Expert: Why traditional media won’t go away

Dr (Mrs) Chinelo Ude -Akpeh, Lecturer in the Department of General Studies, College of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Jos, Plateau State, gave the reasons why the traditional media cannot die.

Ude-Akpeh said this at a bloggers summit on “Managing the Information Crisis in the Age of Citizen Journalism”, organized by the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), State Council from Anambra.

The summit was held in Awka, capital of Anambra, on Friday.

According to her, traditional journalism will never die out because many citizen journalists lack credibility.

The don said mainstream media is run by professional journalists, while citizen journalism is everyone’s business.

“When the news is out there, what most people look for is the source of the information that social media doesn’t have. People don’t take social media seriously anymore because a lot of people on social media don’t check not the information before posting it,” she said.

She said citizen journalists are not trained to disseminate information and as such cannot properly process credible information for the public.

Ude-Akpeh said citizen journalists were biased in their reporting because they lacked the skills to process information.

“Citizen journalists are not trained to practice journalism. They are not trained to process and report the news,” she said.

Also speaking, Director of Department of State Service DSS, Anambra State David Enoch Pawa urged bloggers to be aware of what they are offering to the public.

Pawa represented by Deputy Director, DSS, Anambra, John Ibienu, said the agency is concerned about misinformation from social media and bloggers in society.

According to him, criminals use social media to unleash and promote their selfish agenda.

He cited examples of domes where citizen journalists choose to profile tribe and religion with the intention of creating a crisis in society.

He did, however, say that whatever a person writes, they should be held accountable.

Also speaking, State Police Commissioner CP Echeng Echeng urged bloggers to always obtain permission from the agency involved before posting, especially on crime-related issues.

The CP represented by the command’s spokesman, DSP Tochukwu Ikenga, said that many militants hide under social networks to spread false information to the public.

“Activists hide under social networks to create problems in society. When we disseminate information about a crime, we must involve the responsible agency to have clearer information on the situation. There is a very big difference between social media and social activism,” he said.

He said that while the blogs remained, bloggers should make an effort to verify each story before making it public.

“You have to try to manage the information by verifying it before reporting it. We need to use social media to communicate information that will build the system rather than destroy it. We should always try to verify and process all the information we have before publishing it,” he said.

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