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April 24, 2019

Promoting digital literacy and combatting fake news

Thanks to modern technology, virtually everyone has access to information free of charge. The number of people who use digital platforms has also increased. But due to a lack of digital literacy, the number people who properly take advantage of the digital platform for information is still low.
During the period from the beginning of the transition to digital literacy to date, we deliberately carried news and articles in our state-owned media about risks from improper use of digital technology and have educated the people.
To educate the people on digital literacy and to promote proper use of digital technology, talks have been held nationwide. Awareness about digital literacy has been raised to educate everyone, from schoolchildren to adults.
What is happening daily in the world today is that with improper understanding about digital literacy, fake news is spreading for personal interest and harming the interests of others.
To avoid fake news which targets youths with low rationalization power due to weaknesses in reading, the state-run media has covered crimes caused by fake news in the world. Talks on digital literacy are being conducted by the township Information and Public Relations departments of the Ministry of Information at schools nationwide. Knowledge on digital literacy is posted online on the website and Facebook page of the Ministry of Information.
Social media is regarded as a major source of fake news. Many people tend to share fake news without proper vetting.
The Rakhine issue can be considered an issue made with fake news. Thus, authorities concerned made attempts to disseminate true news to invited media personnel from local and foreign agencies. Starting from 19 December, 2016, the State Government granted permission to media personnel, including local and foreign journalists, to gather news in Rakhine State freely. Up to now, there are 18 local media agencies and 35 international news agencies that have collected news in Rakhine state a total of 16 times.
They could meet locals and freely question the people from the IDP camps.
Cooperation is needed to prevent cross-border crimes and the spread of fake news, which can lead to conflicts. The Ministry of Information has made concerted efforts to share true news and avoid online fake news by creating the www.moi.gov.mm website, the MOI Web portal Myanmar on Facebook and Myanmar Digital News on Facebook, in Myanmar and English versions.

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