How does self-regulation of the media work?

Published on  |  Modified on

KINIGUIDE | The maelstrom The Star currently finds itself in over its controversial front page on May 27, has reignited concerns that government reprisals are undermining the press freedom in Malaysia.

Accused of portraying Muslims as terrorists, the English daily has been accused of sedition and inciting religious disharmony, and faces the possibility of having their printing license revoked - a notion which critics say would be an overreaction by the government.

This has revived calls for the media to police itself, instead of having the government watching over it.

What is media self-regulation?

Media self-regulation is a mechanism by which an independent body that includes the press itself, governs the news industry through adherence to a code of ethics.

These governing bodies will then taken action any news organisation or journalist who violates the code.

This is widely practiced in the West while closer to home, countries such as Indonesia, Myanmar, India and Hong Kong have formed press councils to fulfill this role...