COM0015 Blog # 4-Out Of The Box

Tweeting is no longer only an earthly phenomenon. Astronauts of all countries are represented on Twitter, Instagram and other sites, allowing users to connect, engage and learn about space on an incredibly personal level — something that is unthinkable without the use of social media.

Astronaut Mike Massimino made history with the first Tweet from space on May 12, 2009.



Eight months later, on January 22, 2010, astronaut TJ Creamer sent the first real-time tweet from space.



Canada’s very own  Astronaut, Colonel Chris Hadfield, has become an internet sensation giving those on Earth a rare glimpse into the everyday lives of those living and working on the International Space Station and the spectacular views they see everyday. Feb. 17, 2013, Chris Hadfiled took to Reddit to answer questions for the first Reddit AMA From Space. His post generated more than 7,500 comments and 45,000 upvotes.

Image by:

Image by:


Feb. 22, 2013 Chris Hadfield along with fellow astronauts Kevin Ford, and Tom Marshburn answered the web’s questions in the first  live  Google Hangouts from space.

 Image by: Slate V Staff

Image by: Slate V Staff


NASA hosted a two-day NASA Social for 50 of its social media followers on April 1 and 2, 2014, at the agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., and the Deep Space Network complex in Goldstone, Calif. The event was  part of a yearlong celebration of the 50th anniversary of NASA’s Deep Space Network (DSN), the world’s largest and most powerful communications system for “talking” to spacecraft.  A NASA Social was an informal meeting of people who used social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Participants at this event were  provided with a unique in-person experience  in which they were encouraged to share with others through their favorite social networks

Image by: NASASocial

Image by: NASASocial


Chris Hadfield belted out David Bowie’s 1969 hit song “Space Oddity” in the first  music video created in space filmed aboard the International Space Station on May 12, 2013.

Most recently, on April 7, 2014 astronaut Steven “Swanny” Swanson shared this snapshot on the official Instagram feed of the International Space Station with the caption: “Back on ISS, life is good”.


The  social media revolution that has taken place in the last few years has caused a new order of interaction between people and it’s incredibly exciting. It’s just proof that what you take for granted can be changed in a day, and instantly when the right set of circumstances comes together. Thanks to social media, outer space feels closer than ever before. I for one can’t wait to see what the future of social media has in store for us.



One thought on “COM0015 Blog # 4-Out Of The Box

  1. I honestly didn’t’ know there were social media posts before Chris Hadfield. Thank you for an informative post.

    When Hadfield was preparing for coming back to earth, I was asked by a reporter what I thought about his social media use in space, and I said something like I loved that he used it as a way to connect and educate with people around the world. His follow-up question was whether or not it was fair to focus so much on one person in space and not on the people like his son who helped him manage his tweets, etc., and the masses of people at the Canadian Space Station. It seemed Hadfield had all the ‘glory’ yet so many people were supporting the mission. My response was that I thought the awareness and engagement were well worth it, and people don’t go into space exploration or work for the Canadian Space Station for fame on social media.

    Reflecting on those reporters’ questions after your post made me wonder about a) the people behind social media campaigns – the thousands of faceless and nameless PR folks and, b) the people behind Neil Armstrong’s spacewalk. No one knows their names, but we know his name and his famous quote.

    I think your examples were excellent examples of how social media can be used in education and to enhance education and engage a younger audience in science and space exploration. It must have been exciting to be an elementary school science teacher at that time.

    I wonder how many young children added ‘being an astronaut’ to their career ideas.

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