Hoax has become a global issue: Minister

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Hoax or fake news has become an issue not only in Indonesia but also globally, Communications and Information Minister Rudiantara stated at the World Press Freedom Day 2017 event here, Tuesday.

The minister was referring to the statement released by the Russian Embassy on Monday (May 1) that is also striving to counter hoax by providing legitimate information in a timely manner, supported by facts, figures, and concrete examples.

The embassy has also opened a special section on its website to review fake news as a key means of resisting aggression from the side spreading the information.

In Indonesia, Minister Rudiantara stated that all parties have begun supporting the government to stop the circulation of hoax news by declaring an anti-hoax society, for instance.

Such a movement has also been followed by the Indonesian journalists who have created an Anti-hoax Journalists Network, with a definite membership, to be able to offer clarification.

To this end, Minister Rudiantara has urged the mainstream media to help filter out hoax news by verifying and clarifying the process, as fake news mostly originate from social media.

"Hoax appears mostly on social media, and those who spread it largely focus on speed and not on accuracy," he stated.

He strongly criticized the actions of several irresponsible people who exploit the freedom of disclosing information in the country to spread fake news.

The government has also been attempting to counter the spread of fake news by implementing the Electronic Information and Transactions Law and blocking gambling websites and sites containing fraudulent information regarding different ethnic, religious, racial, and social groups. However, such efforts will not be sufficient without the involvement of the members of society and the journalists.(*)