Digital media becomes important platform for speedy information

ISLAMABAD, Sep 15 (APP): The powers of social media in the digital era could not be ruled out as it helped out to create awareness among the masses about their due rights, highlighting injustice in society etc.

“Platform of social media should be handled with care and may not be used for misinformation or to create hate,” an official of Ministry for IT and Telecommunication while talking to APP said.

It was unfortunate that social media as an important platform and a source to transmit speedy information was being used by some elements to spread fake information to achieve their nefarious designs.

In Pakistan, he said that Prime Minister Imran Khan has had taken notice of the issues on various occasions and issued instructions in this regard.

The present government under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan is more focused on the active use of social media to highlight their three-year performance and other issues confronting the masses, he said.

The official informed that the Digital Pakistan Policy 2021 is being developed through an all-inclusive approach to facilitate the IT industry, address impediments that prevent a higher level of ICT adoption in Pakistan, and positively impact the growth of ICT exports.

The Government of Pakistan (GOP) has outlined a vision of accelerated digitization and transformation of Pakistan into a knowledge-based economy to spur economic growth through innovation and entrepreneurship, he added.

The Digital Media Wing (DMW) is working as a strategic unit of the government to effectively counter the fake/libelous news and also highlight the development agenda of the government.

It disseminates result-oriented digital media content, videos, animations, info-graphics, information, and authentic updates from the government, Federal Ministries, and Prime Minister office’s social media assets.

The DMW is committed to revolutionizing how media is consumed in Pakistan. It maintains a data-driven, growth-oriented team to further the interests of the State of Pakistan locally and internationally. It strengthens the government for the 21st century with robust, authentic, and high-quality online communication platforms.

The DMW is also responsible for creating the digital content for official social media of the government of Pakistan on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram. It is organizing and verifying the social media accounts of all federal government ministries besides enhancing their digital media presence.

It is also working on capacity building of Federal Ministries on Digital Media including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram. The DMW team is in direct coordination with the Public Relations Officers and covers daily important press conferences, activities, meetings, and events of Federal Ministers on Digital Media.

Zaheer Ahmed, a social media user talking to APP said that this platform was a powerful mode across the world including Pakistan to highlight any issue. But, he viewed that sometimes this important tool was misused by transmitting disinformation to malign someone.
He said there should be some criteria to control such elements.

According to Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), Chairman Maj Gen (Retd.) Amir Azeem Bajwa, a response from social media platforms was usually in accordance with their own community guidelines and not in compliance with the laws of Pakistan.

As per the law, the PTA had a responsibility to protect citizens from online harm in accordance with the local laws and societal norms, he added. However, he asked social media companies to respect the laws of Pakistan.

Keeping in view, the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan of digitalization, the IT Ministry, through NITB, is in a process of rolling out the e-Office suite in the Federal Government to ensure efficiency, accuracy, effectiveness, good governance, transparency, and accountability in decision making and delivery of efficient and cost-effective public services to citizens of Pakistan.

In this regard, access to e-office suite software has been provided to more than thirty-one Ministries/Divisions and 50 attached departments whereby more than 10500 staff has been trained on the said e-governance system.

The numbers of IT companies have increased to 4641 as of 30 June 2021 compared to 1762 valid registrations as of 30 June 2018.

In Pakistan, according to PTA, the number of active cellular mobile subscribers reached 185 million by July 2021. The number of broadband subscribers reached 104.43 million in July while the broadband penetration was recorded at 47.68 percent during the same period.