The survival of print media requires professional journalists and editors

SHAH ALAM 17 OCT: It is pointless to talk about the survival of the print media if the people and the students do not buy and read local newspapers, says veteran journalist Datuk A.Kadir Yassin.

Kadir who is also the Prime Minister’s Communication and Media Advisor said, if students studying mass communication do not read newspapers, then how do they expect to get employment in the media industry?

“Students should share and buy all newspapers to help the survival of the print media. Relying on hand phones to get information will not bring the desired changes in good journalism,” he said as a panellist at the forum Survival of Print Media “Why go soft when you can go hard” organised by Alumni Masscom held in UiTM here today.

Kadir also stressed that only the newspapers could counter fake news as the media have professional editors and writers.

“The situation now is the mainstream media tends to quote the media social. The media social is only a platform to socialise with friends and contacts and cannot be taken seriously,” said the ardent print media supporter.

The moderator, Prof. Hamid Mohamed asked whether the media can be independent without being funded by political parties.

The panellists and the organizers of the Survival of Print Media Forum held at Intekma Resort, UiTM, Shah Alam, Thursday (17th October )

Deputy Minister of Defence, Senator Liew Chin Tong said, the newspaper should have a package that includes dissemination of ideas, selling products, selling services and as a government arm to push information to the people.

“The Pakatan Harapan Government is prepared to commit media independence as long as the news is genuine.

“The newspaper should have value added elements where contents are concerned and this includes the contexts, background knowledge/facts, and analysis that could not be obtained from Wikipedia,” he said.

The Malay newspapers should also change their perceptions that the papers are not only read by the “kampung people” but by the educated urban Malays.

 Chin Tong also believes that the Malay newspaper should now reflect the ideas and the aspirations of the urban educated Malays. The editorial policies should be a mixture of religious, nationalism aspects and also with commercial values even though media and ideas cannot be separated.

Meanwhile the Advisor to Minister of Economic Affairs, Datuk Khalid Jaafar warns the local Malay newspaper editors and journalists to read a lot in order to have big and creative ideas.

According to Khalid, the newspapers should have new ideas, providing new insight and helps readers to liberate their soul. If such elements are found in the New York Times and Financial Times then people will buy and read them.

He asked whether such big and new creative ideas are found in Utusan Malaysia, Berita Harian and the New Straits Times newspapers and if they do not have such elements then they will be in “trouble”.

Meanwhile few participants of the forum also pointed out that newspapers should evolve with the digital media era in order to survive.

Veteran journalist Datuk Ahmad Talib pointed out that the big allocation given to the Education Ministry in providing free food for school children should also allocate some funds to subscribe newspapers as reading materials for teachers and students.

“Reading newspaper should be nurtured among students so that they will buy the paper and thus help the survival of the print media,” he reiterated. –Malaysia World News

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