The affair, called #AllMediaPH, was a significant gathering of the country’s influential personalities from the institutional media, public relations and communications, and social media.
"Social media has been successful in developing a new generation of readers and reactors. As a media practitioner myself and one who likes to tinker with the vast possibilities of technology and the internet, I have seen the evolution of blogging," Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said in his keynote speech.
"Bloggers are very passionate about making their positions known on certain issues; as a result they are able to inspire a following that can go up as high as 400,000 to four million. Things can be so heated up in the blogosphere or Twitter or FB (Facebook)," the Presidential Communications chief added, pointing out that social media has changed the political discourse.
The highlight of the town hall was the presentation of PCOO's draft Social Media Policy. The PCOO recognizes social media, alongside traditional media, in developing its communications strategy.
The draft Social Media Policy is consistent with Section 24, Article II of the 1987 Constitution, which states that "the State recognizes the vital role of communication and information in nation-building", and pursuant to the provisions of Executive Order No. 4 (s. 2010), which pertains to the pertinent functions of the PCOO in developing necessary guidelines and mechanism for information dissemination and in formulating new media strategies.
Included in the policy are the creation of a Social Media Office, guidelines on the official and personal use of social media by PCOO employees, set rules on content management, and establishment of a framework for social media accreditation.
Resource speakers from various sectors and interest groups presented their views and opinions. They were Arpee Lazaro of Change.org, Al Alegre of Foundation for Media Alternatives, Noemi Lardizabal-Dado of Blog Watch, Rose Beatrix Angeles of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), Carlos Munda of MindaNation, Stella Estremeras of Sun Star Davao, Antonio Contreras from De La Salle University, Juned Sunido from UP College of Science, and Atty. Jose Jesus Disini of Disini & Disini Law Office.
The event was broadcast live on PTV4, DZRB 738 kHz, Facebook @presidentialcom, and YouTube RTVMalacanang.
The PCOO will anounce the results of the forum and the next step it will take.
Meanwhile, an online poll conducted the same day on PCOO's Facebook platform showed overwhelming support for the government to implement a policy that would accredit social media publishers to cover events in Malacañan, with a score of 14,669 "yes" as against 241 "no". ###