Journalism ethics, spread of fake news among hot topics of Hawana 2023

KUALA LUMPUR: Journalism ethics and efforts to raise public awareness about the spread of fake news on social media are among the focuses of the 2023 National Journalists' Day (Hawana) celebrations.

Bernama chief executive officer Roslan Ariffin said one of the main challenges faced by journalists today is the spread of inauthentic information by social media users who are not trained and bound by the journalism code of ethics.

"Not all social media users are trained (media literate)... some social media influencers are keen to regard themselves as 'journalists' but they are not, because journalists are trained professionals.

"So when these influencers share unverified and inauthentic information, this is major concern as fake news then proliferates," he said this when interviewed for the Hawana 2023: Media Bebas – Tunjang Demokrasi (Free Media – a Pillar of Democracy) programme on Bernama Radio on Tuesday (May 23).

Meanwhile, Malaysian-Indonesian Alliance of Journalists (Iswami) Malaysia president Datuk Mokhtar Hussain said Hawana provided an opportunity for media practitioners in both countries to exchange views and knowledge to advance the profession of journalism.

He said several media leaders from Indonesia were also invited to participate in Hawana 2023 and be panellists at forums to share their experiences on establishing press or media councils in Indonesia, while also strengthens relations among media organisations between both countries.

"Indonesia is also planning and contemplating on how to obtain allocations and funding from tech giants to pay fees to the media because these tech giants also use news content from local media.

"So we hope that they will share their experience in that direction," he said when interviewed in the 'Jendela Fikir: Pena Penulisan Nusantara' programme on Bernama Radio.

Mokhtar said Indonesia is fine-tuning the implementation of this new payment mechanism since the companies concerned should pay some fees for the use of media content as is being implemented in Australia.

The Hawana 2023 celebration will be held in Ipoh, Perak from May 27-29 with the theme 'Free Media, Pillar of Democracy' to re-emphasise the issue of media freedom for journalists in carrying out their duties.

The Hawana 2023 Summit will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim on May 28.

The annual date of May 29 was gazetted as National Journalists' Day in conjunction with the publication of the first newspaper in Malaysia, Utusan Melayu, on May 29, 1939. – Bernama

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