Regulation of the media -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Regulation of the media

Sir: The recent Facebook ban demonstrated the level of state intervention in obstructing the citizen’s access to information. The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has supposedly submitted a draft in the Lahore High Court that calls for draconian laws and more curbs on the alternate media of the internet.

Such laws are bound to fail as in the case of PEMRA, which has failed to play its role as a regulatory body. Bureaucrats who have little interest and no expertise govern bodies like the PTA and PEMRA. Such regulatory bodies must comprise of renowned media persons and members of civil society who can, together, formulate an appropriate code of conduct. The notion of self-regulation is best suited as the media can be guided but not dictated to. The most vital stakeholders are the citizens whose voice is ignored when such laws are drafted. It is vital to incorporate their feedback as they are the primary beneficiaries.
SADIA HUSSAIN
Islamabad
Source: Daily Times
Date:7/6/2010