Jom Media has come under scrutiny following a POFMA order for three articles published in their segment, ‘Singapore This Week‘. They voiced concerns over the interpretation of the order, particularly in how it was applied to their content.
One of the contentious points raised by Jom was regarding a statement in their publication. While conceding that this particular statement could have benefited from additional context from the full remarks of the politician involved, they stands firm in their stance on the other two statements. These, according to Jom, neither implied governmental corruption nor suggested that the government was responsible for blocking an Instagram post, contrary to the court’s determination.
As Jom argues, the law, intended to correct factual inaccuracies, is being overextended to include interpretations and opinions, potentially diminishing its effectiveness and transforming it into a political instrument. The concern is that if journalism is reduced to merely echoing official government statements, verbatim, it could significantly reduce critical thinking (which is already at a low level in Singapore) and further diminish any public discourse.
Jom is right in advocating for a more democratic approach to establishing truth in journalism. This approach would involve moving away from granting politicians sole authority over determining facts, and instead fostering a more inclusive and critical environment.
Uphold the truth, but in a manner that respects diverse perspectives and maintains the integrity of journalism.