Lost Space

knikkersWe live in different worlds. Well, this is not to state that mankind has some communication problems in understanding one another’s perspective. It is to address that you and I, each of us, operate in different spaces as part of our lives. An eminent philosopher, Popper (1), posited three worlds in which we live. First, the world of the material things on which we operate and that we manipulate. It consists of tangible objects we can move or alter with our hands, mechanically almost. Then there is the world of beliefs, opinions, and perspectives we can discuss and talk about to interpret and give meaning to what we do. But overarching both is a third world of constructed artifacts, designed models, and created plans that, once produced, govern our doing and talking, which exist more or less independently from us. Think of social media, think of Facebook, for example.  Mankind 2.0 cannot do without third world artefacts. Let alone learn and educate. Therefore, we have Facebook in the classroom as well (2).

A study explored the use of SNS (Social Network Sites) by pupils and found some noteworthy results. (Of course) students communicate about class, and teaching, and assignments through SNS all the time (!). But strikingly may be to some: teachers were not involved in this space; talk remained mainly social oriented, not educational or learning focused. On top of it, the education system did not seem to be equipped to help or relate to ongoing student discussions. Most talks dealt with practical matters and upcoming social events anyway.

Do we live in disparate worlds, i.e, “ ships that pass in the night”; as if matters we deal with in one world are not ‘existent’, relevant in the other worlds? That would really cause a desperate situation in the long run. Third world artefacts call for a merging of designed infrastructure with the personal space of doing (world 1) and talking (world 2). Not integrating SNS, for example, into education systems eventually would lose, according to the study, enormous educational potential. Granted: creating space requires connectivity in order to effectively change our life and way of living.(3) or else it will remain empty.


Janus Aaen & Christian Dalsgaard (2016) Student Facebook groups as a third space: between social life and schoolwork, Learning, Media and Technology, 41:1,160-186,

To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17439884.2015.1111241Source



  1. http://www.libertarian.co.uk/lapubs/philn/philn065.htm
  2. https://elearningindustry.com/facebook-at-schools-professional-teachers-use-facebook



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