THE ROLE OF FACEBOOK IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF CIVIC ENGAGEMENT IN MOROCCO
Keywords:engagement, civic engagement, online engagement, slacktivism, social media
The study investigates the factors that inspire Moroccans to engage in both online and offline civic efforts. The inquiry targeted demographics, frequency of Facebook use, the influence of online engagement on participation in real life and the main motivations behind Moroccan civic engagement online. Both qualitative and quantitative research methods were adopted to collect and analyze both primary and secondary data. An online survey was administered to (n=277) participants through Facebook targeting the general public of Moroccan Facebook users to collect primary data. Secondary data was collected via semi-structured interviews with (n=3) social activists to provide a comprehensive view of both normal citizens and people who can be considered specialists in the field. The findings revealed the extent to which Moroccans’ usage of Facebook influences their engagement both online and offline, indicating that social media use for civic purposes is significantly related to offline participation. Despite that, higher levels of the so-called “slacktivism” behaviors dominate Moroccans’ civic activities performed on Facebook. Findings in general support the fact that Facebook plays a significant role in the development of civic engagement in Morocco.
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