eSML: Share Mo Lang Voters’ Forum An Online Forum for Media and Information Literate Voters
April 9, 2022
Media and information literacy (MIL) advocates Asian Institute of Journalism and Communication (AIJC), Break the Fake Movement, Foundation for Media Alternatives (FMA), Out of the Box Media Literacy Initiative (OOTB), and Yabong Philippines continue the partnership they started in 2021, when they engaged young Filipino voters in the online forum, “Botante na ako! Now what?”, during the 2021 Global Media and Information Literacy (MIL) Week.
The October 2021 forum brought together young MIL advocates to discuss how to practice informed voting in the May 2022 elections. It generated discussions on how to gather and verify information, raise awareness about manipulation of media narratives, and identify the issues young Filipino voters care about.
In the months leading up to the elections, the same alliance of MIL advocate organizations, together with Pinas Forward and eboto.ph, are conducting a new online event that will provide a safe space for democratic discourse among young voters, while promoting critical thinking and fact-checking: “SML: Share Mo Lang Voters’ Forum.”
The objectives of the SML Voters’ Forum align with the outcomes of the Philippine Youth Development Plan (PYDP), such as the empowerment of youth to “exercise their right of suffrage responsibly,” as well as the objectives of the Media and Information Literacy (MIL) Framework in Youth Civic Engagement in the Philippines, developed by Filipino MIL advocates and youth organizations in 2021.
While different organizations continue to implement webinars/workshops and forums on fact-checking and addressing mis-and disinformation, and candidates are being engaged in media/social media interviews as well as debates, there appears to be a gap in terms of creating venues for democratic discussions on the issues young Filipinos are most concerned about and where the candidates stand on these issues.
The SML: Share Mo Lang Voters’ Forum goes beyond the recommended online action in the MIL Framework in Youth Civic Engagement (.e., social media campaign on voter registration and voter education) by implementing a more interactive activity that promotes active listening as well as understanding of diverse perspectives. The forum will foster meaningful, respectful, and civil discourse among voters, and encourage citizens to step out of echo chambers in order to understand other people’s experiences and points of view.
At the end of the forum, participants are expected to recognize the value of active listening and civil discourse; deepen their understanding of fact-checking and critical thinking (including managing one’s biases); and acknowledge commonalities and differences among fellow citizens who may not share the same perspectives.
The following are the objectives of the online forum:
- Provide a space for discussion of different perspectives as a way of breaking echo chambers;
- Promote active listening and engagement in civil discourse;
- Identify issues young Filipino voters care about;
- Encourage discussion and analysis of presidential candidates’ stand on issues; and
- Discuss practical critical thinking and fact-checking techniques in analyzing issues and candidates’ statements.
Share mo lang voters' forum
call for speakers!
April 9, 2022
- 18 to 35 years old
- Registered voter who is committed to voting in the May 9 elections
- Vocal and actively supports their presidential candidate of choice
- Articulate and knowledgeable of key issues in the 2022 elections
- Can commit to keeping a safe and respectful environment by avoiding name-calling and insults
- Consents to the recording and live streaming of the event (Note: Use of pseudonym during the event is encouraged)
NOTE: Applicants will be screened based on their candidate preference, gender, regional location, and type of career and occupation. Diverse representation is a priority.
- The three-hour program will begin with a brief overview of the forum and its objectives, the eboto.ph website, and the introduction of speakers.
- Ten to twelve (10-12) speakers will compose the forum–ten (10) of which are supporters of the presidential candidate of their choice while two (2) are “undecided” voters. The speakers will not be introduced as representatives of neither their chosen candidates nor their organizational affiliations. In addition, speakers will be given the option to use an alias; they will not be required to turn on their camera during the discussion.
- Five to six issues will be discussed throughout the program. Fifteen (15) minutes will be allocated for each round. The facilitators will provide context about each issue at the start of each round. The issues will be selected primarily from those discussed in the televised presidential debates.
- For each issue, clips from presidential debates and additional research will be presented to show the stand of the presidential candidates. These may be referred to as “resibo no. 1,” “resibo no. 2,” and so on.
- Per round, speakers will be given time to discuss their perspectives on the issue, while audience comments will be gathered by facilitators from the Facebook livestream and brought into the discussion. There will be a time limit for each speaker. In some parts of the program, speakers will be invited to answer through a show of hands or a poll.
- A fact-checker and/or expert on each issue will come in before or after each round. Alternatively, a slide may be flashed on screen for the fact-checking segment while the facilitators discuss the key points.
- There will be two fact-checking games/icebreakers, with five questions per game/icebreaker, in between the rounds. Prizes will be given to the winning audience members.