Learning a Foreign Language and Using Social Media

Learning a foreign language and using social media to help streamline conversation

With so many resources available online to connect and share in the language of your choice, where should you begin?

Well, that depends.

Normally the goal of your communication would be Priority One. 

That said, to get the most out of any communication, you will want to have something of interest to share.

From there you only have to communicate it well enough to be understood.

Spanish online and social mediaHowever, if you cannot depend on your foreign language ability to confidently communicate your message, you might want to hone your skills a bit first and then take it from there.

The good news is that there are available resources for both:

  1. To connect with the appropriate audience
  2. Utilize resources that will quickly get you up to speed so that you cannot only push your ideas but also to respond to the inevitable queries that will come back to you.

Before going into the social media outlets you might choose, it would be of benefit to get familiar with the language in which you want to use to communicate.  Your message may come easily enough but if you cannot articulate that message in the language of your audience, then you will have “issues.”

Again, and fortunately, there are many.

It is not necessary to become a Rhodes scholar in linguistics to share either your language experience/aspirations or to make connections on social media.  What you will need is the foundation to draft an introduction of your intent to which others can meaningfully respond to you.  Keep in mind,  without a common language, communication is (to put it mildly) tough.

One of the great things is that social media allows for mistakes.  We all might want to be perfect but that kind of lofty goal is for the ivory tower and not the real world. 

People want to help via social media, its all about the connections, and if they see you making an effort they will be there to assist.  That in turn builds relationships.  And that is the beauty of social media.

Presumably you have some interest in language if you are wanting to use social media on a multi language platform.  That said, you probably have at least a basic beginner level proficiency.  If this is indeed the case, then you are in luck. 

If you want to start from where you currently are now, try typing your missive and translate it using Google Translate.  It will give you a starting point and you can add what you think are required changes.  But beware, software translations are not perfect.  They do a good job for the most part but cannot be completely trusted and most often require additional editing.

If you are not confident assessing the results from the software translation nor do you want to have to depend entirely on translations for every back and forth communication, there is a solution.

Do a search for online resources in the target language that compliment your level of fluency and dedicate some time to enhancing your basic skills in that language.  You will be promoted to a space that will have you yearning for access to others that can relate to you in that language.  The real benefit of this is to refresh your base knowledge so that you will get the most out of the experience you will have with your audience.

Think of this in terms of your intended audience.

Your target is your audience and your message is your goal. 

If you show that you have made an effort, they will undoubtably want to recognize you for said effort and in that you will gain access, albeit preliminarily, in to their world.  That is the start of cross cultural communication.  Persistence and practice will follow.  From there, there are no bounds!

Now, let’s look at some social media outlets at your disposal.

  1. Blogging
  2. Twitter
  3. Instagram
  4. Facebook
  5. Video
  6. SlideShare
  7. LiveMocha
  8. Duolingo

These are but starting points.  There are so many more but start with the big audiences and the road to adventure will open before you.

Every journey starts with the first step.  Take it!

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