Communication Network among Small-Scale Miners

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This study explored small-scale mining narratives on environmental messages and information disseminated and received in the mining community of Bayugan 3, Rosario, Philippines. These narratives were products of a communication flow contextualized and manifested in the life world of small-scale miners. The study investigated the communication messages, resources, and media/channels and their usage in information exchange for environmental activities and responsible mining updates sourced from government agencies, cominers, and local government unit (LGU) officials. A qualitative approach is employed, using a cybernetic tradition of communication to view the impact of a social network of information on small-scale miners. Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) were also utilized in data collection. The findings revealed that small-scale miners received limited mining information on environmental protection and responsible mining updates, distrusted government regulators, experienced top-to-bottom communication, and were seldom visited by experts and government regulators from the LGUs. They preferred their peer system and cellphone for information dissemination. They acknowledged that they were keen to participate in environmental activities and health mining measures. Better and more sustainable mining strategies are suggested in order to strengthen ties between small-scale miners and regulatory agencies in the implementation of environmental education and policies for any responsible small-scale mining industry.