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In a closer look into social media: facebook, Twitter, Youtube we can understand it has played a significant role in the recent uprisings in the global politics. Meanwhile, politicians are turning to these online channels to transmit news and information to the world and to communicate interactively with their citizens. Mobile devices and social media have also proved invaluable during recent disasters: in terms of capturing and disseminating news, sending and receiving updates, calling help for those in need and sharing eyewitness video footage. Therefore, it is a truth that social media can be used to devastating effect to demolish a company’s reputation, organize riots or defame a celebrity without due cause.

What can we learn from each others’ experiences on use of social media? Are we heading towards new online forms of democracy and governance? Please share your thoughts, suggestions or any questions on the topic.
Thank you.

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Hi Seu! Here are some thoughts from the Philippines:

  • First, I think it's important for people to know that there is still the possibility of selection bias when it comes to social media. What I mean by this is that we should be aware that the opinion of people speaking through social media (YouTube, Twitter, etc) may not necessarily be a representative sample of their country, workplace, organization, etc.  This may only be representative of the people who have access to the internet (i.e. those who can afford to have internet access in their homes, etc).
  • Therefore, for social media to function effectively, it is crucial that we also increase efforts to provide access to underserved areas. 

Additionally, I have a question to ask: Given that with social media, once can possibly receive thousands of tweets or comments in day, how can we sort through the information coming so that we don't miss reading the important questions or comments? In other words, is there an effective way to sort through the overabundance of mail we tend to receive in social media?     

Many thanks for this :)
You have raised a very critical point on the topic and thanks for the question as well.
Thanks for bringing this up Seu, The advent of social media and the recent occurrences in politics and democracy in my opinion will help catalyze change in terms of justice, equitable resource distribution, good governance, accountability and transparency among governments but also the people. It’s a new wave propelled through the technologies you mention but above evidence of people who now have information/knowledge at their figure tips as a result. It’s been said over and again that knowledge is power, perhaps this is an indication that people increasingly get informed through such mediums with a viral effect.
Cleo, thank you for your input... :)
If you have any questions relating to the topic, you are most welcome.
Social media allow people to have free expression forum. And information is going very fast with them and allows people to act more quickly, and anticipate events ...



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