‘Use MIB values when online’

National 2 minutes, 56 seconds


ADVANCEMENTS in technology have led to some individuals feeling the need to be “connected” but this has led to a lack of interaction between family members.

This was said by Permanent Secretary (Media and Cabinet) at the Prime Minister’s Office Hj Mohd Rozan Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Yunos at the Social Media Forum 2015 held at the AITI building in Anggerek Desa yesterday.

The forum was an initiative by the Content Advisory Council and organised by the Authority for Info-communications Technology Industry of Brunei Darussalam (AITI).

It was held to promote the positive use of social media and educate users about online etiquette.

He highlighted that the “uncontrolled” use of such technology could socially impact the interaction between family members, friends and colleagues.

“Nowadays in many restaurants we walk into, we see many people sitting on the same table yet not communicating to each other but are instead communicating with someone else via their smart phones,” he said.

“We are beginning to lose the art of communication. Our social skills are slowly becoming limited.”

He explained that the Internet has given birth to a new concept called social media which refers to avenues on the Internet where members of the public can generate content.

But for every useful activity generated, the “irresponsible users” have also generated harmful activities, such as spreading false news and preying on others.

“As users of this technology, we should always be alert and aware of content... that are not suitable for our society,” he said.

He gave an example of cyber crimes where in March 2014, Royal Brunei Police Force (RBPF) statistics showed that approximately 60 per cent of abuse and rape case victims knew their attackers through online dating and that 82 per cent of these victims were children under 16.

He added that the excessive use of smart devices might even cause car accidents.

“For example in the United States, the American National Safety Council reported that mobile phone use while driving led to 1.6 million crashes each year.”

“Nearly 330,000 injuries occur each year from accidents caused by texting while driving and one out of every four car accidents in the US is caused by texting and driving. We really have to tackle this issue seriously. This is a statistic that we need to be aware,” he said.

The permanent secretary stressed that these factors are “very worrying” and that Brunei’s younger generation need to be guided by Malay Muslim Monarchy (MIB) values when online, so the good side of social media is utilised.

He said that the pros of social media were that it would allow us to reconnect, to promote one’s business and shape the way information is transmitted to the public.

“Facebook exploded when people found out that they can reconnect long lost relatives and friends, while LinkedIn allows networking at a professional level,” he said.

“Social media is also used for marketing, as a bandwagon to promote products and services while providing trending topics and news before they are (surface) in the mainstream media.

“As smart phones become even more ubiquitous and people find ways to access news sources, we will only continue to see social media directing world events, building awareness and breaking news. Everyone can now be a reporter.”

Hj Mohd Rozan thus reminded the audience at the forum that tackling social media was a shared responsibility.

He hoped the social media forum would promote the effective use of social media to enhance our values and aspirations to be responsible netizens.

The Brunei Times