MPI chief executive officer Datuk Dr Chamil Wariya. NST file pic

NILAI: The Malaysian Press Institute (MPI) urged the establishment of the Malaysian Media Council (MMM) to be reconsidered to protect and upgrade mainstream media journalism in the country in line with current changes.

MPI chief executive officer Datuk Dr Chamil Wariya said the need for its establishment was in line with the Fourth Industrial Revolution era (Industry 4.0).

He said new challenges including the explosion of information and communication technology and freedom of expression, often abused by social media users, was also one of the challenges faced by the mainstream media.

“We feel that the establishment of MMM should be considered by the industry as the challenges have widened. Even if there is a certain constraint on the establishment of the MMM, the involved parties need to sit down to discuss the best way for the future.

“Many important aspects of journalism can be maintained through the setting up of MMM, especially journalistic ethical codes. The codes which were released in 1980 should be reviewed in line with current media development," he said when met after delivering a keynote address at the Islamic Media and Journalism Seminar 2017 (iMEJ 2017) at Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) here today.

Also present was iMEJ advisor and USIM lecturer Prof. Dr. Mohd Yahya Mohamed Ariffin.

A total of 100 students from USIM's Journal of Communication Studies attended the seminar.

Among the panelists were Harian Metro Editor Adam Salleh, Utusan Malaysia former senior journalist, Syahril A Kadir and former The Star journalist, Yusof Ghani.

Chamil said effort to realise the establishment of the MMM should have the support of all parties, although there were constraints.

"We have to follow the example of the Media Council of Indonesia which is aimed at protecting media freedom, improving the quality of journalism, monitoring the implementation of journalistic ethics and establishing cooperation between the media, the community and the government.

"Even the size of the media in the country is not as big as in Indonesia, but the need for MMM’s establishment needs a serious consideration for the benefit of the profession itself,” he said.

Chamil also emphasised the importance for every journalist to adhere to the principles and ethics of journalism.

"Journalists need to avoid incorrect and defamatory reporting because that is against the ethics and principles of Islam," he said.

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