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NIGERIAN YOUTH’S SOCIAL MEDIA PROFILE MANAGEMENT: PRACTICES AND PERPLEXING PROBLEMS

    Dr. Chijioke Odii Affiliation

Abstract

This paper is an attempt to determine the practices that Nigerian youth engage in and the  problems they encounter in managing their social media profiles. It adopts survey research  design, with online questionnaire (powered by Surveycrest) as instrument for data collection.  Research findings have clearly indicated that Nigerian youth have overwhelming presence in the numerous social media platforms that are now ubiquitous in the country. Nigerian youth create  and manage their social media profiles in sundry ways. They engage in practices like creation of  multiple social media profiles, use of false social media identities, inclusion of personal data like  surname, first name, birth date, business/school/residential address, email, telephone numbers  and so on. Among the reasons adduced by the Nigerian youth for maintaining multiple social  media profiles and using false social media identities are security considerations, cover to  commit crimes and engage in illicit chats/activities, enhancing freedom of speech and warding  off unwanted friends. There are some perplexing problems that plaque Nigerian youth’s social  media profile management. Such problems have been identified by the youth to include unsolicited dating, sexual requests by unknown “friends,†unsolicited friends requests, among  others.   This paper recommends, among other things, that Nigerian youth should be adequately sensitized on the proper uses of the social media and there should be a communication/ICT  policy to regulate, but not to censor, the use of the New Media Technologies by Nigeria youth.