VITEBSK, 23 June (BelTA) – The information warfare continues, it is not subsiding, Belarus' Information Minister Vladimir Pertsov told journalists at the 2nd forum of Belarus' media community “Regional Media in the Digital Space: Best Practices, Problems, Prospects”, BelTA has learned.
“What are we going to discuss today? There are many issues to be raised. First of all, how to grow our audience and increase the presence of state-run media outlets in the new media environment. This is a very frequent question that is brought up during my visits to numerous editorial offices of the regional media. Some have already gone a long way to do it, some have established a foothold in social media, on various channels like Telegram and Viber. For some, this is just the beginning of this journey. How to operate in unfriendly digital environments today? Masks have been removed, the information warfare is on. Our opponents do not hesitate to block our channels without legal grounds, limit the external gateway, and remove Telegram channels. The content of the messenger was deleted, which we had never experienced before. And this is also a new challenge that we have to live with,” Vladimir Pertsov said.
The minister emphasized that the media should respond to the problems of local residents. “Local media outlets should not just articulate problems, they should help resolve them. If you do this, you will be a useful communication channel for your readers, viewers, listeners, and authorities, for the country as a whole. We closely analyze the work of regional media. If certain problems are raised in chats, other communication channels of your region, but are not covered by your publication, we assume that your media outlet is ineffective and unpopular. By the end of summer we should take stock of the situation and take the necessary steps to transform the regional media,” he noted.
“It is no secret that the information warfare continues. It is not subsiding. They will not leave us alone. We have difficult years ahead, and our media should become truly effective and popular,” Vladimir Pertsov added.
For the second year in a row, the forum brings together the best representatives of the country's media community. It offers a platform to exchange views and generate new ideas, helps consolidate the efforts of people representing various fields of expertise, with an ultimate goal to promote regional media taking into account digitalization processes, audience requests, and the need to effectively promote the state information product in all environments.
The event seeks to help media representatives to improve their competences, forge new contacts, learn to work in a convergence environment, and create a uniform media community in Belarus in a bid to develop and improve the national information space. Taking part in the forum are heads of state-run central and regional mass media outlets, experts in the field of communications, ideologists, and bloggers.
The forum will conclude with a solemn ceremony to award winners of the 18th edition of the Golden Letter competition.
The forum was organized by the Information Ministry with the assistance of the Vitebsk Oblast Executive Committee.