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Amid Internet boom information monopoly is impossible – specialists

July 05, 2012, 16:14 UTC+3

The issue of the day is not competition between electronic and printed media, but the development of social media

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MOSCOW, July 5 (Itar-Tass) —— Amid the Internet boom and soaring popularity of social networks, when virtually every user has an opportunity to indulge in journalism, it is utterly impossible to establish an information monopoly, as follows from what was said at the section Electronic Mass Media – Diversity of Models and World Monopoly on Information, held at the World Media Summit on Thursday.

Social media create new dynamics and a new environment, and professional journalists have to put up with this, said the Associated Press Vice-President and Editor-in-Chief, John Daniszewski. Today’s is a volatile environment, in particular it has been so over the past two-three years. The issue of the day is not competition between electronic and printed media, but the development of social media, Daniszewski believes. In his opinion blogging breeds a great number of unprofessional media contributors, which causes adverse effects on journalism in general.

There is a great variety of models. Monopoly on information is no more. This reality has to be put up with, Daniszewski said. In his opinion knowledge of the audience and readership and authenticity of information is essential for large agencies’ and newspapers’ existence in the media space.

The president of the Swiss Press Club Guy Mettan believes that the professional, traditional media should try to regain influence on the information picture of the day. He recalled that in the past the public opinion depended on good journalism and mass media enjoyed authority and credibility.

These days a post in a social network may trigger any sort of event – a revolution in Tunisia, or whatever, Mettan said.

He agreed with the opinion of Russian State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin, expressed at the summit’s full-scale session earlier in the day to the effect it is impossible to suppress or control the Internet.

It is worth getting back to the basics of the profession – checking the facts. Mettan believes this is a duty of the traditional mass media to fill in this space.

Daniszewski agreed that traditional mass media must safeguard a professional approach to covering events. He acknowledged it was very pleasant for him to see young journalists making on-line reports from the scene of the event and also publish photographs and video clips at once.

He remarked, though, that quite often such people had mastered technologies but stayed ignorant of the true values of journalism. Many of them do not know, possibly, because they are so young, that it is wrong to streamline somebody’s quotes, even though these quotes may be clumsy, Daniszewski said. He is certain that an on-line reporter’s duty is not only to show events, but to analyze them in a balanced way, and to convey this to the recipients of information. This is what professional journalism is all about, Daniszewski said.

The World Media Summit, which opened in Moscow on Thursday, has brought together an unprecedented number of participants – over 300 top managers representing 213 mass media from 103 countries – presidents, general directors and editors-in-chief of such giant news agencies and television and radio channels as the Associated Press, the BBC, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, Kyodo, Xinhua and MENA. The heads of nine international organizations, including UNESCO, and a delegation of the European Parliament were invited to the forum.

ITAR-TASS is the organizer of the two-day event.


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