for many that invested their money in the industry but created a boon for the future of global networking (Blumenstein, 2001).

Bringing Japan to Bentonville AK was really interesting to me. I had seen a documentary on Sam Walton but did not know this aspect. His revolutionary idea to move the supply chains closer to the actual stores was creativity at its best. He also was willing to slash the wholesale margins to increase the amount of volume sold. Mr. Walton did not invent the retail business, he used his leadership skills, hard work ethic, and knowledge of the business to make Wal-Mart a retail giant (Sam Walton: Bargain Basement Billionaire, 2008).

Friedman cites so many examples of how creativity changed and flattened the world. Each individual being interviewed or referenced by Mr. Friedman showed leadership at its finest. Determining what the core issue was, finding value in the solution, and then finding ways to resolve that issue is what is at the core of leadership. Sometime the issue revolved around lack of funding, around a lack of efficiency, or individual/group needs, but they all required innovation and a strong individual to lead that change.


Blumenstein, R. (2001, June 18th). Overbuilt Web: How the fiber barons plunged the nation into a telecom glut — Qwest and Level 3 battled while demand stalled; outlook is tough for one — a clash of two billionaires. Retrieved from Lubbock Avalanche-Journal:

Friedman, T. L. (2007). The World is Flat 3.0: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century. New York: Picador / Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Sam Walton: Bargain Basement Billionaire. (2008, October 8th). Retrieved from Entrepreneur:

Socerer of Lightening: Nikola Tesla. (2013, November 1st). Retrieved from The Museum of Unnatural History:

Tim Berners-Lee. (2013, October 28th). Retrieved from Internet Hall of Fame: