Arab media urged to report issues responsibly, respect privacy

Content across all platforms — including social media — should be aligned with the values and traditions of the Arab World, say industry experts

Photo by Shihab
Photo by Shihab

Waheed Abbas

Published: Tue 4 Oct 2022, 1:18 PM

Last updated: Tue 4 Oct 2022, 2:38 PM

The Arab media should report news and issues responsibly and avoid extremism for the sake of unity in the region, speakers said on Tuesday at the 20th edition of the Arab Media Forum.

Dr Ramzan Abdulla Al Nuaimi, Minister of Information Affairs for Bahrain, said the Arab media must convey responsible messages and should not be a platform to project news that may affect the unity of the Arab world.

“We must work with both traditional and social media and they should also be responsible and avoid extremism in all languages and forms because unity is important,” he said.

Al Nuaimi also called on all platforms to respect the privacy of every country and individual. Media's content, he added, should be anchored on Arab values.

Karam Gabr, president of The Supreme Council for Media Regulation (SCMR) of Egypt, said the media can either trigger a fire or become a source of warmth.

“There is a need for a joint Arab media strategy instead of each country having its own strategy. We need one standardised Arab media strategy, just like European Union. These are matters of great importance,” Gabr said during the panel discussion on the topic of 'Arab Media: Transformation and Impact'.


Bridging the gap

He pointed out that certain media platforms are pumping new ideas and called for prohibiting content that goes against the Arab World’s traditions and values.

“We have to create Arab content which is capable of filling the gap. We don't have Arab content that is filling the gap. We have authors, media people, and professionals who are capable of producing quality content and reaching where we want to be,” Gabr said.

He noted that media outlets must also be connected with social media.

“Social media has many advantages and governments can’t turn their back because they can lose,” he said, adding that social media accounts for up to 80 per cent of public opinion in Egypt.

“We have 75 million Facebook pages and 75 per cent of people get their information from social media and not from the government official media. Technology is developing quickly and we can’t control it. But content should go along with the social values of the Arab nation to save our future generations,” he added.

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