1. What does it mean to be a journalist or media worker in Malaysia?
To be a journalist in Malaysia is to present the truth to the public in matters of public interest bearing in mind the number of media outlets (not many) currently available.
To be the messenger of information during this unprecedented political, economic and health and safety crisis in this country and around the world.
To be the bearer of verified news in this time when the public is too easily exposed to the comforts and discomforts in fake and unverified news.
To highlight the plight of the troubled and the needy in the eyes of authorities, leading to appropriate intervention.
Right now it’s a journalist’s role to make sure we all make it out of this pandemic together.
2. Do you see Media Freedom in Malaysia moving forward?
Yes I do and I don't think we are far off from it. In my opinion media freedom from where we stand now, is about 4 to 5 steps (in essence) away. But these steps still require a lot of shake-ups to change media in Malaysia for the better.
3. What can we do to be better?
Work together regardless of media outlets or organisation. Let people see that when they mess with one of us, they mess with all of us.
4. What can we do to ensure media freedom?
Journalists need to keep fighting to maintain media freedom and don’t let the public take us for granted, because media freedom is priceless.
Constantly pursue the idea of creating a realisation towards the importance of media freedom.
External parties need to work with the media. It’s not good enough avoid questions by saying say 'no comment' or 'I will get back to you on this'.
To ensure that media practitioners are sure that he or she has obtained the accounts of all the parties involved, rather than opting for clickbait or a ‘cliff-hanger’.
The #MYMediaMatters campaign is part of a multi-year project, Strengthening Malaysia’s Media for Change, supported by the European Union. For details please see the IFJ project page.