The media must be more active in pursuit of their legitimate responsibilities
Advising the public of what is to come is one of the major functions of a responsible press. Telling me a road was closed last week, when the media should have been on top of the Governmentâs planned action and should have reported the week before that a road closure was planned, is bad news coverage. And this happens much more than it should in this country. The various clubs, NGOâs and cultural and religious organizations, as well as Government entities, know well in advance when public activities or services are going to be provided (maybe not so much with the Government, who has a hard time telling its right foot from its left). It is the news mediaâs responsibility to let the public know in advance, not just after, significant services and/or events are to transpire.
The Government may well want to conceal an open forum, for its own reasons; an NGO or private organization may simply not have a sufficiently competent publicity person to get the word out in time. News media need to be reminding those entities to give them advance notice, so as to be able to advise the public, to get the word out in time to allow the public to avail themselves of these opportunities.
I hesitate to say it is laziness on the part of journalists, because I have a great deal of respect for journalism as a profession, but I am not reluctant to prod the media, as employers, to be more active in pursuit of their legitimate responsibilities.