According to an Ipsos survey, an overwhelming 35 percent of respondents said they ignore negative situations such as bullying and accidents in real life. But when it comes to the online, 42 percent watch these events unfold – rather than ignoring them. and a mere 16 percent would even go a step further by sharing these posts after viewing them.
But, what is really worrying is that while 51 percent would contact the authorities and 45 percent would offer help when they witnessed such events in real life, only 16 percent would do so online by means of reporting or flagging a post. Further, almost half (45 percent) of those who have experienced a negative situation in the last year, said that someone posted about the situation online.
“And this was a statistic that we could not ignore,” says Abdulwahed Juma, executive vice president of brand and corporate communications, du.
It is also why du is continuing its “#PostWisely” campaign through the second installment, which is themed, “If it were your pain, would you share it?” The new campaign comprises four compelling videos that address the negative impact of posting people’s misfortunes online and question the motives of the people behind the camera lens. The videos illustrate and highlight the harmful and unethical nature of sharing pictures and videos of negative situations such as accidents, bullying, pranks, and other ill-fated incidents on social media that have become increasingly prevalent recently – 57 percent to be precise, according to Ipsos.
“We are in an era where our digital and real lives are not so clearly demarcated. While a lot prominence is given to having a digital footprint and engaging with audiences online, it is also pertinent that we maintain a moral compass in practicing discretion,” says Osman Sultan, CEO, du.
“Social media affects us all, both positively and negatively, and we believe it is our responsibility to help protect UAE residents from threats posed by misusing it. The survey revealed some troubling habits of social media users in the UAE, and we hope that by creating a campaign from our findings, we can provide a platform for purposeful conversations around ethical online behavior,” adds Juma.
In addition to the four films, the campaign will make use of the hashtag #PostWisely to keep the conversation going on social media, while also conducting awareness initiatives such as roadshows at UAE universities starting with the American University of Sharjah.