Tag Archives: Freedom of Information

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SOCIAL MEDIA AND DISASTER RECOVERY

Nothing is more beneficial during a modern disaster than public participation. As the saying goes, “two minds are better than one.” When it comes to social media, millions of minds come together to solve problems, seek out answers, and disseminate vital information. As has been evident in recent days, the public has played a key role in both information dissemination and assistance to authorities via social media.

Social Media Aids Disaster Recovery Efforts

A primary source of real-time information, social media has had a transformative effect on modern disaster recovery. It has played a key role in everything from natural disasters to man-made tragedies worldwide. Bystanders and people miles away take to social media during disasters for multiple purposes, from alerting authorities to who and where the injured may be and locating important persons of interest.

Social media also affords the government a nearly unparalleled level of transparency in times of disaster. Real time updates  – like those which we saw during the apprehension of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects – allow the public to not just be witness to but also assist in times of crisis.

Social Media and The Spread of Vital Information

Social media also drives information dissemination at a rate never known before – hotlines to find injured family members are found quickly and easily, and the process of seeking and finding of loved ones has become a crowd-sourced process. Important information can be shared with millions, and by millions, quickly and efficiently.

Social Media and Disaster Relief

Social Media is also useful in the days and months following a disaster. Raising money for victims is no easy feat when done offline. “Crowd-funding” allows users near and far with a simple and fast way to donate to and solicit donations for victims of disasters. As we saw recently in Boston, in many cases hundreds of thousands of dollars have been raised for disaster victims. Social media allowed for triumph in the midst of tragedy, helping victims start new lives with a tremendous support system.

Natural disasters like the tsunami in Japan and Hurricane Sandy reflect the public’s desire to participate and aid victims through social media. Many turn to social media outlets first to learn what is happening, see how they can contribute, and keep on top of developing events.

Social Media Offers A Worldwide Network

Social media is an incredibly useful means for public participation and government transparency.  Never again will there be a time where television is our only source of news during times of need and disaster. From aiding the FBI to aiding victims of national disasters, Twitter, Facebook and other online media serve as vital components of transparency and efficient outlets for managing disaster responses.

FOI can open a window, or at least a hole, in the dark

Finally, the Freedom of Information bill has been approved at the committee level in the House of Representatives, with legislators using the debate about the bill to rant about media’s failures. A “right to reply” provision in the bill was proposed to cure media’s maladies. But alas, that was axed when the FOI bill was approved, with more lawmakers apparently agreeing with media leaders who feared that a right to reply mandated by the law could cripple news organizations.

Edd Aragon http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/photo/28687/foi-can-open-a-window-or-at-least-a-hole-in-the-dark

The Principles of Good Governance

Fair Conduct of Elections, Representation and Participation

  • Local elections are conducted freely and fairly, according to international standards and national legislation, and without any fraud.
  • Citizens are at the centre of public activity and they are involved in clearly defined ways in public life at local level.
  • All men and women can have a voice in decision-making, either directly or through legitimate intermediate bodies that represent their interests. Such broad participation is built on the freedoms of expression, assembly and association.
  • All voices, including those of the less privileged and most vulnerable, are heard and taken into account in decision-making, including over the allocation of resources.
  • There is always an honest attempt to mediate between various legitimate interests and to reach a broad consensus on what is in the best interest of the whole community and on how this can be achieved.
  • Decisions are taken according to the will of the many, while the rights and legitimate interests of the few are respected.

Responsiveness

  • Objectives, rules, structures, and procedures are adapted to the legitimate expectations and needs of citizens.
  • Public services are delivered, and requests and complaints are responded to within a reasonable timeframe.

Efficiency and Effectiveness

  • Results meet the agreed objectives.
  • Best possible use is made of the resources available.
  • Performance management systems make it possible to evaluate and enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of services.
  • Audits are carried out at regular intervals to assess and improve performance.

 Openness and Transparency

  • Decisions are taken and enforced in accordance with rules and regulations.
  • There is public access to all information which is not classified for well-specified reasons as provided for by law (such as the protection of privacy or ensuring the fairness of procurement procedures).
  • Information on decisions, implementation of policies and results is made available to the public in such a way as to enable it to effectively follow and contribute to the work of the local authority.

 Rule of Law

  • The local authorities abide by the law and judicial decisions.
  • Rules and regulations are adopted in accordance with procedures provided for by law and are enforced impartially.

Ethical Conduct

  • The public good is placed before individual interests.
  • There are effective measures to prevent and combat all forms of corruption.
  • Conflicts of interest are declared in a timely manner and persons involved must abstain from taking part in relevant decisions.

 Competence and Capacity

  • The professional skills of those who deliver governance are continuously maintained and strengthened in order to improve their output and impact.
  • Public officials are motivated to continuously improve their performance.
  • Practical methods and procedures are created and used in order to transform skills into capacity and to produce better results.

 Innovation and Openness to Change

  • New and efficient solutions to problems are sought and advantage is taken of modern methods of service provision.
  • There is readiness to pilot and experiment new programmes and to learn from the experience of others.
  • A climate favourable to change is created in the interest of achieving better results.

 Sustainability and Long-term Orientation

  • The needs of future generations are taken into account in current policies.
  • The sustainability of the community is constantly taken into account. Decisions strive to internalise all costs and not to transfer problems and tensions, be they environmental, structural, financial, economic or social, to future generations.
  • There is a broad and long-term perspective on the future of the local community along with a sense of what is needed for such development.
  • There is an understanding of the historical, cultural and social complexities in which this perspective is grounded.

 Sound Financial Management

  • Charges do not exceed the cost of services provided and do not reduce demand excessively, particularly in the case of important public services.
  • Prudence is observed in financial management, including in the contracting and use of loans, in the estimation of resources, revenues and reserves, and in the use of exceptional revenue.
  • Multi-annual budget plans are prepared, with consultation of the public.
  • Risks are properly estimated and managed, including by the publication of consolidated accounts and, in the case of public-private partnerships, by sharing the risks realistically.
  • The local authority takes part in arrangements for inter-municipal solidarity, fair sharing of burdens and benefits and reduction of risks (equalisation systems, inter-municipal co-operation, mutualisation of risks…)

 Human rights, Cultural Diversity and Social Cohesion

  • Within the local authority’s sphere of influence, human rights are respected, protected and implemented, and discrimination on any grounds is combated.
  • Cultural diversity is treated as an asset, and continuous efforts are made to ensure that all have a stake in the local community, identify with it and do not feel excluded.
  • Social cohesion and the integration of disadvantaged areas are promoted.
  • Access to essential services is preserved, in particular for the most disadvantaged sections of the population.

 Accountability

  • All decision-makers, collective and individual, take responsibility for their decisions.
  • Decisions are reported on, explained and can be sanctioned.
  • There are effective remedies against maladministration and against actions of local authorities which infringe civil rights.

Ang Kinatatakutang abuso sa Cybercrime Law, Naganap na

Ang pangamba ng Netizens’ sa Republic Act No. 10175 or the Anti-Cybercrime Act of 2012 ay naganap na.

Bagama’t ang alegasyong kremin o libelo ay ginawa matagal ng panahon, bago paman isabatas ang nasabing batas ito ay may pang-aabusong gianagamit ng may impluwensya, kapangyarihan at may salapi.

Ito ang ginamit laban kay Esperlita Garcia ng Calayan, Gonzaga, Cagayan para aristohin sa kanyang pagpapahayag gamit ang Facebook.

Ang kanyang pagpapahayag sa Facebook ay ginawa nakaraang taon pa. Subalit, siya ay inaresto ngayon lamang Oktobre 16, 2012 kung kailan ang Cybercrime Law na naging kontrobersyal ay pansamantalang wala bisa batay sa TRO na inilabas ng Supreme Court.

Tama at pinatotohanan ng usaping ito ang malaganap na pangamba ng taongbayan na ang Cybercrime Law ay aabusuhin lamang ng mga taong may sapat na salapi at impluwensya sa hukuman at pamahalaan.

Marapat lamang na ang Batas na ito ay tuluyang IPAWALANG BISA ng Korte suprema. ###

Read more from the Source: Cagayan anti-mining leader arrested over Facebook post

FOI pinaglaruan ng mga Politiko

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Well, what do you know? PNoy DID have ‘FOI’ in his SONA

Who says President Aquino left FOI out of his State of the Nation Address? Freedom of Information advocate Vincent Lazatin took a closer look at PNoy’s speech and found the devil in the details. By: Interaksyon

More than 100 lawmakers sign manifesto pushing for FOI bill

Lawyer Nepomuceno Malaluan (second from right), flanked by lawmakers and members of the National Union of Journalists in the Philippines, expresses disapproval over attempts to “dribble the FOI bill to death”. Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

As a candidate in May 2010, President Aquino had promised to enact an FOI law as a strategic pillar of his ‘daang matuwid’ (straight path) administration. His study group has proposed, which in turn he endorsed, an FOI version that includes amendments to address his concerns,” the group said. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon

Onus for FOI passage on public info committee – Gonzales

The bill, which seeks to provide the people with access to information such as government documents upon formal request, had been killed on the last session day of the House in the 14th Congress for lack of a quorum. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

Running out of time, FOI advocates find ‘no room’ in Congress as well

Instead of having it on the week of October 15, as Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. had earlier announced, the hearing has been reset for November 13, a little over a month before Congress goes on break again. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

FOI in ICU, says Tanada

“Representative Ben Evardone placed the FOI in ICU, in life support, gasping for breath,” Deputy Speaker Lorenzo “Erin” Tanada III said, when asked about the new schedule of the hearing. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon

NUJP, KBP, PPI and news groups observe FOI day

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) stands united today with other journalists and media groups as the Philippine media community reiterates its demand for the long-awaited passage of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act.

In a statement released Thursday, the NUJP said, “The government has clearly run out of excuses to delay the passage of the Freedom of Information bill.”

“The only plausible reason why the FOI bill continues to languish in Congress is that the administration does not intend to see it become law,” it added.

NUJP challenged President Benigno Aquino III to show a firm resolve to pass the measure, saying, “But if President Aquino could push the House to end the debates on the Reproductive Health bill although he was certain to court the ire of the Catholic church, we see no reason why he cannot do the same for the FOI bill, which can only earn him the people’s appreciation.

“Mr. Aquino, believe us, there is nothing we desire more than for you to prove us wrong. And we dare you to do so,” NUJP said. Read more from the Source… Interaksyon

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