Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Current Issues and New Ideas

The latest trends in technology and the growth of social networks may prompt the creation of new services and features.

Many social media sites are adapting their tools for mobile use.

In Africa and Asia mobile phones are used to sustain development, delivering news about market prices in agriculture and fishery.

Geotagging is adding geographical information to an image, a blog post, an SMS messages, a video or other items, creating data maps.

Different groups and developers are using the power of social networks to facilitate collaborative translation and content localization.

Web 3.0 is a term used to talk about some aspects of the Internet that are potentially possible, but not yet feasible from a technical or practical perspective.

Privacy, Intellectual Property and access to Social media

It is important that users of social media be aware of privacy, security and intellectual property issues around the uses of social media and the challenges they present. Working with social media tools and services brings up privacy concerns such as:

  • Who will have access to  information posted? Is this appropriate?
  • What are its potential uses? Is this acceptable?
  • Are we willing to have a permanent record of this data out on the web?

Most commercial social media sites base their business models on advertising revenue. Information we publish on the Internet has the potential to be reproduced and archived many times, even when we take it offline.

Intellectual property refers to the legal rights associated with inventions, artistic expressions and other products of the imagination such as literary works, music, papers etc. The expansion of the Internet has posed many challenges to the way intellectual property has traditionally worked:
  • The public domain refers to materials and content that are not controlled or owned by anyone.

  • Creative Commons Licences allow authors to publish their works under a licence that grants fewer restrictions than traditional copyright. 
  • Open Source is used to talk about programs with licences that give users the freedom to:
    • run the program for any purpose;
    • study and modify the program; and
    • redistribute copies of either the original or modified program.

Not everything on the web is reliable information. Much of the content  on the web has been authored by people who are interested in a topic, but who may not have done a lot of research or fact checking

Social Networking Sites and Communities
Social networking tools allow people to create profiles, find other people with similar interests  and interact. The social networking are based
·        on friendship and personal relationships.
·        professional networks;
·        language specific networks;
·        local networks; and
·        cause-oriented networks.

Different objectives of social networking sites are:
·        an alternative for having a simple web presence
·        useful for promoting issues on a wide network and contacting people not reachable by mailing lists or newsletters
·        to post questions and get collective answers from the public, or from a specific group of people.
·        find job opportunities in a professional network
·        a platform to promote events
·        Share video, audio and images through the easy access software
·        to attract customers and community members to participate and interact around a cause or product
·        Provide new ways for people to connect to one’s  organization
Disclosure of private information through social media is an important issue.

Introduction to Web 2.0 and Social Media
Web 2.0 refers to free or low-cost interactive web-based services that help people share information and collaborate online more easily than with earlier tools. Web 2.0 is a term use to describe easier to use web-based tools for content creation (also known as user generated content), connecting with people (also known as social networking), collaboration and many other forms of people to people interaction. With the use of some of these tools, a remote work group can be coordinated or a channel of communication with other organizations can be created.
There tools help groups with specific features to:
  • ·        plan;
  • ·        do tasks together;
  • ·        share resources;
  • ·        communicate; and
  • ·        create the possibility of joint action or collaboration.

Social networking tools allow creation of groups and connections to other people at an international level. They can also represent challenges in terms of communication and resources.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Navin's Perspective


When I learnt that I was nominated to follow the course on Web 2.0 Tools which is being conducted by the University of Mauritius, I felt concerned. 
I felt concerned because for me it was almost unimaginable to   leave all the work that are pending at my office and go out "on holiday" for a week at the University to follow a course which was even not directly related to my field. Then,  I thought that I would probably bunk some of the lectures and just drop in at my office to handle the "urgent and important issues". 
The training started on Monday 9th July 2012 and after observation of all usual protocols of inauguration by the Minister, speeches by the VIPs and socialisation with the other participants around cups of coffee, the serious things started. 


The participants are all professional from their respective fields and are eager to learn about Web 2.0 tools. The trainers are even more enthusiastic than the trainees and though they humbly admitted that the training materials were not their own and were provided by the CTA, they conduct the lectures and demonstration with professionalism, dedication and tact .

Three days of the training have already lapsed and I can assure you that now, I have no other concern than going till the very end of the course without missing a single bit of it.

I am looking forward to actively use the Web 2.0 tools in my personal life, but I  am also eager to go back at my institution and share whatever I am learning, with my colleagues. The uses to which Web 2.0 tools can be put to, seems to be non-exhaustive. We just need to adopt  the right tool and adapt it to our situation or context. It can but only bring about development, progress and advancement.

My sincere gratitude goes to the trainers, the university staff, the FARC,  and the CTA.

More photos of the training can be accessed at the following link:

More information about the opening Ceremony can be obtained at: