Appendix 1 – what one should know while using Web 2.0 tools

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You might not own your content

Every Web2.0 service has its own Terms Of Service and these terms tend to change over time. Be aware that in case of some tools the terms state that you don't legally own your data. The service providers cover themselves legally in cases if your content is shared beyond your intention of sharing it, particularly because it is often impossible to 'delete' content once it starts circulating through social networking sphere.

While this legal provision might not affect you at all when using these services for purposes of your research, you should be aware of it. Check the terms of service of every tool you use quite carefully, so you know under what legal conditions you are publishing (sharing) your research data and outputs.

Community censorship

Since most social networking and community media tools work on the principle of users sharing their own content (text, videos, links to content...) most of these tools have built-in mechanisms for community control over this content being 'safe'. These are the report harmful/abusive content links you probably saw in Facebook, YouTube and most other services. Given the volume of information shared over these services there is usually no real arbiter reviewing properly these abuse reports and a content is considered harmful if a large enough number of users reports it as such. In these cases, the content is usually simply removed and/or given user's account suspended. There are known cases when this 'community censorship' mechanisms have been abused. Pressure groups generated sufficient number of 'abuse reports' that they were able to relatively easily take down legitimate content shared over social networking tools.

Keep this in mind when your report findings deal with issues that might be sensitive or which might make uncomfortable certain organised groups. In such cases, make sure your content is disseminated through several different tools and channels.


Table of Contents of the iGuide

1. Introduction

2. Basic Communication Strategy and use of Web 2.0 Tools for Evidence Based Policy

3. Section 1: Political Context

4. Section 2: Evidence

5. Section 3: Links

This iGuide is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 license.

Impact 2.0 is a project of the Fundación Comunica with funding provided by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), IDRC.jpg Ottawa, Canada.

Consult the User's Guide for information on using the wiki software.