Policy and Public Affairs Officer Sophie Malleson shares her thoughts on discussions at our Cardiff Roadshow on fake news, the challenges of digital, and supporting accurate reporting.
The IPSO Roadshow took place in Cardiff on Tuesday evening at Cardiff University’s brand new School of Journalism, Media and Culture. The school is situated within throwing distance of Media Wales, BBC Cymru and ITV Wales, and following the opening of a new building and studio facilities, it is easy to see why the university is well-known as one of the UK’s leading institutions for students of journalism.
Media professionals, students and the public took part in an evening of fascinating debate and discussion around the theme ‘Whose News do you Trust?’ Attendees got to hear views from a variety of different perspectives and this certainly resulted in some hearty debate!
We were joined by Emma Meese of the Centre for Community Journalism, who offered expertise on the UK’s local, hyper-local and community news sector. Bethan Sayed AM, a member of the Welsh Assembly, shared her thoughts on trust and the media from a politician’s perspective. Paul Rowland, the Editor-in-Chief of Media Wales and editor of Wales Online, spoke about his experiences as a senior leader in some of the nation’s most well-read and most-clicked-on publications. Finally, IPSO’s Chief Executive, Matt Tee, commented on a regulator’s role in supporting accurate, trustworthy news.
Across a range of perspectives, the speakers raised many of the same concerns, challenges and difficulties around trust in the press. The risks and dangers of ‘fake news’ came up a great deal, with Paul Rowland touching upon how false accusations of fake news or ‘clickbait’ can erode trust in a legitimate and edited news products.
Discussing of the practical challenges of publishing accurate digital news in a fast-paced 24-hour news cycle, Emma Meese spoke of her experiences working in the early days of digital news as publishers were developing their digital news capabilities. Matt Tee similarly outlined some of the changes to the news landscape over the breadth of his career, pointing out that regulation must be alert and responsive to the changing news landscape.
Bethan Sayed AM paid tribute to the fundamentally important work that journalists do across the board, but expressed the view that stories originating from the Welsh Assembly are not always reported as well as they could be. Certainly, we can all agree that journalists equipped with the in-depth knowledge of complex political institutions are in the best position to adequately scrutinise the actions and decisions of those in positions of power and best serve the public with the information on the issues that affect them.
You can watch the Facebook Live stream of the event here.
We hope to run more events like this next year, so watch this space for our next events.