MELAKA: Media practitioners should reinvent the ecosystem of their operations to be in line with the Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0) to ensure the journalism career remains relevant, says Tokoh Wartawan Negara (National Eminent Journalist) Tan Sri Johan Jaaffar.
He said this is because the world of journalism is increasingly facing challenges which are hard to predict, especially developments in communication technology and the existence of various social media platforms.
"Previously, we operated differently but now the context and tools are different. In the past, we needed a journalist, soundman, cameraman and the like to report an event, which was an inevitable form of operations for television.
"Previously, before the advent of present-day technologies, I was thinking of a super newsroom which was the centre of everything, meaning (news) processing and the like, but the reality is that now there exists bagpack journalism, where one person can make changes with the applications on a smartphone,” he said.
Johan said this when speaking as a panellist at the Hawan 2020 Forum entitled "Journalism 2030: Peering into the Future Media Landscape” at Hotel Hatten here on Sunday (May 29).
He said if industry players were not prepared to tackle these challenges, the profession of journalism might be viewed as no longer relevant because it has been taken over by the new media.
"The situation has now changed; In the past, it (news) would only appear the next day such as in newspapers but today everything is real-time. So, if we do not equip ourselves with skills and expertise, we will definitely be left behind,” he said.
The forum also featured two other panellists, namely Malaysia Journalism Teachers Society (MJTS) president Datuk Dr Ahmad Murad Merican and Daily Express chief reporter Hayati Dzulkifli.
Meanwhile, Ahmad Murad said journalism should not be seen as playing second fiddle due to the emergence of new technologies which appeared to erode the profession.
He said present-day journalism had lost the aspect of opinions when it could no longer compete with the speed of news.
"Another aspect or dimension which may be more important than news itself is opinion, meaning interpretations and commentaries ... that has disappeared from present-day journalism.
"It has been hijacked by the digital media. We should not be enslaved by the above developments,” he added.
He also suggested that media organisations set up their own facility to analyse news items, especially those which have gone viral on social media which erode the values of journalism.
"It is important to make sense of the story of the day ... the strength to analyse and establish the truth. Every day we are exposed to news but where is the truth?” he said.- Bernama