President’s Office clarifies on MPC dinner live streaming post

Director-General U Zaw Htay gives the press conference at the Office of the President. Photo: MNA
Director-General U Zaw Htay gives the press conference at the Office of the President. Photo: MNA

At a press conference held yesterday afternoon spokesperson Director General U Zaw Htay from the Office of the President said that during a dinner hosted in honor of Myanmar Press Council (MPC) members, the State Counsellor discussed with emphasis on the ethical media ought to have and follow.
The bi-weekly press conference is a regular press conference where the spokesperson from the Office of the President Director General U Zaw Htay explained about current affairs.
Director-General U Zaw Htay said at the press conference that he attended the dinner hosted in honor of MPC members in Thingaha Hotel, Nay Pyi Taw. Matters of ethics were discussed with the MPC members there. The discussion emphasized on the ethical media ought to follow. There is a lack of responsibility in social media. He was at the event and it was a dinner hosted to honor MPC members. All media, including state-owned were at the event only to take photographs of the event. After the photo op the media had to leave the event. But a media person did a live broadcast of the event.
The person who did the live broadcast should think why he/she was there? They were there to be honored as MPC members. And those who are honored should be honorable and follow ethics.
If media is permitted, the news should be published as a media. They need to have a proper identification as media personnel, must pass through news media x-ray gate, stay where media is allowed. There should be such differentiation. That is what ethics is, explained the Director General.
He continued and said that the State Counsellor was just asking a question openly and in a friendly manner. This was not something that happens here only as it was happening everywhere in every country. She was just saying something openly and this was broadcast live.
There are some civilities and courtesies that everyone must have. Politeness and courtesy must be maintained. If the MPC members could not differentiate this the question will be how they will differentiate on ethical matters? However, we will not blame anyone on this.
Another matter on that day is the example the State Counsellor set up to illustrate the point. She cited the Guardian newspaper. The news was published in our Information Committee. With regard to fake news, her example was about foreigners torturing a child in Cambodia which was published as being happening in Rakhine State. The State Counsellor spoke of fake news on Myanmar being published by big foreign media. She was discussing on how local media will respond to fake news. However it is regrettable to see a misunderstanding that came out. Media ought to review what ethics is and he hoped the Council would go forward without arguing, said the Director General on what the State Counsellor discussed when she met with MPC members.
Director-General U Zaw Htay added that in the past newspapers were read in the morning but nowadays, the surfing was done on smart phones. We watch and read what is coming out in the social media.
That was why news agencies are following Facebook. It is becoming a new media platform. Media has to follow this because it is following where the public goes. They use this to give a message to the public. Digital marketing is becoming popular. Print media could not oppose them.
Cooperation with the government is also required. This is the future of Main Stream Media and Social Media. Main Stream Media will come onboard Social Media. For example 70 percent of visitors visit CNN facebook while only 30 percent of visitors visit CNN Website. It is undeniable that Social Media is becoming a media and the best is to integrate.
Posts on Facebook are unsubstantiated and unconfirmed. It is substantiated and confirmed at the Official Page. Broader sense for media literacy will include digital literacy. When the people get more access to online, they’ll know how to differentiate between accurate and fake news. The next generation will be better than us, said the Director General.— MNA

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