Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo has voiced support for the immediate issuance of the publisher rights regulation as a means to bring about improvements in the national press industry.

The urge to legalize journalistic copyright regulations was one of the suggestions put forward during the commemoration of 2022 National Press Day hosted by the National Journalists Association in Kendari, Southeast Sulawesi.

"We leave it to the National Journalists Association and the Press Council, so that we can finalize the regulation. I will continue to (support) it after the (decision) has been made (regardless of whether it is) a new law, revision of the old law, or using a Government Regulation," he noted from the Bogor Presidential Palace on Wednesday.

The president offered three options regarding the stipulation of the publisher rights regulation: drafting a new law, revising the existing law pertaining to the media industry, or issuing a government regulation.

He stated that the press industry ecosystem must be streamlined in order to create a fair competitive climate between the mainstream media and foreign digital platforms.

He also reminded that the press must be able introspect and improve itself while also focusing on the nation's big agendas in order to be able to keep up with the changes in the era of digital transformation.

Digital transformation in the press industry ecosystem is needed to produce quality journalistic works that are faster and stay accurate.

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The press industry had been under pressure in the last two years due to digital disruption. Apart from the pandemic, there is also pressure from giant foreign media platforms that have compromised the economic potential and influence of the mainstream media.

As a result of media competition, various problems have arisen, such as the rise of alternative sources of information other than the media that pose risks, such as misinformation, which might trigger confusion in the public.

"The growing trend of information that is merely after 'clicks' or 'views', the flood of contents that only seek viral status, massive misleading information and even fighting that cause confusion and also discord," the president elaborated.

Thus, Widodo urged all to realize information sovereignty together.

It could be achieved by promoting a healthy national press industry ecosystem, developing and reinforcing a national advertising platform, and creating a national video platform to avoid being fully dependent on foreign video platforms.

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General Chairperson of the Central National Journalists Association, Atal Sembiring Depari, remarked that the draft publisher rights regulation had been submitted to the government since October 2021.

He expected that the draft regulation could be followed up immediately, as it was awaiting the government to process it.

Chairman of the Press Council, M. Nuh, also drew attention to the domination by global digital platforms, with the risk of turning into digital feudalism or digital colonialism.

Nuh affirmed that the publisher rights draft had been submitted directly to Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Mahfud MD, and Communication and Information Technology Minister Johnny G. Plate. He is optimistic that the law would be published soon.

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Translator: Mentari D G, Mecca Yumna
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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