Good Governance Within In Social Media

Tell me something’, girl

Are you happy in this modern world?

Or do you need more?

Is there something’ else you’re searching’ for?

Let’s be honest with ourselves and take an evaluation,

  1. When was the last time you checked your social media newsfeed? Is it Seconds, Minutes, Days or Weeks ago?
  2. When was the last time you posted something on social media?
  3. When you are sharing some content, did you check whether it was fake news, a fabrication or some fiction?
  4. How many posts have you had shared before checking the facts? Story behind?

Recently there was a message shared on social media about organ donors waiting for a recipient; this happens all the time. However, it turns out to be a scam. If you were one among those who shared the post, I imagine that you had good intentions when sharing it; I do not doubt it. But did you ever feel the necessity to ask from your source whether it is accurate before sharing? I think we (You and I) are lost in this game of infinite postings, liking, sharing and scrolling. You will be the judge of your real situation. When Bradly Cooper and Lady Gaga sang the song sallow for the move ‘A star is born’, I felt that the song had a more profound meaning. I asked myself whether I am happy in this modern world!

As per the United Nations (UN), “Governance” means the process of decision making and the process by which decisions are implemented or not implemented. The UN has described the good governance with eight characteristics. It is participatory, consensus-oriented, accountable, transparent, responsive, effective and efficient, equitable and inclusive and follows the rule of law. We can apply the same framework when we are using social media channels.

  1. Participation’, which requires all stakeholders, especially those who are most vulnerable, have direct or representative access to the information that is being shared on social media. This manifests as citizens and a strong civil society with the freedom to express and association.
  2. Consensus-Oriented’ means when making a decision, it must show a more in-depth understanding of different social aspects such as cultural, social and historical values. We often see people are posting critics about other religion rather than their religion.
  3. Accountability’, which means that whoever posted or shared whatever the content, that person must be held responsible for the action.
  4. Transparency’ means that all parties have access to information. All the evidence must be traceable and accessible to everyone. If the evidence cannot revel to the general public, whatever the post should not come to the general public.
  5. Responsiveness’ mean how fast we can act if we are to delete, update the content. If some stakeholder of the content wants to update, that must be able to do it in a reasonable timeframe. Not in months or years.
  6. Equity and Inclusiveness’ mean all the stakeholders must be equal; there should not be a division based on caste, religion or ethnicity.
  7. Effectiveness and Efficiency’, one of the most recognized characteristic of the framework; This means that if we are sharing some content, it should serve the purpose, that covers effectiveness. Content should be efficient, we cannot wast people’s time with rubbish. Whatever our action is, it should be sustainable as our future generation depends on our action.
  8. Rule of Law’, which means that the rules and regulations of the constitution, the terms and conditions we agreed, when signing up with social media protect all parties. Further, when we are share or post something, we need to make sure that the post is within the rules of law.

All the social media channels fall into a category called web 3.0, which means that the users generate contents, not the website-owners. When using social media, it is our responsibility to bring good governance. Next time when you post, share or like a post, check whether that post is within the eight characteristics.

PS: This was originally published on IESL Toastmasters 2019/2020 Newsletter by Niraj Appuhamy(CEO/MD IF Solutions)