Lahore: A three-day training cum consultative session on “How to Promote Peace through Constructive Journalism” was organized by Media Foundation 360 in Lahore on September 12, 2019 through September 14, 2019. There were 21 participants in total who belonged to Multan and had been selected for the training after a long-drawn and competitive selection process. A Media Foundation 360 team visited different press clubs and media houses in the Multan district to interview and shortlist the candidates who had shown willingness to join this training.
Session 1: Peace Journalism by Mubasher Bukhari
The session discussed importance of peace journalism, key elements and ethics and values of Peace journalism. The session concluded with examples of peace journalism and group work by participants. Senior journalist Mubasher Bukhari facilitated this session.
Session 2: Violent Extremism by Shehryar Warraich
This session covered dealing with violence, radicalization and extremism. Different factors and elements of violence were discussed to make the participants understand the core definition and actual meaning of extremism and radicalization.
Session 3 and 4: Media as Human Rights Defender by Shahzada Irfan
This session dealt with the contribution of media in human rights education, gaps and challenges and breakthroughs. The session concluded with recommendations to Human Rights Educators.
Session 1: Ethics of Journalism & Group Work by Shehryar Warraich
In this session, the trainer discussed journalism ethics with participants. He discussed the checklist of practices that should be avoided while reporting a story. The session concluded with an assignment to the participants of finding first page stories from National newspapers in Urdu language and point out stories that were reported in unethical way.
Session 2: Irresponsible journalism and Group work by Mubasher Bukhari
This session focussed on journalism practices that are considered irresponsible. For instance a list of trigger words was shared with participants that should be avoided. Other practices that account for irresponsible journalism were also discussed such as hate speech, concealing fats, lack of research and twisting statements. At the end of the session, participants were given an assignment to find examples of stories from Urdu newspapers and discuss with rest of the participants.
Session 3 and 4: Media Laws by Shahzada Irfan
The last two sessions discussed media laws and laws of the country regarding hate speech. The session also discussed the difference between hate speech and freedom of speech. The session also discussed how media professionals should follow media laws while reporting stories.
On the last day of session, story ideas were shared by the participants on inclusiveness. They were also told how select credible sources and a group work was done by the participants.
The last session was conducted by senior journalist and former Chairman of Pakistan Human Rights Commission Mr IA Rehman who spoke to participants about role of media in Human Rights. Mr Rehman said that journalists work for the greater good of the greater people. One of journalists responsibility is to work towards a pluralistic society and all difference should be valued. He also said that women play a vital role in contributing to a country’s economy, hence while reporting women issues, words should be used carefully. He said journalists should work towards improving greater unity in diversity so that no internal conflict should live amidst people.