• Saturday, July 20, 2024
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Be critical but aim for balance at all times, Aigbogun tells journalists

Be critical but aim for balance at all times, Aigbogun tells journalists

Frank Aigbogun, chief executive officer, BusinessDay Media Ltd, has underscored the importance of maintaining a critical perspective while striving for balance in story writing.

Aigbogun gave the charge while presenting a paper at a two-day training session for media executives tagged, “Upskilling on trends in the telecom sector for media executives,” on Thursday, in Abuja.

In his presentation, “Navigating Specialised Reporting: Exploring the Communications and Digital Economy”, Aigbogun stressed the importance of responsible journalism, urging media practitioners to balance their freedom with a sense of duty, ethics, and patriotism.

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He said, “Be critical but aim for balance all of the time, context matters always, aim to test any policy or pronouncement. Things are not always as they seem. Even conventional wisdom can sometimes be wrong in Nigeria.

“As journalists that will survive in an era of emerging technologies like AI, you must be well equipped to be able to interpret correctly. It is incumbent on the media to exercise this freedom with a sense of duty, ethics and patriotism. The information disseminated to the public must be accurate, balanced, and devoid of sensationalism,” he noted.

The veteran journalist cautioned against the danger of misinformation and disinformation, which can damage individual reputations and destabilise society.

He emphasised that journalists must hold power to account, scrutinise policies, and highlight injustices, but should do so with a commitment to fairness and objectivity.

“It is a digital era. Better to know that the audience is busy and in a hurry. So, tell the story quickly. “Being critical is essential in our profession.”

“It is our duty to question, investigate, and reveal the truth. However, this critical lens must be tempered with a dedication to balanced reporting. We must present all sides of a story to ensure our audience receives a comprehensive and fair view,” said Aigbogun.

He pointed out that the current media landscape, characterised by rapid dissemination of information and the prevalence of social media, presents unique challenges. He noted that the pressure to publish quickly can sometimes lead to biased or incomplete reporting.

“In the race to be first, we must not sacrifice accuracy and impartiality,”

The punisher warned. “Our credibility depends on our ability to deliver well-rounded and thoroughly researched stories.”

Aigbogun also addressed the role of personal biases in journalism. He encouraged journalists to be aware of their perspectives and actively seek diverse viewpoints. “We all come with our own set of experiences and beliefs, but it is crucial that we do not let these cloud our judgment. Seek out voices that challenge your own and present them fairly.”

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The call for balanced reporting comes at a time when media trust is fluctuating globally. Surveys indicate that while some audiences are increasingly skeptical of news sources, others rely heavily on their preferred outlets, leading to polarised information consumption.

The event aimed to keep media stakeholders informed about the latest developments, regulatory strides, challenges, and prospects in the telecom industry.

Topics covered included an overview of trends in the local and international telecom ecosystem, the role of compliance and consumer protection, enhancing a healthy competition regime, cybersecurity issues, and the impact on the digital economy.