October is perhaps a month of concern for media, particularly about the ethics.
First, Sing Pao Daily News continued to delay paying its staff. The newspaper slashed 30 staff in late October. We will continue to monitor the incident with hopes that the newspaper would be able to secure new capital for its staff, who, despite difficult working environment, still demonstrated professionalism. An example of this was a recent exclusive report relating to a certain apparel chain that prompted the police for immediate action.
Artist Lydia Shum Din Ha’s (Fei Fei) hospitalisation was a test for media ethics. We could understand why this news drew so many media representatives waiting outside the hospital, but we should not in any way delay the process of saving life. Therefore, we issued a press statement to pledge for self-discipline, and we noted some improvements afterwards. A little more consideration among our photographers and cameramen could help us all to get the best shots while respecting the rights of a patient.
In another incident, our ethics committee ruled against a report by Hong Kong Daily News, which gave unnecessary details on a story on incest. We hope news practitioners should strive for the public rights to know, while not building their case against the misfortune of victims. We followed this up with Hong Kong Daily News, which replied in letter that it will review with its court reporter.
October was not a month just of heavy news. Our JA Cup proudly enters its 23rd year. I am here to cheer for all teams, and ask you to join me in supporting the players every Saturday morning until next January.
Last but not least, our publication, The Journalist, is on schedule to be distributed by the end of November. Our cover story will be on election, and we hope it could be your reference guide for the upcoming Legco by-election and the Taiwan election next year. We plan to publish the newsletter every quarter. If you have any ideas or articles, please let us know or simply write to us.
Fan Ho Tsai