Sarawak Premier urges media to develop code of ethics for digital age

Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg speaking at the inaugural Sarawak Media conference on Sunday (May 26). - ZULAZHAR SHEBLEE/The Star

KUCHING: The media profession should develop a code of ethics that advocates the responsible use of digital tools and technology, says Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg.

The Sarawak Premier said this was one way of tackling the challenges posed by new and evolving technology.

"There must be proper procedures in managing and disseminating information.

"My suggestion is a code of ethics drawn up by journalists themselves with a responsibility towards ensuring the wellbeing of the nation and mankind in general," he said after opening the inaugural Sarawak Media Conference here on Sunday (May 26).

Abang Johari cited artificial intelligence (AI) as a new technology that should be monitored.

"Generative AI can be misused to create false information. It can be difficult to evaluate whether information is genuine," he said.

The Sarawak Public Communications Unit and Kuching Division Journalists Association organised the two-day conference in conjunction with the National Journalists Day (Hawana) celebration, which is taking place here.

In his earlier speech, Abang Johari called on the global media industry to have a code of ethics for using digital tools.

"It is important to ensure that the media will use technological tools professionally, without misusing them for other agendas.

"I am pleased that Malaysia is looking into this, and I hope the global media industry will come up with an acceptable code," he said.

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