Manila Hotel
30 March 2016

President Benigno S. Aquino III challenged several media executives and practitioners to still adhere strongly to the two most important values of the industry – integrity and truth — amid the expanding media technologies.

“It is true that your job is much more complicated today, because the need to expand your operations to new media forms, which have their own limitations in terms of dissemination. At the same time, dissemination does not matter so much as your most basic responsibility, which is to deliver information – information that the people can trust, that can lead to fruitful discussions on issues of national and global importance, and that can even lead to positive transformation,” the President said at the opening ceremonies of Publish Asia 2016.

Speaking before 300 attendees from different media organizations around the world, President Aquino explained that some of the outlets have demonstrated a tendency to sensationalize titles or to resort to the tactic ‘clickbait’ which is an act of posting provocative parts to encourage the readers to read the whole article. According to him, this may lead to an instance where readers may choose only to view that snippet and assume that it already presented the whole story.

He also underscored that media plays a crucial role before, during and after the May 2016 elections as Filipinos need a just and comprehensive accounting for this historic event. He spelled out that all of the candidates’ ways of trying to win the people’s trust appeared in the outlets’ pages that are read by millions of people.

“By far and large, you – the press – already have our people’s trust. This alone reflects the magnitude of your responsibility to wider society: to disseminate information, instead of speculation; to foster higher levels of discourse, instead of blind sensationalism; to empower citizenries and nations, instead of tearing them down,” he challenged the media practitioners.

Publish Asia is an annual gathering of media executives from Asian newspapers and news publishing industries by the World Association of Newspapers – INCA FIEJ Research Association (WAN-IFRA). This year’s event was held at the Manila Hotel where about 300 media executives from over 30 countries convened together for a three-day conference from 29-31 March 2016 with the theme, “Mapping Challenges and Opportunities in the New Asian Media Game.”

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