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Ethics code for media persons

IMPHAL, April 11:  A one day workshop on media ethics organized  by the All Manipur Working Journalists Union has recommended setting up a committee to list a set of conducts for the media persons in the state to strictly adhere to media ethics.
The workshop on media ethics held at the Manipur Press Club was sponsored by state directorate of information and public relations and senior journalists of the state put across their views on does and don’ts to be followed by media persons.
In view of the conflict situation in the state, senior journalists of the state felt the need for list of does and donts for media persons in the state and also pressures from both the state and non-state actors on media houses.
Following the threats and pressures, the journalist body already had framed a code of conduct titled local adjustment in the line of the guidelines issued by the Press Council of India.
Following threats from various faction of militants on editors concerning publication of statements issued by the groups or rival groups, daily publications in Manipur often are disrupted sometimes even for days.
Speaking in the workshop, senior journalists of the state expressed their views and stressed the need to update the existing code of conduct  to suit the changing situations to give more strength to the media houses against mounting pressures on media houses.
Senior journalists further expressed concern over growing trend of “paid news” in the state over the years. They expressed that like every professionals in their own field, media persons must honour the ethics.
Addressing the gathering on the theme press council of India (PCI), A. Mobi stated that PCI had suggested over 10,000 guidelines in 1976 and invited feedbacks without any result. Later in 1982, PCI finally realized the need to frame and shape media ethics according to local imperatives.
B. B. Sharma, retired deputy director (news) All India Radio, Imphal stated that Journalists should strive to maintain integrity and honesty and should not do anything that could jeopardise the public confidence on media persons.
Senior journalist and former president of AMWJU AK Sanaton said that media persons have often overlooked ethics and professional code of conduct.
Former AMWJU president N. Tombiraj condemned yellow journalism which has become a common trend and expressed the need to guard ourself against it and maintain the integrity of professional ethics.
The  workshop concluded with two resolutions adopted. One sub committee to survey and analyze backgrounds of media person so that wage related issue may be gathered and  a sub committee to discuss and deliberate ethics of media according to local imperatives.



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