Youth Perceptions, Use and Effects of Social Media on Peace and Conflicts in Tanzania

  • David J. Manyerere


The article focused on examining how youth perception and use of social media  (SM) influences peace and conflicts among Tanzanians, using the Dar es Salaam  region as a case study. A qualitative approach was used to collect and analyse data.  A purposive sampling technique was used to select respondents, whereby youth,  local government officers and community residents were interviewed. The findings  revealed that SM has both advantages and disadvantages in promoting peace and  activating conflicts, depending on users’ perceptions and interests. SM facilitates  conflicts due to the Social Media Networks (SMNs) ability to spread fake news  quickly, unfounded claims, and rumours. These promote conflicts between political  opponents as well as causing mistrust among citizens and their leaders. Some  artists, especially comedians, instigate conflicts in society by editing political and  religious leaders’ messages. On the other hand, it was revealed that SM promotes  peace due to quicker transfer of relevant information that nurtures positive unit  values, solidarity, respect and love among the group, society members, and citizens.  These values promote good deeds, such as worshipping God, working and living  together amicably. However, the study found out that lack of appropriate education  on SM’s use and importance among many youths on youth development seems  to have hindered SM use in peace promotion. The study calls for strengthening  stakeholders’ initiative to educate and mobilise improved use of SM among youth  to sustain peace and security, which is a pre-condition for their self-development  and prosperity of their country.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 0855-6768