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2.1 Concept of Social Media and Types of Social Media
Social media is a form of electronic communication (for example; web sites of social networking and micro-blogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content as videos. While there are different ways to categorize social media, its typology is often based on the main function and purpose of use and accessing social media such as for blogging, micro-blogging, such as twitter, social networking, example facebook, collaborative knowledge production and sharing like Wikipedia, Multimedia sharing, example YouTube and Sharing reviews, (Kyung-sun et al 2014). Social media are interactive platforms where content is created, distributed and shared by individuals on the web. According to Andreas et al (2016) stated that social media is a group of internet based application that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, and that user-generated content. They also noted that social media websites and applications allow users to create and exchange user-generated content where Speople talk, share information, participate and network through technologies such as blogs and social networking sites. Within the last decade, social media has become one of the most powerful sources for news updates, online collaboration, social networking, viral marketing and entertainment network.
According to Abdulasalam and Azizab (2012) social media is the revolutionary arm of the web that provides new ways of creating content, collaborating, interacting and sharing information online in an open social environment. They share variety of technologies that support the social aspects of the internet as a channel for communication, collaboration and interaction which is characterized as Web 2.0 resources that emphasize active participation, connectivity, collaboration, as well as sharing knowledge and ideas among users.
Social media overcomes geographical boundaries and creates communities who share common interest. The users also seek out informational form traditional media, social media platforms, (Rhoades and Hall 2007). Thomas et al 2016 noted that social media is increasingly being used as a medium of sharing information and creating awareness. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Blogs have been used to engage with various audiences, the users generate and shape the content. Social media strengths are complementing traditional media in facilitating the shaping of content.
According to Allah (2016); social media has become key information and networking source for agriculture sector in the recent years. According to (Safko & Brake, 2009) social media is a one stop shop for information whereby the users can read and also contribute to the content. It is convenient to those who need information instantly or do not have easy access to information. Social media is a collection of online technologies that allow users to share information, insights, experiences and opinions with one another. The sharing of information can be in form of text messages, audio, video or multimedia.
Social media has revolutionized communication whereby it has managed to surpass traditional gatekeepers in traditional media that is editors and other decision makers who set the agenda. Social media is an evolutionary stimulus user not organizations or the traditional news media now control the creation and distribution of information (Coombs, 2012).
Italie, (2015) Social media is the most recent form of digital communication and on a global scale, we can love it, we can hate it but it can’t be ignored anymore. Social media is an inseparable part of our lives which we used to connect to the rest of the world today. Accessing news through social media by using mobile devices is also gaining popularity in the world.
Types of Social Media:
According to Amante (2015) stated eight types of social media and networking technologies.
1. Social Networking: These are the most common types of social media, the ones everybody knows about. For example; Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn, allows you to connect with other people on similar interests and background. They consist of a profile, various ways to interact with other users, ability to setup groups. The most popular of it are Facebook and LinkedIn.
2. Professional Networking: This is similar to social networking but with a different focus. Instead of been about connecting with friends, professional networking allows one to connect, meet other professionals, for example LinkedIn: Is the most popular professional network available, it allows one creates a profile focusing on your skill of interest and work experience. Through LinkedIn one can find a job or get introduced to other professionals through common connections. Another one is Founder Dating: Is an entrepreneur’s network which allows you to connect with other entrepreneur or investors to team up on projects.
3. Media Sharing: This service allows you to upload and share various media such as pictures and videos, most services have additional social features such as profiles, commenting, etc. The most popular are YouTube, flickr and sound cloud.
4. Student Networking: Is all about collaborating and interacting with other students, teachers and professors. Student who struggle with his or her work or interest in learning more about the subjects he or she is studying and connect with other students at their grade level. For example; the math forum, and the student room.
5. Web Blogs: This is most and oldest but popular forms of social media. Blogs are often viewed as online journals that order content chronologically, or by date, month, year and category. Users can also maintain “V Logs” or video blogs, featuring shared or homemade videos. This websites include Word Press, Blogger and Tumblr.
6. Academic Networking: This network allows scholars to upload and share research grants. This website includes Academia education and Mendeley.
7. Micro Blogs: These are blogging tools that feature short posts, as opposed to journal-style posts. Users are usually restricted to posting a few lines of text, or uploading individual images and videos. Micro-blogs sites include Twitter, Tumblr. However, social networks such as Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and My space also have their own micro-blogging features, (Andreas 2016).
8. Podcasts: Are audio and video files which allow users to share videos and media players.
2.2 Concept of Agricultural Knowledge Management
Knowledge management is also a process that helps organizations identify, sort, select, organize, systematize, disseminate, and transfer important agricultural information to professionals that is part of the organization memory and that typically reside within the organization. The information technologies make knowledge management available throughout an organization (Smith and Mckeen, 2003). According to Kinney (1998) knowledge management is the process by which an organization creates captures, acquires and uses knowledge to support and performance. Knowledge management a strategies and practices used in an organization to identify, create, represent and adopt insight experiences individual in an organizational processes. Knowledge management focus is on organizational objectives such as improved performance, competition advantage, and innovation, sharing of lessons learned, integration and improvement of the organization (MANAGE 2018).
Knowledge management is a discipline that promotes an integrated approach to identify, capture, evaluate, retrieve, and share all organizational information assets. These assets may include databases, documents, policies, procedures, and previous un-captured expertise and experience in an organizational work (Michael 2012).
Agricultural Knowledge Management helps in creating knowledge repositories, improve knowledge access, sharing, transfer and enhancing the knowledge environment (Patil, 2011). Management of agricultural knowledge takes place at different levels: individual, within communities, within organizations or institutions and networks of them, (Engel, 1990). Various (ICT) social media tools have been deployed for agriculture knowledge management which includes organizational web portals created for specific commodities, section and enterprise and for e-commerce activities (Suleiman, 2012).
Agricultural extension is a knowledge and information transfer service and knowledge management is important to enhance development partner collaboration, improve the use of knowledge in communication for the increase of agricultural productivity Gebremedhin, et al (2006).
Knowledge Management comprises of a range of strategies and practices used in an organization to identify, create, represent, distribute and enable adaption of insights and experiences. These insights and experiences comprise knowledge, either embedded in organizational processes or practice. Knowledge Management efforts typically focus on organizational objectives such as improved performance, competitive advantage, innovation, sharing of lessons learned, integration and continuous improvement of the agricultural organization (Nnadi, et al 2012).
Knowledge management encompasses processes and practices concerned with the creation, acquisition, sharing and use of knowledge, skills and expertise and follow a circular flow and a nonstop process that continuously updates it. Knowledge management deals with the process of capturing, sharing, and use of knowledge and techniques (UNDP, 2012). Agricultural knowledge is created from modern and indigenous sources. The modern knowledge is created through scientific research and therefore it explicit knowledge by universities and research institutes. Agricultural knowledge is created from the different sources of identified captured in various forms before it is stored and disseminated for use. Study tours, and field days are age old tools of knowledge management, (IPMS, 2012).
Knowledge management is a systematic discipline of policies, activities or processes that empower an organization to improve effectively, innovation, and quality of knowledge in organization (Sehai, 2006). According to Islam, (2010) agricultural knowledge management systems consist of organizational sources of knowledge methods of communication and behaviours of that is involved in the agricultural process. Agricultural knowledge management system is expected to capture and share the experience that the knowledge gained through this process can be embedded in the day to day activities of the farmers and their performance. This type of knowledge is what the farmers and the rural communities are interested for, (Hartwich et al, 2007).
2.3 Social Media in Agricultural Knowledge and Information:
According to Metcalfe, (2005) as cited in Nnadi, (2012) noted that knowledge sharing; exchanging and dissemination are elements in a broader theme which is knowledge management. The central purpose of knowledge management is to transform our intellectual assets into the value of information. The basic idea is to strengthen, improve and propel the organization by using the information and knowledge that the organization and its members collectively possess (Milton, 2003). It is true that knowledge in agriculture is where a lot of good practices are being transferred without being well documented in books, papers or extension documents. ICT (social media) is needed to managing agricultural knowledge property.
Scheiber et al (1999) stated that there are information technologies that can be used for knowledge management emphasized their roles in agricultural knowledge management. This technology can be used in different forms or applications and this application includes; Building a national agriculture research information system that will include research outcomes, projects institutions and researchers in every country, and a regional research information system that will work as a portal for all agricultural organizations,
Developing an information system of indigenous agricultural practices that can enable researchers to examine the knowledge and decide on its usefulness for sustainable development,
Storing and retrieving images, videotapes and audiotapes related to different agricultural activities.
Agricultural knowledge is important in creation and sharing of agricultural information to the professionals. It enhances the access and usage of agricultural knowledge, it links agricultural professionals and researcher and increases adoption of good agricultural practices, it enhances effective management and improves the performance agricultural products and produce (Bertolini 2004).
According to Senthil, etal (retervied, 2018) information and communication technology is ruling the world in all works of life, in access to mobile phones and internet facility is also growing rapidly in Nigeria in recent years. The access to internet based on technologies has confined primarily to the urban area. Rural communities have not been able to gain to the same extent to the IT, as a means of agricultural technology transfer to farmers, information technology transfer to farmers; information technology has a limited impact on farmer or agricultural professionals.
WhatsApp as a tool for sharing of agricultural knowledge; whatsapp messenger is a cross platform mobile messaging app and it is a platform to share real-time information which allows users to exchange message, audio, video, photographs. It allows users to create groups, broadcast/send unlimited images, video and audio media messages simultaneously to one person, or to a group. Steps in using whatsapp as a tool for Effective and Efficient sharing of Agricultural Technology to select farmers or Professionals.
1. Scientists and farmers have to be trained in the use of instant messaging application namely whatsapp in creating, sharing, recording and retrieval of agricultural information/technology.
2. Access to be made to necessary hardware and connectivity namely availability of smart mobile devices and internet connectivity to all the stakeholders (farmers/scientists) involved in the project.
3. The knowledge sharing process has to be documented by all the stakeholders.
4. The reusability of sharing knowledge retrieved from this extension model for research and extension may be studied and the constraints faced by the users in using whatsapp may be documented (Kumar and Philip 2016).
In every society, communication is important because it is a means through which humans can interact and makes meaningful relationships. Communication among professionals, groups, friends and associations gives room for people to define their collective interest, identities and common goals (Sokoya et.al 2012).
Professionals across order disciplines therefore establish connections with one another for difference reasons. These reasons include exchange of ideas or information, mentoring and career development. Daudu et,al (2009) reveals some mediums of communication used for connection and networking in agricultural circles in Nigeria. These include folk songs, town crier, farm size, relations and association. Agricultural professionals connect and share information pertaining to their research findings experiences at seminars, workshops and annual conferences.
Boyd and Ellison (2007) stated that agricultural professionals or researchers has caught a glimpse of the tremendous role social media and even mobile phones can play in establishing connections facilitating dissemination of agricultural research findings and exchange of information. Social media has, therefore, become extremely popular because it allows people to connect in the online world to form a group, a forum and a community where ideas and information can be exchanged without any geographical barrier. Social media is useful for everything from keeping in touch with friends up to date, to research collaboration and political activism.
CIARD (2009) Reveal that social media is a shift in how people discover a read and share news, information and content. The use of social media among different professionals is rapidly spreading across the world, these professionals includes Librarians, Lawyers, Doctors, Marketers and even Agricultural Researchers. This is because it has different applications that enable fact connection of networking among them irrespective of their geographic location. Sokoye et al (2012) The role social media played in agricultural research community cannot be overlooked it allows the researchers (professionals) to get feedback from every research work or outcomes at their fingertips, it proffers a fast platform for information dissemination, it broke down physical barriers in reaching out to one another and extending the mileage of exposure from one to one person, one to many persons and many to many persons instant dialogues online, it helps to transfer information to a large audience at the same time. In Nigeria, social media is growing importance among agricultural professionals, peers, and colleague, and order professions and the youth. People source for information directly from their peers in a climate of trust through which suggestion and recommendations are given or made to them in the cause of the research work.