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Serving Sri Lanka

This web log is a news and views blog. The primary aim is to provide an avenue for the expression and collection of ideas on sustainable, fair, and just, grassroot level development. Some of the topics that the blog will specifically address are: poverty reduction, rural development, educational issues, social empowerment, post-Tsunami relief and reconstruction, livelihood development, environmental conservation and bio-diversity. 

Monday, April 11, 2005

Sunday Observer Media Watch

Online edition of Sunday Observer - News: "The Sunday Observer was privileged to participate in two civil society discussions two weeks back, both pertaining to disaster management. The focus of attention naturally concentrated on the tsunami disaster and how best we could manage it.

It was revealed that a host of issues and problems had cropped up, especially in relation to law and order, human rights, property rights and individual privacy that the existing legal system is unable to cope with.

The public including the tsunami victims as well as law enforcement officials are helpless in this situation, which requires urgent attention of the lawmakers or the legislators.

Naturally the role of media was also discussed at length. The media earned both bouquets and brickbats with the latter exceeding the former. There was consensus that the media had failed to adequately bring into focus these new issues and provide a platform for healthy dialogue.

Furthermore, the conduct of the media itself left much to be desired according to some participants. The media by virtue of its role in society is well equipped to criticise anyone and everyone. It is a monitor of power, both political and economic at all levels.

While the media relishes criticising others it hardly opens its columns and channels for self-criticism. Nor does it encourage others to criticise it in one's medium.

The Sunday Observer thinks it is time for the media to mend its ways. It should open its columns and channels to readers, listeners and viewers to criticise the media, point out its shortcomings and malpractices.

As a socially responsible newspaper committed to the best practices and traditions of our industry the Sunday Observer will be devoting an entire page - MEDIA WATCH - on the last Sunday of every month beginning April 24 where the public could freely express their views, grievances and complaints about the functioning of the media.

We earnestly anticipate your contributions to MEDIA WATCH. Please limit your contributions to 300 words maximum in order that we could accommodate the views of more persons.

- EDITOR"


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