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Authoritarian regimes urged to embrace online media

2012/06/02 21:59:55

Tianjin, June 2 (CNA) Chen Kuo-hsiang, chairman of Taiwan's national Central News Agency, said Saturday in China that authoritarian regimes and mainstream media should embrace online media, which are taking a more central role as vehicles of public opinion and news dissemination.

As online media such as Facebook, Twitter and the Chinese microblogging service Weibo gain popularity, mainstream media should transform themselves into interactive platforms that allow audiences to take part in content production and supervision.

Instead of censoring and blocking online social media, authoritarian regimes and mainstream media should open themselves up to them, or risk alienating the general public.

Media in authoritarian societies need to evolve from propaganda machines and monopolies to organizations that serve, communicate with and share information with the public, Chen said at a conference in Tianjin on cooperation between media outlets in Taiwan and China and the impact open-source media have on traditional media.

Chen also suggested that online media build on their existing advantage of wide reach and increase their clout by creating platforms that encourage deep discussion and sharing.

Moreover, they can also cooperate with other quality media outlets to generate investigative reports and better foster the development of civil society, Chen said.

Chen also advised media to increase public access to insightful articles and analyses through forwarding and links.

(By Tsai Su-jung and Scully Hsiao)