United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres urges broadcasters and other media stakeholders to ensure new technologies are accessible, as almost half of the world’s population is still not on-line. At the same time, he said these technologies must be affordable and a force for good.
“…These new technologies and platforms are sometimes misused to manipulate people and to fuel violence and hatred”, Mr Guterres said in a message to broadcasters attending the 16th Asia Media Summit in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
The annual conference with the theme “ Media Digitisation: Focusing on Developing Markets” is hosted by Cambodia’s Ministry of Information.
Guterres also spoke of the shrinking of civic space worldwide, saying that anti-media rhetoric is on the rise as well as cases of violence and harassment against journalists, including women.
“ We must all do our part to reverse this alarming trend, fight hate speech and false narratives, and defend the rights of the media. A free press is essential for peace, justice, sustainable development and human rights”, Guterres said.
He described the conference theme as timely and said he would await the participants’ contributions in tackling these challenges.