Nigeria Online Media Practitioners have been charged to always uphold the principle of objectivity in their reportage, AMILOADED reports.
Dr Oludayo Tade, a lecturer at the Sociology Department University of Ibadan, gave the charge during a workshop organized by the Southwest Group of Online Publishers (SWEGOP) held at Ilaji Hotel and Resort, Akaran, Ibadan, the Oyo State capital on Friday.
Dr Tade, who emphasized the need for fairness, enjoined publishers across the country to imbibe professional and ethical standards if they are desirous of gaining public trust.
In his lecture entitled ‘Peace Journalism through online reportage’ Dr Tade urged journalists to use their profession to promote peace and advancement of the society and not otherwise
He stressed that it is morally imperative for Publishers to observe the highest professional and ethical standards while carrying out their duties.
He said, “Journalism ethics, no doubt, seek to provide character and integrity to the media profession.
“It is important to ensure that media men are well guided to continue to play their roles through enhanced professionalism and engaging in ethical best practices.
“Putting out news item whose veracity and integrity are not established no doubt can erode the trust and credit of any medium.”
The media expert stressed that the people depend largely on digital media to create images, form opinions and quite often get guidance on issues.
He maintained that by nature, journalism has direct impact on individuals, groups and institutions.
“Hence, practitioners have to be guided by some norms in the discharge of their responsibility of transmitting information accurately.
The University of Ibadan lecturer, however, highlighted the strengths of Online Journalism to include: unlimited space, global distribution, convergence (text, graphic and video), interactivity, immediacy and storage of retrieval.
He admonished online media practitioners to jettison reports that lack credibility, opinion-based, lack of ethical values, unbridled sensationalism, unsubstantiated opinions among others.
In his address of welcome, SWEGOP chairman, Olayinka Agboola, described online Journalism as indispensable in enhancing good governance.
He noted that the workshop was needed, considering the contemporary realities in the country.
He added that there is need for capacity building for Online Publishers to improve on the way they carry out their onerous assignments.
Participants were drawn from Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Ondo and Ekiti while the workshop will be rounded off on Saturday (today).