Ten Questions for a Digital Native

Matthew Ray
March 5, 2012

This past January we welcomed our youngest intern ever to the ChatterBlast team. Sixteen year-old Sam joined us through a special partnership with Germantown Friends School. Being a true “digital native,” he brought a unique perspective to the office having grown up with the internet and social media as an integral part of his life. His intense internship only lasted a month, but he was so professional and such a hard worker that we would have gladly kept him around longer! We caught up with him to see the presentation he showed his classmates and to get his thoughts on the world of social media through the eyes of a modern teenager.

What was your first social media experience?
In 7th grade I made a Facebook page.

Ok, what’s your favorite: Facebook or Twitter? Why?
Facebook. I will admit that working at ChatterBlast was really my first experience with Twitter. Obviously, FB gives you more options and for me I like to be able to do most of what I want in one place. Twitter isn’t that useful for my purposes at this point in time.

What was your favorite memory from your experience here?
The office warming party was really fun, but I also enjoyed the everyday experience. It’s an exciting atmosphere and everyone was very friendly and every day was fun.

We know you’re quite the athlete. Any plans to live tweet during your games?
My coach is a computer guy, but NOT a social media guy. I’m not sure if he would allow that.

We joked about you dropping out of high school to join ChatterBlast. Since you rejected our offer, what are your future plans?
I have no idea, I’ve just started the college process (I’m visiting schools around Boston next weekend) but I have not thought that far to the future. I would definitely be interested in a summer opportunity if there is one available for me.

What’s on your radar for social media? As part of the next generation, what do you think is the next trend for social media?
I think that social media platforms are eventually going to allow people to easily customize and change their profile. Every time Facebook changes their format people are outraged and eventually someone is going to come out with something that allows you to choose between profile formats, wall formats, messenger formats etc.

Who was your favorite coworker and why?
This is a doozy! Everyone was very welcoming and fun. I liked working with Julie. She taught me everything I needed to know. Everyone was awesome though, this was by far the hardest question.

When you’re not busy going to school, playing sports, and planning for internships and colleges what do you like to do in your free time?
Hulu and Netflix instant play are two of the best things that have happened to me. I also like to hang out with friends, typical teenager stuff. I also love to eat, I like going out to different places around the city. My newest favorite is Grill Fish Café. It is a block from my house and if you like seafood and/or Vietnamese it is awesome.

What was the most valuable thing you learned while working for ChatterBlast?
Along with all types of social media skills I learned what the real world was like. Going to a private school I have tons of resources but and I am somewhat privileged. I learned at Chatterblast how organized and smart and hardworking one has to be. This is definitely something I will remember.

Do you have any words of wisdom to any future ChatterBlast interns?
Don’t be nervous even if it seems busy, it is a team so everyone will work with you and help you out.