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Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Adesina urges online publishers on credibility, as Haruna stresses importance

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, has urged Nigerian online publishers to guarantee the credibility of their publications so as to bolster the future of online media, reports ITRealms.

Speaking as a guest at the official unveiling of an online newspaper, Sundiata Post in Abuja Tuesday, Mr. Adesina noted that the call is to assure the sector is not awash by unenthusiastic publishers.

“There is this saying that bad coins tend to drag good coins out of circulation. So, if we leave online publishing for the bad ones, the good ones cannot make a difference,” he said, stressing that the good, the bad and the ugly among online publishers do exist, but is need to have more of the good ones, because it would be for the betterment of the country.

In his keynote address, the former Chief Press Secretary to General Abdullsalami Abubakar, Mallam Mohammed Haruna, while dwelling on “Has Online Journalism Come of Age?” noted that the invention of the Internet had transformed journalism into a truly all-comers’ trade.

Haruna said the question has become imperative due to the assumed conflict between online media’s speed and old media’s core value of accuracy.
“This assumption is largely false. Depending on how much in a rush one is, there has always been conflict between accuracy and speed since the emergence of mass media in the 19th century. The difference is that the new media, in its rush to be in real time in the news, seems more wired to sacrifice accuracy on the altar of speed than the old media,” he said.

The implication, Mallam Haruna pointed out is that online journalism tends to be less reliable than the offline journalism and on this ground, it could be argued that online journalism is less mature than the mainstream journalism.

Chairman of the occasion and the Director-General, National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Mr. Emeka Mba, defined online journalism as a media for the coming generation.

Represented by the Director, Public Affairs at NBC, Mr. Awwalu Salihu, the DG equally urged online publishers to focus carving integrity for themselves alongside accuracy and professionalism in order to have the buy-in of the society and its needs.

In his remarks, the Publisher, Sundiata Post Online Newspaper, Mr. Max Amuche, said that credibility and professionalism would continue to be the catchphrase of Sundiata.

As said by him, the publishers under the aegis of the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers (GOCOP) came together to make certain that the activity of the media is self-regulated.

Also speaking, the National Vice Chairman of GOCOP, Musikilu Mojeed, said proprietors of online media in the country are accomplished professionals, some of who rose from mere reporter to topmost management positions in some of Nigeria’s leading dailies.

GOCOP, Mr. Mojeed said, has been busy in the past months training its members on ethics and the latest trend in the media industry.

He disclosed plans by GOCOP to soon name charlatans who pass off as online newspaper publishers.

Mojeed emphasised that the GOCOP is partnering relevant Nigerian authorities to descend heavily on thieves who plagiarise the work of its members, even as he reiterated the determination of the organization to sanitise the online media industry.

+Remmy Nweke (ITRealms) in Abuja

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