UAE Media Forum discusses developing the media system to keep pace with the future trends of the country – the Emirates – news and reports

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2021-05-07T07:57:29+00:00
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UAE Media Forum discusses developing the media system to keep pace with the future trends of the country – the Emirates – news and reports

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The sixth Emirati Media Forum, organized by the Dubai Press Club, was concluded in Dubai yesterday evening, with direct attendance at its headquarters in Central One, Dubai World Trade Center, with the participation of a group of Emirati media leaders, editors-in-chief of local newspapers, writers, thinkers and media figures in the UAE. The attendees discussed a number of important topics related to the prospects for developing the media sector at a time when the country is preparing to enter a new stage in its development process over the next 50 years, in line with the vision of the wise leadership and its aspirations for the role of local media in supporting development efforts in pursuit of the highest levels Distinction, so that the United Arab Emirates will always be the model and example for leading countries in laying the foundations for a future that provides all the elements for progress and prosperity for their people.

Measures

In an organizational environment characterized by maintaining the application of precautionary and preventive measures in a precise manner, the discussion was frank and constructive, and the dialogue was characterized by a real desire on the part of all participants to make a qualitative leap in the Emirati media sector, where the attendees discussed a number of important issues related to the most prominent challenges that the sector is currently facing. And the visions and ideas that the attendees contributed to in order to upgrade the media work system in light of a new strategy that guarantees all its institutions the opportunity to expand their participation in supporting the comprehensive development process in the country and to continue its role as a mirror that reflects the aspirations of society and sheds light on the most important development paths and the achievements they produce in the interest of society.

In the first of the three sessions included in the forum’s agenda, under the title “Emirati Media in Front of Future Questions”, the attendees agreed on the necessity of developing an integrated media strategy that would ensure coordination and unification of media work efforts and enhance its ability to keep pace with the achievements and aspirations of the UAE. The discussion began with a question directed by the moderators of the session to His Excellency Mona Ghanem Al Marri, President of the Dubai Press Club, on whether the Emirati media has a clear business strategy that lives up to the ambitions and achievements of the state and is able to keep pace with its vision for the future and the huge achievements it aspires to achieve in it.

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Media leaders during the forum sessions

Full transparency

Mona Al-Marri began her response by stressing the importance of adhering to full transparency and adopting a frank critical approach in discussing the media reality in all its dimensions as a basic requirement in any effort aimed at upgrading the level and performance of the national media that has achieved a lot of progress in terms of technology and infrastructure thanks to government investment and strong support for the sector at the local levels. And federal and allocate huge financial budgets to support its continuous development.

Al-Marri considered that the Emirati media lacks a clear and integrated national strategy, considering that what the sector is currently witnessing is sporadic efforts that do not have an overarching framework or a comprehensive and unified format at the state level, and this is not limited to offices and media institutions, but also includes government communication offices and communication departments. Institutional with government agencies.

Mona Al-Marri identified 4 main development points for the local media, on top of which is the lack of the required coordination and integration necessary to unify the efforts made by the various media bodies at all levels, explaining that this reality leads to dispersion of efforts and weakens performance, which confirms the need for effective mechanisms for comprehensive coordination within the strategy A national media center is the hub for media work.

She indicated that the second axis that needs development in the Emirati media system is the insufficient investment in the human cadre, which the wise leadership gives an absolute priority, and that the country enjoys an abundance of national and Arab talents and experiences as it is a center of attraction for minds and qualified human cadres in various sectors and fields of All over the world.

She explained that investing in the development of national cadres does not necessarily mean direct traditional employment, but rather includes empowering talented and creative Emirati owners of emerging and small companies by awarding them contracts that enhance their business and support their success in the world of entrepreneurship, and pointed out in this context that the Dubai Government Media Office took the initiative with The beginning of the “Covid-19” pandemic, to contracting with talented Emirati youth in the field of freelance work (Freelance) in a variety of media disciplines, in order to support media coverage of the huge government efforts and operations that were launched to confront the repercussions of the pandemic.

The president of the Dubai Press Club pointed out that supporting this group of young people is absolutely necessary and in need of a clear plan to support them locally and federally, especially with the diversity of business leaders’ specializations that include marketing, graphics design, digital advertising and others, and therefore their support is in the framework of developing the media industry as well, which is not what It is achieved as desired after.

As for the third axis of development, according to Mona Al-Marri, it is embodied in the necessity to renew the content, as the local media does not think completely outside the box and is still limited within the frameworks of official press releases issued by media offices and institutional communication departments at government agencies, noting that the renewal of media content remains without Hope level.

Al-Marri said: The repercussions of the pandemic have negatively affected many media experiences and talents in the region, and in light of the prestigious position the state enjoys for Arab youth as a land of opportunities and dreams, it is imperative that the Emirati media embrace such talented people and provide appropriate opportunities to employ Their new ideas and talents in the best way to enhance the power of the UAE media at the regional level.

In response to a question about mechanisms to address these challenges and build the strategy required for the media, Mona Al-Marri stressed the need to establish a constructive internal media dialogue that analyzes the reality and prospects of the sector and develops practical and objective solutions, stressing the need to involve young people in this dialogue and listen to their voice and listen to their ideas in a way that provides the required opportunities to benefit from them. On the ground, in conjunction with investing in minds, developing talent, and not focusing only on investing in digital platforms, but rather preparing young cadres who are able to deal with these media in the best way and keep up with their developments.

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Mohammed Al-Raisi

Bold lines

Commenting on the need for an integrated Emirati media strategy, Mona Bousamra, the responsible editor-in-chief of Al Bayan newspaper, explained that the past years have witnessed many strategic media meetings at the state level, and brainstorming sessions for discussion during which plans and initiatives and strategies were prepared at an advanced level. , Indicating that these outputs today are still locked up.

Mona Bousamra speaking during the session in the presence of Mona Al-Marri

She emphasized that young people actively participated in these social societies, and practical ideas were presented that dealt with various fields of media work, including the academic aspect, and various proposals and visions for the future were discussed, but these efforts did not translate into tangible results.

Comprehensive strategy

In turn, Dr. Hessa Lootah pointed out that the absence of a comprehensive strategy leads to a state of confusion in the media work, and from here highlights the importance of developing a strategy that includes the main objectives and specifies the practical implementation mechanisms and what is actually hoped for by the media in what constitutes broad lines for media institutions in the state, both government and private. Both.

Lootah pointed out that the state has made progress in many fields, but the UAE media still faces many challenges, noting that the state is exposed to external media campaigns that are not answered as required, and called for evaluating the work of media institutions that lack specific mechanisms for evaluating performance and media content. Similar to the institutions operating in other sectors, stressing the need to put in place the necessary controls and evaluation frameworks at this particular stage.

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Sami Al Riyami

Crossroads

For his part, Mohammed Al Hammadi, President of the Emirates Journalists Association, stressed that the Emirati media stands at a crossroads and needs a clear and guided truth compass, pointing out that the pandemic, despite the challenges it brought, also carried many lessons learned for all, and the media was no exception. The wise leadership’s constant affirmation that challenges create opportunities, which necessitates the lessons and challenges of the pandemic.

He explained that the local media has taken the initiative to change many of its mechanisms, tools, and method of work to keep pace with the changes and challenges, indicating that the talk about the pandemic and the fifth generation network are two sides of the same coin, especially since the discussion of the fifth generation network has emerged strongly since the start of the global health crisis, and indicated that the media by the year 2015 2024 will be completely different with the operation of the fifth generation network, what will bring about a wide shift in communication and communication tools and platforms, and thus will directly affect the media and the media product, there are expectations that the production hall, montage and editing will all be available in anyone’s pocket via a smartphone, and thus it will be There is a new and different generation of media professionals as well as influencers, and hence the readiness of the Emirati media and media institutions for this new future must be discussed, and we must move more quickly to prepare for it.

Al-Hammadi pointed out that the sector, with the testimony of media leaders, is still lagging behind compared to the rest of the sectors in the country, and added: We, as media professionals, do not accept that, as the tools exist and the plans and strategies that were developed in previous meetings must be activated.

Media readiness

In response to a question about the readiness of local media for the future, Hamad Al-Kaabi, editor-in-chief of Al-Ittihad newspaper, stressed the need to define what is required of the media, pointing out that there are differences in the ability to measure performance indicators in various fields of government work compared to the media sector.

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Hamad Al Kaabi

He added: “It is necessary that the media not be a mere reaction, but rather it should initiate innovation and provide content that befits the state’s achievements and create a clear strategy and specific criteria, but on the other hand, the success that the country has achieved in confronting the Coronavirus has had an important role for the media, especially in relation to Awareness efforts that led to a high demand for vaccination.

He pointed out that the media as a profession will still exist in the future, but its tools must be developed and kept abreast, and that young people should be qualified to deal with new media.

The private sector model

In turn, Raed Barqawi, executive editor-in-chief of Al-Khaleej newspaper, said that government institutions constitute approximately 75% of media institutions, and called for their transformation into the private sector with limited government support, indicating that there is no longer a fully governmental media in the world, calling He pointed to the necessity of leaving the traditional framework and transforming them into private commercial and profitable institutions that may need material support in their early stages, indicating that creativity comes mainly from the private sector, including the media.

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Raed Barqawi

He pointed out that the UAE depends on a free economy and avoids reliance on the government, with an emphasis on the importance of the partnership between the government sector and the private sector.

In light of the maturity of the Emirati media, Barqawi believed that there was no need for daily guidance and supervision similar to the role played by the National Media Council, but he stressed the need for young energies in light of the development of tools and means.

He added: “Does our voice reach the world? Absolutely not. We are addressing ourselves, and the limits of the Emirati media may reach the Arab countries, but our voice does not reach the outside, as the focus is mainly on Arabic content, so that the local English newspapers mainly address the inside.

Direct communication

For his part, Mustafa Al-Zarouni, Editor-in-Chief of Emirati Affairs at Al Khaleej Times, indicated that there are 13 newspapers in the UAE, 8 of which are private, and pointed out that most government agencies do not allow journalists to enter and communicate directly, stressing the evaluation of the journalist’s work and the exclusive and private content and not relying on Canned press releases.

He emphasized that the absence of a media strategy has resulted in the public relations departments in many government agencies not interacting with media professionals’ inquiries to clarify the necessary information to the public, as society needs information, and here the responsibility lies not only with the media, but on government departments concerned with public affairs.

He called for holding government agencies to account that do not deal transparently with the media, and also called on the press to highlight the lack of cooperation by any party regarding any news of public opinion.

Attracting talent

In turn, Sarah Al-Jarman, Director of Public Channels in the Radio and Television Sector and Director of Dubai TV, said: There is a weakness in the levels of attracting and developing talent in our local media, and there is a commitment to traditional methods of working away from thinking outside the box, which limits the success of our local media.

To follow other details; Read:

Media leaders: our national media is supportive in times of crisis

Perceptions for developing a media strategy during crises

Contributions of influencers and hopes of communication platforms on a discussion table

Giving young people an opportunity to show their potential in entertainment content

Communicating correct information to society is a huge responsibility

Forum participants review local media issues

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