Need for code of ethics on AI

KUCHING: The media profession should come up with a code of ethics that advocates 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.

“The transformation of communication due to digitalisation is happening rapidly and this leads to challenges for the media industry.

“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 well-being of the nation and mankind in general,” he told reporters after opening the inaugural Sarawak Media Conference here yesterday.

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

“For example, generative AI can be misused to create false information. It can be difficult to evaluate whether information is genuine,” he said.

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

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

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

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

Abang Johari also said the Sarawak government welcomed input from the media industry towards providing credible information in tandem with the state’s development.

He said Sarawak is moving forward through its post-Covid development strategy which is based on economic prosperity, social inclusivity and environmental sustainability.

“Our objective includes the media industry as we believe that communication is important,” he said.

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