So, we got U-Report on our head. It has actually been around for some months, and couple of years now.
For the benefits of those that don’t know about U-Report; U-report is a free SMS social monitoring tool for community participation, designed to address issues that the population cares about. SMS polls and alerts are sent out to U-reporters and real-time response information is collected. Results and ideas are shared back with the community. Issues polled include among others health, education, water, sanitation and hygiene, youth unemployment, HIV/AIDS, disease outbreaks; social welfare sectors. Data received can be disaggregated by age, gender, States, LGAs, Wards and settlements in real time. Registration is voluntary with SMS free to the users across all networks.
Based on my own personal experience, U-Report is a platform used to gather data from population of a country based on their location, tribe, areas on various questions on politics, health, hiv/aids, schools, education, infrastructure, social amenities and so on.
As a current serving corps member(NYSC), I understand there is partnership between the nysc body and U-Report to use the scheme to get data, informations from the numerous corpers. Its nice.
But, U-Report can be annoying to many users, you just keep getting all kinds of information asking you to provide answers for free, no benefit is attached, and it keeps disturbing people mobile device. Many people simply disregard the message and delete them.
My Suggestions to U-Report management
If you want the drive and penetration, attach a monetary benefit to every user that joins U-Report and also crediting the phone numbers of users that have acheived a milestone like say 10, 20 questions answered would get like N50, N100 naira airtime to their number. This would probably make the platform more effective and increase the drive.
How to Join U-Report
Simply carry your phone and send “JOIN” to “24453” and then be responding to questions as it brings them. Then U-Report will occasionally send you questions to answer later.