Students of the ICT University, Yaoundé have been admonished to monetise the social media platform known as TikTok while equally showing proof of caution on the use of the application. This advice was given by the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academics at The ICT University, Dr Alain Vilard Isoh during a debate organized by the Huslin’ Club students of the varsity on May 9, 2023 at the school campus.
Seize the opportunity of a global outreach presented by the creation of TiTok to cash in on your creativity and entrepreneurial skills just like many others have done but be mindful of your conduct and digital footprint while at it. These words summarises the conclusion provided by ICTU’s Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Academics and four of his colleagues while serving as President and Members of Jury respectively for a debate on the topic, “TikTok, a Trojan Horse” which was staged in the George M. Mbarika Hall at the University auditorium.
For about half an hour, the panelists comprising entirely of students of the academy had left the audience impressed with sound arguments revealing their mastery of the subject matter and their expertly diagnosis of today’s social, economic and political environment.
The Deputy Vice Chancellor also spoke to ICT-U Broadcast Network after the event and had this to say about the topic of the day and the plans of the institution with regards to it.
“every single student on campus is a member of the platform (Tiktok) but the point is how do we make use of it? Are we making use of it in academics or probably other activities? This debate today has exposed the importance of the usage of TikTok in ways that can improve our welfare. To the student community, think of ways of using its usage in terms of education and community development. To the public in general, TikTok is an opportunity for many possibilities. Through it you can be able to acquire education without going to school, do business without going to the market because it’s a one stop shopping centre for everybody but we just have to be responsible users of the platform”.
Dr Isoh also revealed to us the university’s plans on fostering digital entrepreneurship in their students.
“I am going home with the lesson to teach them on how to monetize the platform”, he said, adding that “currently the university does not have a policy on that. But with this exchange that we have today we are going back to the drawing board to see how we can maximize usage or monetary purpose”.
Created in 2016, the Chinese social media platform has become a major player in that domain with two billion downloads on Google play store alone and an average activity rate of 52 minutes daily. Concerns about the safety of the application began to be raised years later when critics, notably in the US, claimed that the application was a spyware at the service of the government of the People’s Republic of China.
The Huslin’ Club of the ICT University organizes such debates every two weeks to assist students indulge in research as well as sharpen their horizons and blending theory with practical.