Dubai: The speaker at the first session of the Kuwaiti-Emirati Media Forum, titled “Journalism: between professionalism and national responsibility”, said that one of the dangers of journalism, is when people use it to get back at each other and settle scores.
Faisal Al Qenai, Secretary of the Kuwait Journalism Association, said that responsibility and an obligation to telling the truth are what make a journalist professional, not his ability to bribe someone, to get information in the wrong way to harm an opponent and get an exclusive story.
The two-day forum was inaugurated yesterday by Shaikh Maktoum Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, It was organised by the Journalist Association of the UAE, Kuwait Journalist Association and Dubai Press Club.
The forum was organised as part of Kuwait’s National day and Liberation Day celebrations, which fall on February 25 and February 26, respectively. Mansour Al Ajami, general coordinator of the forum, said that it was a pleasure to share their celebrations with their Emirati brothers and sisters.
After welcome speeches, there was a screening of a short movie where a Kuwaiti teacher poetically tells the story of the UAE and Shaikh Zayed, to his Kuwaiti students.
The second day of the forum will include a poetry night at 7.30pm, with four poets, Khalid Al Mohsen and Atta Allah Farhan, from Kuwait, and Hussain Bin Sodah and Awad Bin Jasoum, from the UAE.
Speakers at the first session warned against the dangers of unsourced “news” that circulates on social media.
Waleed Al Nesf, Editor in Chief of Kuwaiti Al Qabbas newspaper, said that he believes that national responsibility will move from the classical media, such as newspapers and television, to social media, as it has a bigger impact on people.
He said that some officials thought that classical media was a nuisance but he noted that classical media is more merciful than social media.
There were also stalls from various ministries and organisations in Kuwait at the Forum, with catalogues and brochures.
In an address made on behalf of the UAE Journalists Association, Mona Abou Samra, Secretary General of the Association, expressed on behalf of Emirati and Kuwaiti journalists her heartfelt thanks to Shaikh Maktoum for sponsoring and attending the forum.
She stressed that the attention given by the wise leadership to the media and journalists encourages continuous development in this vital sector. Mona said that this helps develop capabilities in the sector in line with the UAE’s vision and the nation’s continuous efforts to provide local and foreign media agencies in the country with the best possible work environment as well as the opportunity to carry out their role and convey their message in the most ideal way possible.
Mona welcomed Kuwaiti journalists participating in the forum, and expressed her hope that the event would help expand avenues of cooperation between journalists from both countries. She reaffirmed that this forum acts as a platform for exchanging ideas and discussing matters of interest and challenges pertaining to their vocation.
Mohammad Yousuf, Chairman of the UAE Journalists Association, and Faisal Al Qenai, Secretary General of the Kuwaiti Journalists Association, presented Shaikh Maktoum with a commemorative gift on the occasion.