Social media policies needed in schools and workplaces
Escalante City, Negros Occidental – A visit to this northern city of Negros Occidental is always pleasurable because it offers a welcome respite from the hustle and bustle of metropolitan Cebu.
The homey atmosphere of a hostel owned by Escalante Public School Teachers and Employees Cooperative EPSTEMPCO Visayas lent itself to a somewhat bucolic setting for a Social Media Literacy program organized by EPSTEMPCO and a start-up coop, Creative Technology Service Cooperative.
The complimentary copy of the Manila Bulletin in the EPSTEMPCO hostel caught my attention because it had the Facebook marquee on the front page.
Set in a black background that seemed to convey an ominous sense, the picture was paired with the headline news, “Facebook admits privacy settings “bug” affecting 14 million users.”
The front page story said a software glitch changed the setting of some 14 million users of the biggest social media network, “potentially making some posts public even if they were intended to be private.”
Data protection and data privacy are big issues on the digital superhighway and naturally flowed in conversation with fellow mentors of the SocMed literacy program, namely Atty. Ian Vincent Manticajon of the University of the Philippines Cebu and Rachelle Nessia of the Public Information Agency 7.
Facebook has been hounded by privacy blunders that netizens should be wary of what they post on the social networking site. In light of this, Atty. Manticajon commented that all FB posts are public even if they’re set in private.
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About five to eight years ago, happenings in the social networking site hardly ever make it on mainstream media but as we all know developments in social media have been fast and furious. It has not only overtaken traditional media in ways that hurt it most, the bottom line, but also threatens its survival.
According to industry reports, Facebook and Google which owns Amazon have cornered as much “as 65% of the total advertisement spent or 90% of the industry annual growth rate in recent years”.
This, even as mainstream news outlets struggle to compete with citizen journalists and bloggers.
There are 60 million Facebook users in the Philippines and Filipinos spend the most hours on the social networking site, at 4 hours and 17 minutes daily, according to the HootSuite Social Management Platform.
That gives one an idea why mainstream media’s ad revenues have been steadily declining in recent years.
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I’m writing this piece as Day 2 of the social media literacy program comes to a close.
The motivational and capacity building program attracted 30 participants composed of co-op officers, teachers and students from the Northern Negros State College of Science and Technology in Sagay City.
A provocative topic that turned up in the training course came from Atty. Ian Vincent Manticajon.
His talk on integrating social media in education was so absorbing that it moved a teacher to propose that SocMed be included in school curricula.
Later, Atty. Ian advocated that schools and business organizations formulate appropriate policies to guide students and employees in the proper and responsible use of social media platforms, whether it’s Facebook, Tweeter, Instagram, etc.
Dr. Romulo Sisno, NONESCOST President who sits as chairman of the board of EPSTEMPCO and another coop based in the state college welcomed the idea.
Social media has clearly upended traditional institutions that human organizations will have to adapt to these changes or they will perish.
(To be continued)
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