President Dr Arif Alvi has voiced for curbing the trend of fake news in Pakistan as this culture had caused severe misunderstandings in the country.
He shared these views while talking to Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) Chairman Muhammad Saleem Baig in Islamabad on Tuesday.
From being a haphazard and sporadic activity, the phenomenon of fake news has been organized into a systematic campaign with an express aim to erode facts, undermine the truth and weaken people’s confidence. Driving this phenomenon is the unbelievable expansion of the media landscape in recent decades, propelled by the mind-blowing explosion in the field of information and communication technologies (ICTs).
The strides that the ICTs have made have broken the monopoly on news production and dissemination by providing unhindered access to people through open-source processes and tools. The democratization of the internet, coupled with easy availability of gadgets such as smartphones, has allowed people to report what they see, and stream their activities online at an incredible ease, requiring only the basic-level use of these gadgets. Media scholars have called this increasing engagement of common folks with media as ‘citizen journalism.’
The president said the media must work for uplifting the moral standards of the masses and try not to spread bogus news.
He asked PEMRA chairman to improve the quality of news and keep a check on the free progression of information.
He said the general public was confronting the issue of fake news in Pakistan and it was the duty of the concerned departments to stop the flow of fake news.
He further said that sharing false information is also against the soul of Islam and it is the ethical duty of media houses and Ulemas to play their part in controlling the spread of fake news.
The chairman PEMRA presented the Annual Report 2019-2020 to the president and explained the efforts of the authority for the facilitation and promotion of free and independent electronic media.
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