KUALA LUMPUR: The mainstream and alternative media should avoid disseminating false or distorted news that can trigger conflict, says Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak.
“The media must be responsible in how it conducts itself because what it publishes can influence the public and shape public opinion.
“Of late we have seen inaccurate news being published that brought the country to the brink of racial conflict. Only fast action by the authorities managed to avert what could have resulted in bloodshed.”
He posted this in his blog at http://sskeruak.blogspot.my, Monday, in response to a speech by Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Shah on Friday.
The sultan had remarked among others about the media’s role as an important mechanism that could influence the world’s direction. Sultan Nazrin Shah had also stressed that news processing by the country’s official media “that is too biased or counter-productive” would only separate the people from the government.
Hence, the sultan added, “ethics of news processing is a must and public interest has to be given importance”.
According to Salleh, the sultan’s message is “a timely reminder and something that both the mainstream and alternative media must take note”.
“It is necessary that we heed the advice of HRH the Sultan and ensure that the media helps in nation building and not the opposite,” he said.– BERNAMA