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Association of Caribbean Media Workers marks World Press Freedom Day 2023, urges balance with use of social media

Posted: Wednesday, May 3, 2023. 8:23 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: The Association of Caribbean Media Workers (ACM) has warned against decision-makers attempting to bypass traditional media in mass communication, making more use of social media instead.

In its official statement for World Press Freedom Day, the ACM said, “This approach appears to be a clear avoidance of scrutiny at press conferences and interviews. We urge an end to such a practice that robs the public of details that will potentially allow them to make rational decisions. These deficiencies in freedom of expression are leading to dysfunctional societies.”

The ACM’s “unwavering” position is that as the ills of misinformation and disinformation on social media are exposed, there is “invaluable space for journalism as a means of freedom of expression. Professionally practiced to ensure accuracy and fairness; journalism is the only conduit to cultivate the public as change agents for transparency, good governance, and accountability.”

In addition to freedom of expression which is an almost universally recognized as a fundamental constitutional right, some countries have gone a step further and enshrined freedom of the press.

The theme of this year’s World Press Freedom Day – “Shaping a Future of Rights: Freedom of expression as a driver for all other human rights”- throws the spotlight on the invaluable role of the freedom to receive and impart ideas.

The ACM salutes the focus on the importance and connection of freedom of expression to other human rights and responsibilities and states that in its absence, the public loses the opportunity for proper education and information about their rights.

Therefore, on behalf of the executive and members of the ACM as well as all other media workers across the Caribbean, the ACM urges all of us to be vigilant and guard against new laws, regulations, and practices that violate the tenet of freedom of expression.

 

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