Should Media be Blamed for Alleged Celebrities Porn Videos?


MEDAN,  KOMPAS.com – The executive director of the Consumers’ Protection and Advocacy Institute (LAPK) has called for a halt to  media reports on a pornographic video purportedly involving a few popular celebrities,  citing their negative impact on the younger generation.  Media coverage of the case is not educative and of low grade in terms of quality, Farid Wajdi, the LPAK director, said here Wednesday.
He said he was “appalled and concerned” about the way print and electronic media were reporting on the case. Apart from the question of whether the persons shown in the video really were the suspected artists,  he believed the media coverage of the case so far was having a negative impact on the younger generation.

Because of their strong curiosity, the  younger generation were likely to be enticed to get hold of the video by the media reports, he said. He said this was true based upon the number of people looking for illegal copies of the video sold by street vendors.

The  mass media should have been more aware of its role as a social watchdog and education agent and also its influence on the community, the LAPK executive said. He hoped mass media would not only seek ratings and profits, adding sensational coverage of the case would only increase distribution of low-quality information such as about sex scandals, violence and anarchic actions so far.

He said mass media should exercise self-censorship. “Reporting the story for a social control purpose is indeed the mass media’s obligation but it will not be good if they only exposed the pornographic part of it,” he said. “Law enforcement agencies must prepare legal means to prevent its recurrence.”

Vice president Boediono had also expressed concern over the spread of the case.  “The vice president is  concerned over the spread of the pornographic video,” Education Minister M Nuh said to newsmen at the vice presidential palace in Jakarta on Wednesday after a meeting of the education committee led by the vice president and attended by several cabinet ministers.

Nuh said the vice president gave serious attention to the case and had expressed his deep concern over it. He said the vice president reminded about the importance of national character building.

An Islamic leader meanwhile said that the emergence of the case was the logical consequence of modernization, globalization and cultural liberalization in Indonesia.  Din Sjamsuddin, chief of the Muhammadiyah organization, said in Surabaya, East Java, on Wednesday that the phenomena would keep appearing in the country not only involving celebrities or popular figures but also common people.

In view of that he urged the government not to remain idle with regard to it. To all Moslems in the country he appealed to defend themselves against assaults from western cultures.

“It is the full responsibility of the state through the ministry of communications and information to oversee it,” he said after speaking at the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Indonesian Islamic Student Movement (PMII).

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