the role of Social media in promoting women’s empowerment in Molyko, Buea.
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1.1 BACKGROUND TO STUDY
There is growing amount of literature on the role played by the social media in promoting women’s empowerment.
The Cambridge Advanced learner’s dictionary defines social media as websites and computer programs that allow people to communicate and share information on internet through the use of computers.
It is a computer based technology that facilitates the sharing of ideas, thoughts, and information through building of virtual networks.
Media gives us the latest information about any issue or event. Steve Adubato, (2017 ) States that, social media has become an effective and an important communication tool that facilitates communication and stay connected with key stakeholders and customers.
However the ability to coordinate the message sent by your organization and following up on feedback you receive can be so challenging.
There also exist a great challenge in monitoring and measuring the success of your communication.
Globally, the social media has been promoting women’s empowerment after the third UN women’s conference in Nairobi which was the first international conference that linked sustaining development and empowering women’s involvement as well as equality in gender.
The whole gender equity notion was derived from the injustice and suffering of women across the world.
The social media through its platforms have given women a voice and an immediate way of communicating and guaranteeing their agenda through Face book, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram, it provides ready communities for women who have previously felt marginalized and powerless for instance Alisa Milano [an American producer, activist and west Hollywood musician] asked the women of twitter to write MeToo’ if they had been sexually harassed or assaulted.
Within days, tens of thousands of women had responded. Within weeks, one of the most powerful men on the planet was toppled and industries from entertainment to politics were given a shake-up.
One lone voice became a shared voice, which became a rally cry, Times up’ called Oprah from her Golden Globes podium and across the world, there was a powerful feeling she could be right.
Technological revolution has transformed the world but, media is stills not really sure how, platforms have been provided over the social media such that, messages can run easily through blogs, websites, snap shots.
A study reveals that, the social media kills the spirit or voices of women through online abuse especially to female journalist and women in power (Nargiz de Bear 2018).
According to studies from Marys the Meeker, Africans go online predominantly with the use of phone’s, they spend much of their time with friends sending and receiving cute pictures, talking with family members and friends on Twitter, Face book, WhatsApp, YouTube and so on.
Sending and reading email, reading news postings articles, projects or researching on important information, Has become less important for them.
Also its high cost and poor nature of network connection limits their ability to have access to the Internet. there are numerous challenges online on the use of social media by women, women have realize the role the social media play in empowering them.
For example, Arjama an 18 year old says she has an account on Instagram which she is an activist through art work and has helped others empower themselves.
kavya also expresses that throughout her life she has been ashamed of herself and conform the society expectations of behaving like a girl.
She says she was fired when she began her career for not giving into sexual favors, so she used these forum to communicate about it over the social media and now she has a company of her own that focus on message of body positivity. So now she is a leader and change maker.
Many young women are doing their best to learn from their educational talks and to equally empower themselves (Sasha, 2018)
Communication for development helps to change individual behavior and social norms.
Social media is an Easy two way communication and process of sharing ideas and knowledge, using communication tools approaches that empower people and communities to improve the lives of the most vulnerable.
It’s important for women to come together, bond, create and support networks that are aimed at empowering women.
Be it online or offline, standing up for ourselves is important because we as human beings, deserve justice and for our voices to be head (HERSTOYR, 2019)
The social media as a tool of communication takes a variety of tech-enabling activities such as photo sharing, blogging, social gambling, social networks, video sharing, business networks, reviews and is instrumental in changing African customs and religion that are against women empowerment since it has the power to reach out a large audience within and across countries (HERSTORY 2019)
Social media users are expanding fast emerging markets such as, Asia-pacific, Middle East and Africa.
But can social media include women’s voices in decision making process and promote equality? This is because stereotypes of women within the media industry still very much exist.
According to the UN, empowering women in spheres of economic, education, human rights and politics has significant advantages such as, faster economic growth and increase women’s participation in the job market, remove barriers that hinder women from advancing in their career and also increase women’s voices in decision making especially when dealing with developmental issues.
When more women enter the labor force, and earn as much as men, there is equality in the job market hence, fostering the rate of economic development according to statistics from the World Bank. (London feminist, 2017)
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Women’s empowerment is very much necessary in the nation’s growth be it economically, politically or socially.
Empowerment which became popular since the 1980’s and sees a means of increasing and improving the social, economic and political and legal rights to women and makes them confident enough to claim their rights.
It has been observed that women are being suppressed and given less important roles and functions in almost every aspect of life.
This has been to a great extent that, women’s movements especially online sites have taken up the task to empower women and help them take meaningful decisions and responsibilities in participating in nation building.
Given that, the social media plays an important role promoting women’s empowerment, the researcher’s concern here is looking at the role of social media in promoting women’s empowerment in Molyko, Buea
What is the role of social media in promoting women’s empowerment in Molyko, Buea?
- How do women access information over social media in Molyko, Buea?
- What are the various social media sites used by women in Molyko, Buea?
- What role does the social media play in promoting women’s empowerment in Molyko,Buea?
- What are the challenges faced by women using social media Molyko,Buea?
1.2 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
- MAIN OBJECTIVE
To determine the role of social media in promoting women’s empowerment in Molyko, Buea
- SPECIFIC OBJECTIVE
The following specific objectives will be investigated in the study
- To examine women’s access to information over social media in Molyko Buea.
- To determine the various social media sites used by women Molyko, Buea
- To determine the role of social media in promoting women’s empowerment in Molyko, Buea
- To examine the challenges women face in using social media in Molyko, Buea.
- What measures can be put in place to make sure that woman and girls use the social media appropriately.
Further reading: The role of social media in women’s empowerment