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Ethical Journalism Vital In Creating Informed Society - Najib



KUALA LUMPUR, April 21 (Bernama) -- Ethical journalism is vital in creating an informed society as is being planned for by the Communications and Multimedia Ministry in its Communications and Multimedia Blueprint, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He said the country was now in the era of post-truth where the existence of fake news, especially in various social media platforms with huge followers, was a norm.

"What is more saddening (is that) the public who have been exposed to fake news and not based on facts, take whatever is being served to them blindly.

"They cannot differentiate between diamond and glass. The emotions of the public have superceded their sanity. We know that the authenticity of information disseminated through social media can be doubted...We know blogs, Facebook and social media portals are not bound by the ethics of the conventional media.

"If this is not curbed and controlled, the fake news phenomenon will become a threat to national security from various angles. Fake news will lead to false history, we cannot differentiate between right and wrong," he said at the Malaysian Press Institute (MPI)-Petronas Malaysian Press Night (MPN) 2017 here tonight.

Najib was accompanied by his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor at the largest gathering of the Malaysian journalism community.

Also present were Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak, Joint Chairman of MPN 2017 who is also Harian Metro/Metro Ahad group editor Datuk Mustapa Omar, MPI chief executive officer Datuk Dr Chamil Wariya, Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) chairman Datuk Seri Azman Ujang, Bernama Editor-in-Chief Datuk Zakaria Abdul Wahab and also editors-in-chief of most o fthe mainstream media organisations in the country.

The prime minister said the media had its own responsibilities to explain to the public on what facts and spreading slander were all about.

The government was now looking seriously into the emergence of fake news, causing the ministry to come out with a website called "sebenarnya.my" which was now accessible by all quarters to determine whether or not a particular news item that went viral was fake, he said. -- BERNAMA