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Saturday, October 23, 2021

“Profession: journalist. Debate” on TVN24. Live

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How to be a journalist in a world full of fake news? The guests of the Sunday debate “Profession: journalist” on TVN24 talked about the challenges and threats of modern journalism, as well as the role of free media. The program was led by Radomir Wit. This is how we reported on the debate.

The debate was attended by: Karolina Kowalska (“Rzeczpospolita”), Anton Ambroziak (OKO.press), Gabriela Sieczkowska (Konkret24) and Patryk Michalski (Wirtualna Polska), as well as students of journalism.

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  • The debate is over. Thank you for your attention.

  • Sieczkowska: Experts see one solution. Education in schools is important, but also the education of our readers who will not return to school. There are organizations that train recipients of information, how to recognize this disinformation, how not to duplicate it, and how to react to it.

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    Gabriela Sieczkowska answers the question whether it is possible for reliable information to ultimately win over disinformation: It is up to us journalists and us to consumers of information. Fighting disinformation from a verification perspective is the fight against windmills. We will never eliminate this disinformation.

  • Maja Potrykus about her future in journalism: There are many things to change and to change something you have to act and that’s a great motivation.

  • Marta Wójcik: To be professional, journalists should control the authorities and act in the public interest. Unfortunately, they often become participants in this political game, which is a big threat to journalism.

  • Julia Jachimowicz: Journalists should be sensitive to human problems. The trick is for them to raise issues that are socially important, and that this would carry a higher goal.

  • Jonasz Błajet: What is worth remembering is that sometimes the source is in a man who may be next to us. People are key in everything and we, as journalists, should be next to people. Not to make a thesis, but to let him express himself.

  • Students answer the question about the quality of journalistic work.

  • Michalski: Research shows politicians that they can gain votes by dividing society. They pose a threat regardless of the situation of LGBT people in Poland. Homophobia in Poland is not punished, and what some politicians say is scandalous and cannot be agreed.

  • Patryk Michalski on the situation in Hungary: This situation is an inspiration for Polish politicians. Although this freedom is limited step by step, it is happening before our eyes. What politicians say is often party gibberish, and we are to separate party gibberish from information.

  • There is a question about the disappearance of free media in the world.

  • Karolina Kowalska: Today we have no officials, only politicians. If our bosses would tell us to lie, we say thank you, we don’t work anymore. On the other hand, these people often found their way to these offices for acquaintances and they do everything to stay there.

  • Michalski: Politicians are more and more willing to replace officials with people who will implement the guidelines resulting from the party’s messages. The people who can guarantee that we will obtain information would be a cadre of clerks who perform their tasks, regardless of who is in charge.

  • The question is whether it happens that politicians or officials lie.

  • Marta Wójcik: The time pressure is very visible. All information reaches us at the moment. Journalists should not succumb to time pressure and verify information. The public is becoming more and more aware that reliable information takes a while.

  • Michalski: You have to check, you have to verify and when we are 100% sure, we can publish this information.

  • Patryk Michalski: You have to stick to the rules that we all know.

  • The question is whether journalists should focus on verifying information or rushing to provide information.

  • Anton Ambroziak: We have to control politicians, look at their hands, but we certainly should not drink what they say to us. At OKO.press, we try to show stories with a face, and not duplicate messages.

  • Michalski: It’s easier for a politician to say that we are against migration, which may be illegal. Talking about migration rather than refugees makes it easier for them to justify themselves.

  • Patryk Michalski: By definition, human rights are inalienable.

  • Anton Ambroziak: The fact that the policemen manage to reduce human rights to something that can be negotiated is because we are not educated in this context. Human rights are not something negotiable.

  • Karolina Kowalska: We must repeat that this is not the subject of the fair, but human rights. The more they reduce human rights to an ideology, the more we have to say that they are not.

  • The question is what journalists should do when human rights topics are drawn into political debate.

  • Patryk Michalski: It is not like we came here today and we feel sorry for the fact that politicians do not want to provide us with information. I guarantee that we will do our best to find this information. For our readers, we verify this information and it is not the case that refusing to provide information means the end of our work. Sometimes it’s just the beginning.

  • Anton Ambroziak: Social media promotes everything that is fast, expressive, scandalous, and therefore very emotional. Not all press releases have this value, but fake news has it, and that’s why they click through faster.

  • Karolina Kowalska: Tribes appeared through social media. They have their media, their bubble, and they don’t need objective media.

  • Gabriela Sieczkowska about fact-checking: We start with the search engine. We check whether this information is in other sources, or whether it is in a source that can be considered reliable. Usually, untrue information is embedded in reality, but some important aspect of it has been completely changed.

  • Maja Potrykus, University of Gdańsk: The young generation uses social media much more often. Unfortunately, we can often find fake news there.

  • Marta Wójcik, University of Warsaw: It is important, especially in the era of fake news, to check information.

  • Jonasz Błajet: Social media is the main source of information for my friends. We can find sites that have verified information, but also sites that duplicate fake news.

  • Julia Jachimowicz, Jagiellonian University: Social media play a very important role. Users can verify the information given.

  • Journalism students answer the question about reaching out to information.

  • Patryk Michalski: It is not a goodwill of ministries or offices. It is their duty. The rulers use the pandemic to explain why they do not answer journalists’ questions.

  • Gabriela Sieczkowska: Sometimes we get information right away, sometimes we wait long weeks for it. It depends on how optimistic they are for the ministry. It’s hard to deal with questions, but we manage to get most of the answers.

  • Anton Ambroziak: I repeatedly write inquiries to the spokeswoman for the Ministry of Education and I don’t get an answer. I was unsubscribed from the official telephone and e-mail lists. He is not informed when the press conference is going to be.

  • Kowalska: If I send a question, I will get the answer, but the Ministry of Health chooses editorial offices to whom it will give exclusive materials and interviews. For quite a long time, I asked for an interview with the minister of health. I did not live to see it.

  • Karolina Kowalska: Two ministries do not talk to us, because we do not write well, we do not praise.

  • Michalski: The National Broadcasting Council does it because it can. This body is made up of people who did not get there because of their competences just because they are trusted people of the ruling party.

  • Michalski: It is absolutely offensive to journalists, because we are not journalists who favor one or the other ruling party.

  • Patryk Michalski: It is certain that after TVN24 it will be time for all other media. It is about silencing media that are critical and not “ours”.

  • Anton Ambroziak: It is a strategy of extinguishing those information centers that are critical of the government. It starts with TVN24, and then it will be time for other editorial offices.

  • Kowalska: If TVN24 is not available, then there will be no other media and we will not know anything.

  • Karolina Kowalska: There is no doubt that the license is not granted to silence a station that is objective, that says things that the government does not want to hear. It is as clear as the sun to me.

  • The question is asked about the license for TVN24, which ends in a week – September 26.

  • The guests of the debate are: Karolina Kowalska (“Rzeczpospolita”), Anton Ambroziak (OKO.press), Gabriela Sieczkowska (Konkret24) and Patryk Michalski (Wirtualna Polska), as well as journalism students.

  • The debate began on TVN24.



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