CYBERJAYA – The SEBENARNYA.MY portal was launched today for the public to check on the authenticity of news spread through the social websites.
Launched by Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak, the portal developed by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia
Commission (MCMC), is among efforts taken by the government to curb the spread of false news and ensure the public receive truthful news.
In his speech at the launch, Salleh said related information would be gathered, analysed, validated and uploaded to the portal for reference by the public regardless of their political background.
He said till now, the MCMC had identified close to 1,000 false news of public interest being spread in the country.
“False news not only confuse but could also threaten security, prosperity and wellbeing of the people and country.
“This does not only happen in Malaysia but also in the United States, Indonesia and the European countries,” he said.
According to Salleh, generally netizens in Malaysia allocated about three hours daily for surfing the Internet and the study conducted also found that among the activities was obtaining news and information.
Stressing that the SEBENARNYA.MY portal bore the main message of “Not Sure, Don’t Share”, Salleh said: “Do not read and accept any news completely without verification.”
He said through this portal, the government wanted to educate the public not to totally accept news or information without verifying it first.
“We don’t want the public to share news with the excuse that it was received from another group and seeking explanation,” he said.
Salleh also stressed that curbing the spread of false news should be a joint effort of the government and people.
The government, he said, had carried out various programmes and campaigns such as “Klik dengan Bijak” (Click Wisely) and “Semak sebelum Sebar” (Check before Disseminating) to efficiently curb the spread of false news.
“However, the ministry and MCMC also view that the awareness programme needs to be accompanied by initiatives to enable the public to check and report on unverified news that they receive,” he said.
Salleh also explained that the portal was not geared towards the coming 14th general election or to curtail the freedom of expression of any quarters.
“The SEBENAR.MY portal is not just meant for political news, but all types of information received from the social media, blogs and other sources can be checked, verified and shared.
“This portal is created not because of the general election and is not owned by the government alone. This portal is for the people. The opposition too can use this portal to obtain valid news,” he said.
Salleh said the ministry would be promoting the portal nationwide so that the public could access this technology. – BERNAMA