Media Freedom: Should there be a limit?

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Putting the way that Freedom to express is necessary but absolute freedom without check brings deformities with it, is not without substance. Media freedom is described as the freedom of various kinds of media and sources of communication to operate in political and civil society. Traditionally the propagation medium was limited to print which then was extended to television, and now internet is the latest addition in the mode of dissemination of information. 

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Why Freedom of Media is necessary?

Media is said to be the fourth pillar of democracy so it is a cornerstone for smooth functioning of a country. The free media in a country facilitates:

  • Dissemination of authentic information on public matters which otherwise is difficult to extract for a common citizen
  • Transparency in the functioning of the governing bodies, corporates or any other entity
  • Debate and opinions on issues that are of societal, economic and political importance
  • New ideas and critical thinking among citizens by stressing on facts and figures rather than presenting a lopsided view.

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Why Media should be regulated?

Freedom in any context is never absolute. Freedom of Media is essential but rising concerns of misinformation, data manipulation, fake news, populism etc. in the current environment are making authorities to place regulations on it to some extent.

 

Unlimited Media Freedom Harmful: The following supports the notion

Could Media be self regulated?

  • Media Freedom should be regulated or not is a debatable issue. A third thought of school is “Self – Regulated Media”.
  • The proponents of this school of thought opine that unregulated media may destabilize the socio- political environment of country and government interventions may jeopardize the freedom of expression. So, Self-regulated media is a mid-way between the two extreme methods.
  •  It is a conscious decision where the media people themselves take the onus of disseminating true and authentic information to the users.

Accordingly, where the Media does not shoulder the responsibility of bringing the truth and goes to extremes or gets biased, it is better to get it regulated – Self or by legal provisions.

 

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