Information Affairs Minister attends media forum

Riyadh, Feb. 26: His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al-Saud Charity Foundation held a media forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Information Affairs Minister Ali bin Mohammed Al-Romaihi attended the event at the invitation of foundation. King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies (KFCRIS) Chairman His Royal Highness Prince Turki Al-Faisal was also present.

Al-Romaihi commended the initiative of Saudi Crown Prince, Deputy Premier and Defence Minister His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud to host the media forum which addresses key issues. He praised the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the warm welcome and affable hospitality, hailing deep-rooted fraternal relations with Bahrain in all fields.

He said that the events which unfolded during the so-called Arab Spring had reduced the freedom of expression to mere expression without any purpose. He highlighted the detrimental role played by a number of satellite channels which relied on defamation to promote their media institutions, stressing the importance of enhancing community awareness to counter chaotic media, particularly social media websites.

“Within 60 seconds there are more than 350,000 tweets, over 70,000 pictures on Instagram and more than 400 hours uploaded on YouTube”, he said. “This confirms that the life span of any information is very short, compared to the massive flow of information in this space”, he added. He said that the conventional media remains influential and capable of reaching recipients, having preserved relative credibility in addressing issues, compared with the chaotic social media.

He said that the Arab media lacks institutions which are specialised in measuring media impact scientifically and accurately. He stressed the importance of investing on think tanks specialised in measuring public opinion and analyzing trends which would benefit the future of the vital media and communication sector.

The minister warned against foreign-backed organisations which are seeking to undermine regional security and stability, exploiting the social media platform to achieve their subversive agenda. He concluded by stressing the necessity of dealing with social media websites in total transparency and clarity, to counter rumours and defamatory campaigns.

A total of 47 speakers from 13 countries are taking part in the media forum, which features more than 33 discussion sessions and workshops moderated by experts specialised in media and content. The forum focuses on ways of utilizing artificial intelligence techniques to hone the skills of the personnel in charge of promoting digital media and help them conduct data-based online media campaigns.

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