Monday, May 27, 2024

DOST taps TikTok to find science advocates, content creators

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) is hosting a competition to find content creators who can spark Filipinos’ interest in science and technology on one of their favorite social media platforms — TikTok.

“One of the apps most loved by Filipinos is TikTok, with almost 36 million users as of early 2022” cited Dr. Enrico Paringit, executive director of the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD), the DOST unit undertaking the initiative.

“This shows the vast potential TikTok has for communication of various topics, including science, if only we learn how to harness the power of social media.”

DOST-PCIEERD in partnership TikTok opened the Pinoy Science STAR Camp competition last Monday, August 22. Through this contest, five TikTokers have the chance to become Science and Technology Advocates for Research (STARs) who will be the main content contributors for the organization’s Pinoy Science TikTok account with 85,000 followers.

Additionally, the five selected content creators can win up to $500 in promotional coupons from TikTok as well as certificates and merchandise from both DOST-PCIEERD and the Chinese social media company.

Mark Ivan Robles, supervising science research specialist of DOST-PCIEERD’s information group, added: “The challenge is to reach Filipinos where they are…We hope that through this partnership [with TikTok] we would be able to share the different projects and programs, technologies we have on science, technology, and innovation.”

“We also see the challenge of translating this research outputs into something that is more accessible to our citizens.”

The first round of this contest is open for one month until September 22. Any person residing in the Philippines who is at least 18 years old and has an active TikTok account is welcome to join.

Aspiring content creators can enter this competition by filming and uploading a TikTok video with the hashtag #PinoyScienceSTARAko. Video entries should contain the creator’s name, an explanation of the science behind one of DOST-PCIEERD’s technologies, and the reasons why the creator would like to be a Pinoy Science STAR.

All entries will be judged based on delivery of scientific knowledge, accuracy of information, creativity, visual appeal, and online impact based on engagement.

After the first round is completed, the top 30 entries will proceed to the semifinalist round where they have the opportunity to participate in a free virtual workshop to sharpen their creator skills before creating a video on one of DOST-PCIEERD’s programs and innovations.

Ten finalists will then progress to the Pinoy Science Camp proper that will be held on October 26 to 28. This final stage will be face-to-face and the contestants will be assigned topics for their final videos.

The camp will also have interactive training sessions where creators can put questions to the invited experts before creating their videos. The top five content creators will be crowned on the camp’s second day.

“We are one with TikTok in taking an active role in supporting the science and technology community and providing and informative and education channel for the Filipino audience. We hope this competition brings out the ingenuity, creativity, and sense of humor of Filipinos using science concepts as content,” said Nina Escorial, DOST-PCIEERD deputy executive director.

“Science communication has always been a challenge to us in the community and we hope we could also learn from you, content creators, so that we may learn to package complex subjects into easily digestible content,” Escorial concluded.


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