Focus on new media as country observes World Press Freedom Day

[Original title: Focus on new media as Cambodia  observes World Press Freedom Day. Source: CAPJ]

Marginalized sectors of society would benefit much from new media, journalists, civil society groups and UN groups agreed on 3 May 2011 as they observed World Press Freedom Day in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Speaking in a forum attended by nearly 300 people, UNESCO representative in Cambodia Anne Lemaistre said the government should assist its people in gaining access to new technologies, particularly the Internet, in an attempt to bridge the digital divide.

“The Internet, satellite and digital broadcasting all offer new opportunities to promote freedom of expression and information, and the global exchange of ideas. Marginalized communities must be given a chance to have access to information through new media.

“Journalists are also the pillars of good governance as they assist with shedding light and creating open and honest democratic systems,” Lemaistre said.

This year’s theme was “21st Century Media: New Frontiers, New Barriers”.

Participants to the forum discussed the benefits brought by new media. The speakers also called on the courts to apply the Press Law rather than the Penal Code when dealing with cases involving journalists and their practices. They also urged the government to pass a law on access to information.

The World Press Freedom Day 2011 was co-organized by the Cambodian Communication Institute (CCI), Press Council of Cambodia (PCC), Club of Cambodian Journalists (CCJ), Department of Media Communication ( DMC) of  the Royal University of Phnom Penh, Cambodian Association for the Protection of Journalists (CAPJ) and the Cambodian Center for Independent Media (CCIM).