Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Info minister warns of dangers of ‘fake news’

Info minister warns of dangers of ‘fake news’

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A man browses social media on a laptop at a café in central Phnom Penh yesterday afternoon. Pha Lina

Info minister warns of dangers of ‘fake news’

Minister of Information Khieu Kanharith, at a roundtable hosted by the Club of Cambodian Journalists yesterday, urged netizens to watch what they repeat, lest they contribute to the circulation of inaccurate information on social media.

Kanharith maintained that most Facebook users simply read and share articles they like without checking their legitimacy. He gave as an example, a widely shared story about a young boy who drowned in Battambang.

An article circulated on Facebook claimed a doctor refused to treat the boy, when in reality the doctor simply wasn’t at the clinic. “We have to set a code of ethics . . . and a norm for Facebook users,” he said.

The ability to identify reliable sources of information has become an international issue, said Rene Gradwohl, a representative from Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung. A report released last week by Stanford University found two-thirds of American teenagers could not identify credible news stories.

“Media literacy should be disseminated in schools,” he said. In response to growing criticism, which emerged after so-called “fake news” became a phenomenon in the recent US presidential elections, Facebook itself released a statement last month pledging to do more to combat misinformation.

Moeun Chhean Nariddh, of the Cambodia Institute for Media Studies, said misleading news “is a concern”, but also warned against trying to “restrict the freedom of social media”. “Journalists should take the lead in preventing false information from circulating.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Construction begins on $1.5B Kampot seaport

    The International Multi-Purpose Logistics and Port Centre, principally invested by Kampot Logistics and Port Co Ltd and projected to cost $1.5 billion, has officially broken ground in Bokor town, Kampot province. The multi-purpose logistics and port centre, located in Prek Tnaot commune, will be built on

  • Cambodia eyes key role in electronics, auto hubs in SEA

    Two roadmaps, part of the LDC’s economic diversification plan, were designed to see it through its migration process, but experts say the journey might be arduous, particularly in the presence of two established hubs in the region By 2028, Cambodia hopes to have exited the

  • Hun Neng, lawmaker and PM’s brother, passes away aged 72

    Hun Neng, chairman of the 4th Commission of the National Assembly, has passed away from heart disease at the age of 72 on the afternoon of May 5, according to the Ministry of Information. Hun Neng is the older brother of Prime Minister Hun Sen, and was

  • Massive stingrays may live in Mekong’s deep pools

    US scientists have suggested that unexplored deep pools in the Mekong River in an area of Stung Treng could potentially be home to significant populations of giant freshwater stingrays, one of the world’s largest freshwater fish species. This comes as a fisherman hooked a 180

  • PM meets with US business giants

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has met with a number of major US companies who have expressed interest in investing in Cambodia, in a meeting convened by the US-ASEAN Business Council (US-ABC). A delegation of companies – including Amazon, Meta, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Ford, Visa and Pernod

  • CCC team off on US business trip

    The Kingdom’s leading economists and private sector representatives have called on the US to renew its tax preferential status for Cambodian exports, as a Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) delegation departed for a weeklong business visit to the US, where they will meet with