Facebook has joined the very many online sites aimed at promoting petitions. The social media giant will be rolling out a “Community Actions” feature effective 21st January starting with the United States of America.
Users will be able to post and sign petitions via news feeds. Users have an option to click “support” and also share related personal testimonies and videos.
The users will also be able to tag government agencies who will be notified and can respond. The government agencies can also launch their own Community Actions.
Facebook in a statement through its Spokesperson said,
“Building informed and civically engaged communities is at the core of Facebook’s mission. Every day, people come together on Facebook to advocate for causes they care about, including by contacting their elected officials, launching a fundraiser, or starting a group. Through these and other tools, we have seen people marshal support for and get results on issues that matter to them. Community Action is another way for people to advocate for changes in their communities and partner with elected officials and government agencies on solutions.”
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It remains to be seen how the Community Actions Feature will be Revieved in Africa and Uganda most precisely. It is still a rare thing to find government agencies actively engaging with the citizens online.
The petitions feature is a step in the right direction as it will increase interaction between government and its citizens. It will also simplify online causes like #TuveKuKaveera and #StayInYourLane among others.
We would like to hear your opinions. Is the Community Actions feature a step in the right direction? How do you think it must be handled to maximise the outcome of online petitions? Share your views in the comments section below.