HAS INTERNET, SOCIAL MEDIA BEEN ABUSED IN NIGERIA: AN ONGOING DEBATE

Information communication  technologies have been tied to recent political discussions, in recent past. Political uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt was widely publicized using internet communications.



The political uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt in 2011 further intensified discussions on
the political potential of internet communication which facilitated a more open information exchange, the formation of alternative political opinions, and the mobilization of social actors previously excluded from political participation. 

Still in Egypt protesters were said to have used social media such as twitter, facebook to organize their vast presence in Cairo’s central Tahrir Square. In Nigeria the scenario has not been different as social media has become a tool in entrenching and consolidating democratization. The introduction of social media as a media tool in the 2011 election proved invaluable, no wonder the war was fought and won on social media in the 2015 elections. 

Never has it been heard nor done that government officials, presidential aspirants and other candidates aspiring into various political offices had or partook in Social media organized event prior to the 2015 elections era.


As a consequence, the new medium has increasingly attracted the interest of civil society activists, policy makers, and development organisations.
The perception of the internet cum social media as a means for democratization and development is bound to shape future political expectations and decisions; but right now the begging question is Are we or better still, have we abused the use of Social media or the Nigerian factor has caught up with social media in Africa’s most populous nation?”.

The legislative framework guarantees Nigeria citizen’s freedom of expression although judicious restrictions are enforced at instances such as to protect security of the country, morality etc. nonetheless, most Nigerians have choosen to use social media as a channel to promote religious extremism, radicalism, violence etc

Social media and the internet usage statistics has shown steady patronage and engagement. Permit me to say that everyone; suddenly seem to be an authority in information dissemination, with no caution or evaluation of the potency of what such information may cause. It is no more news of the charades of online media prosecution and persecutions ongoing in Nigeria, and as usual the political class is gradually hijacking the system to perpetuate their antics.

So I Submit by quoting the 4 way test of Rotarians
Of the things we think, say or do
1.     Is it the TRUTH?
2.     Is it FAIR to all concerned?
3.     Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
4.     Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?
Next time you want to make a post on facebook, twitter, blog etc think the 4 way test.

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