Unethical but Successful?

Overgeneralizing in any form of communication stems from a mind incapable of thinking rationally and logically. Overgeneralization can be seen in fallacious statements that are so general that they oversimplify reality and ignore important details.

By Masterwordsmith

The Malaysian Insider reported:

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein claimed that some bloggers, unlike local journalists, do not adhere to the rules and ethics of journalism in their bid to garner popularity.

Local journalists adhered to ethics but these bloggers did not, and this was what differentiated the journalists from these bloggers, he said at the presentation of the 2009 ExxonMobil Journalism Awards here on Monday night.

Hishammuddin claimed that journalists in the country would have nothing to fear so long as their reports adhered to the ethics of journalism, adding that they would be accepted by the people.

He also claimed that journalists who reported the truth would not be penalised and those who spread slander would not be successful.

In September 2008, Sin Chew reporter Tan Hoon Cheng was arrested under the ISA. Read all about it AT THIS LINK where Malaysian Press Institute chairman Datuk Azman Ujang said that Tan’s arrest was a test case for journalism in the country.

Malaysiakini also got into trouble for reporting the cow head issue and were pressured to remove the videos of the event. Weren’t they reporting the truth?

Our Home Minister now assures us that “those who report the truth would not be penalised.” But is it that simple?

Reporting the truth in journalism starts with the sourcing of information. Truth, in reality, exists in two forms– in the issue that is being reported and in the mind of the receiver.

In Malaysia, telling the truth in reporting HURTS the messenger, the ones who do not want to hear the message and the ones who receive the message. Ironically, in Malaysia, it does not hurt the one who gave the message if they are have the carte blanche to publish insensitive, provocative remarks or articles. Read what Wikipedia has to say about Utusan Malaysia AT THIS LINK.

* Why did our Home Minister equate bloggers to journalists? Journalists are professionally trained to provide news whereas bloggers are ordinary people who have decided to pen their opinions, thoughts/suggestions in an Internet website for either self-expression or to engage others in a lively forum. Such a comparison is an affront to their creativity and their right to speak their minds.