POST TIME: 2 August, 2017 00:00 00 AM
ATCO, NOAB concerned over current state of media

ATCO, NOAB concerned over current state of media

Association of Television Channel Owners (ATCO) and Newspapers Owners Association (NOAB) yesterday expressed their deep concern over the current state of the country’s print and electronic media as these are facing a number of problems.

They said that the shrinking of revenue in the sector, and a need for increased investment have led to a weak industry in the print media. Under such a situation, if the ninth wage board is announced, it would put the print industry under severe pressure, said the associations in a joint statement.

The leaders of the media industry also expressed their concern over the misuse of the Section 57 of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Act and introducing the same under Section 19 of the proposed Digital Security Act, said the press release.

The leaders of ATCO and NOAB have unanimously agreed to convey their concerns to the government through the Ministry of Information. The decision was taken at a meeting held at the Dhaka Club in the capital.

They also expressed their concerns over the shrinking advertisement market for television and print media as a large portion of the advertisements are now going to the social media like facebook, twitter and youtube.

Though there is a national online policy to control online national media, there is no guideline for sites like google, youtube and various VAS in this regard, they said.

ATCO President Salman F Rahman said, “We are not against the government. We feel the necessity of the Section 57. But it does not mean that it has to be misused by any quarters.”

“We hope there would be specific guidelines for stopping the misuse of Section 57 of the ICT Act,” he said.

NOAB President and Prothom Alo Editor Matiur Rahman said, “A kind of anarchy is prevailing in the digital world as majority of the advertisements are being taken away by social media sites like facebook, twitter and youtube. Not only the government is losing a huge amount of revenue because of this, but also it has an adverse impact on the local media.”

They also said they would talk to the government with specific proposals to stop advertisements in foreign media. The leaders at the joint meeting hoped to find a solution of the problems through discussion.