PH print media ‘in trouble’ due to COVID-19 pandemic: group
MANILA – The country’s print media are “in trouble” due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has forced newspapers to downsize and migrate online, the Philippine Press Institute (PPI) said Thursday.
At least 12 community newspapers have “gone out of business” and made the switch to the Internet, according to PPI executive director Ariel Sebellino.
Sebellino stressed the importance of independent and controlled information, because “the public must understand where the stories are coming from.”
“Critical journalism, the public should understand, should question the status quo and government statements. We know that any official statement from a government agency must be challenged for disinformationâ¦ they must be verified,” he said. -he declares.
The downsizing of the Philippine Daily Inquirer by offering its staff early retirement sends a “chilling effect” to news outlets as the pandemic affects even media giants, according to Sebellino.
âFor a big newspaper like Inquirer to do this, I think it gives a strong signal to other news agenciesâ¦,â he said.
“It probably makes the public, their customers, their readers, feel that the pandemic is so huge that it is hampering the normalcy of operations for a major newspaper like the Philippine Daily Inquirer.”
Sebellino said news agencies need to think “of creative ways to keep their operations going, because things will never be the same again.”
“I think there must be other opportunities to strengthen the print platform. This means that online printing and publishing will have to go hand in hand.”
âBig newspapers in urban centers can probably help smaller ones outside urban centers and we are thinking of community involvement. We are seeing dynamism in the economy that should start locally first.
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