#Ethics in 140 Characters: The Use of Twitter to Talk About Doing the Right Thing – A #SocialMedia Lab Guest Talk

LecturePlease join us at the Ryerson Social Media Lab’s seminar on March 27 at 2:15 for a guest talk by Dr. Chris MacDonald and Dr. Chris Gibbs (Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University) on “The Use of Twitter to Talk About Doing the Right Thing.” This talk is part of the Social Media Lab Guest Talk Series. They are smaller informal affairs designed to promote discussion by attendees. If you are doing research in social media, we hope you can join us for a lively discussion. Students are welcome. See details below.

Title: The Use of Twitter to Talk About Doing the Right Thing.

Date: Friday, March 27, at 2:15-3:30 (EDT)

Location: Ryerson University, Ted Rogers School of Management
55 Dundas St. West, Toronto, ON Canada,
Room TRS 1-010 (7th floor, across from the elevators),

Abstract: Twitter is arguably the most significant new communications medium of the last decade. In addition to its pop culture, entertainment, and political uses, Twitter has taken on a prominent role in the realm of corporate communications, and in online discussions about corporate ethics. Many corporations (like @Walmart and @CocaColaCo and @Halliburton) use their twitter accounts to brag about the good they are doing in their communities. Even more often, Twitter has been the venue for complaints and accusations launched against corporations, whether by journalists, by activists, by NGOs, or by irate consumers. Twitter has become, in other words, the venue for a burgeoning conversation about businesses’ attempts, and failures, at doing the right thing. But who are the participants? What are they talking about? What vocabulary are they using? In this presentation, we report the results of an exploratory study that subjected 127,000 ethics-related tweets to quantitative and qualitative analysis in an attempt to begin to answer such questions.


MacDonaldChris MacDonald, Ph.D., is Director of the Ted Rogers Leadership Centre and Founding Director of the Jim Pattison Ethical Leadership Education and Research program, at Ryerson University’s Ted Rogers School of Management. He is also a Nonresident Senior Scholar at Duke University’s Kenan Institute for Ethics. He is the author of more than 30 peer-reviewed publications, and is author of a best-selling textbook on critical thinking. MacDonald is also author of the highly-regarded Business Ethics blog (businessethicsblog.com). He has several times been named as one of the “100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics,” by Ethisphere Magazine, in addition to being named as one of the “Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behaviour” By Trust Across America in 2011, 2012, and 2013.

Chris GibbsDr. Chris Gibbs has over 20 years of diverse sports, entertainment, travel and hospitality industry work experience prior to teaching at university. He uses this diverse experience to guide his teaching and research. His recent research looks at the use of mobile ready platforms (mobile websites, responsive website design and mobile applications) across the spectrum of hotels, destination marketing organizations and airports. Prior research has investigated the use of twitter for sports media relations, fan engagement, ethics communications and social media for hotel human resources. Beyond his academic research he has done research for a diverse group of organizations; Royal Bank, Tourism Toronto, Fairmont Hotels and Resorts and Miles Destination Marketing.

For his teaching and contribution to the university, Chris has received recognition.  In 2015 he was awarded the Dean’s Teaching Award at the Ted Rogers School of Management and in 2013 he was awarded the Student Experience Award by the students of the Ted Rogers School of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

Before joining Ryerson, Chris spent eight years at Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment in business operation and venue management roles. He has also held leadership positions in the travel industry with Travel CUTS, live theatre marketing with Livent Inc. and attraction marketing with Playdium Entertainment. Throughout his career, Chris always finds “white space” where he creates new business opportunities for companies to reach new markets with new revenue opportunities. He has built a reputation as an accomplished leader with an engaging presentation style.