The time a newspaper described my graduate degree as a “Master’s in MySpace”

As some who know me might already know, I’m one of the first people in the world with a Master’s in Social Computing. I just came across an old interview from that time.

Halai said he’s interested in learning how people use the Internet to express themselves and interact in part because of the differences he sees between communities in India and the United States. Halai was raised in India where community is based largely on family and religious beliefs, he said.

American society is becoming increasingly centered on online communities, he said. Halai said social networking sites are important to understand because an increase in online communication will lead to a decrease in personal interaction. He said that’s not necessarily a bad thing, though.

Halai is a first-year graduate student who plans to join the School of Information’s social computing program. For Halai, Facebook isn’t just a way to keep in touch with friends. It’s also his homework.

With social networking websites like Facebook, and growing in popularity, the School of Information has created a master’s program in social computing for students to study the social impact and technological design of the sites.

The University is one of the first colleges in the country to create such a program.

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