Code of ethics for print media launched
ISLAMABAD, January 28,2005: The first ever gender sensitive code of ethics for the print media was launched here on Friday, calling upon media persons to ensure a positive and fair portrayal of gender issues.
The code has been compiled by Uks, an NGO, in collaboration with the British Council under its the Gender Equality Project. Speaking on the occasion, Uks Director Tasneem Ahmar said the code addressed different aspects of gender sensitivity in the print media, including right to privacy, and pictorial depiction of women and rectifying their under representation.
She said the code was compiled after a countrywide drive in which print media journalists were engaged in dialogues and on- desk training and advocacy sessions by the Uks team.
Speaking as chief guest on the occasion, Senator Nisar A. Memon appreciated Uks’s effort, saying the initiative would go a long way in addressing gender discrimination in the print media.
A presentation was made on the occasion to inform the participants that as a follow up to the project and as a consolidated effort to change media attitude in the country, Uks aimed at developing a regular media watch group with strong regional networking.
A group of two to three individuals in each province will regularly monitor news items on gender and women development issues. To publicize the findings of this media watch group, a regular communication exercise in the shape of a media journal would be initiated.
During the regional conference as well as interactive dialogues organized by Uks, it was emphasized that the electronic media should also be made to follow the code of ethics.
It was argued that the electronic media in the country was in dire need of gender sensitivity and the proposed clauses needed little modification to suit the electronic media’s needs and issues.
Uks wishes to launch a project that envisages enabling women journalists working in print and electronic media to discuss issues of common concern by exploring the possibility of building professional networking at district, provincial and national levels.
During the process of dialogue, a senior journalist attributed the presence of sensational element in certain news items to the information provided by the police to the reporters. According to him, most crime reporters entirely rely on FIRs which, at times, are highly sensational in terms of content and language.