What Makes You tweet?
2 July 2013 at 12:33 pm
New Not for Profit research explores young people’s use of social media and perspectives about how community organisations and government agencies should use it to communicate with them.
The Youth Affairs Council of Victoria report called What Makes You Tweet? used a survey, focus groups and case studies to highlights opportunities for social media to be used as an engagement tool with young people that is ‘empowering, purposefully engaging and inclusive’.
This report found that while social media can be a very effective tool in improving young people’s access to opportunities to have a say and participate, perhaps its greatest value as a participatory mechanism is to support ongoing two-way dialogue between services and young people or governments and young people,” researchers Jen Rose and Lisa Morstyn said.
“Young people indicated that often services or organisations use social media simply to get information to young people. While information sharing was flagged as a useful function of social media, young people highlighted the opportunity that exists to engage in respectful, purposeful two way dialogue with them through social media.”
The majority of young people indicated that organisations and services should use social media for reasons including:
• social media is often the first place young people will go to seek information
• it is accessible and easy to use for young people
• it can increase engagement with young people who might face other barriers to connecting with a service/organisation
The report also recommends that youth services:
• Undertake professional development to improve the capacity of staff to engage young people through social media.
• Seek opportunities to hear from young people directly about the use of social media.
• Embed social media engagement into position descriptions and workplans to ensure adequate time and resources are allocated to this task.
• Ensure clear guidelines relating to the use of social media as an engagement tool exist within organisational policies and procedures.
• Consider the functions of the various forms of social media when choosing the best medium to engage young people.
• social media is an effective way to increase young people’s awareness of the programs available through organisations and/or services.
The Youth Affairs Council of Victoria (YACVic) is the peak body representing the youth sector in Victoria and funded by the Office for Youth, Department of Human Services.