Draft National Online Media Guideline-2017 gets cabinet nod

Staff Correspondent | Update:

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Draft National Online Media Guideline-2017 gets cabinet nod

Staff Correspondent

The cabinet on Monday gave the go-ahead to the draft National Online Media Guideline-2017, making mandatory the registration of online-based media outlets with the proposed Broadcast Commission.

The information ministry will discharge the functions of the Broadcast Commission until the commission is set up.

The draft guideline also stipulates that the online version of a newspaper does not require the registration.

The cabinet meeting was held in parliamentary complex with prime minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair. Cabinet secretary Md Shafiul Alam briefed newsmen at Bangladesh Secretariat about the outcome of the meeting.

The cabinet secretary said newspapers registered under the Printing Presses and Publication (Declaration and Registration) Act 1973 would not require the registration again for their online versions.

But, the newspaper authorities should inform the commission about its online version and will have to pay the registration fees, he added.

He said the commission will fix the registration fees.

The cabinet secretary said the guideline has been drafted in light with the National Broadcast Policy.

He said there are some 1,800 online media outlets in the country now and some of them were given approval.
UNB adds: Besides, the commission will make recommendations to the government for giving licences to television, radio, internet TV or other digital broadcast stations and it will issue licences upon the government's approval.

Alam said the commission could issue show cause notice, initiate investigation, recommend to the government for further proceedings against online media outlets if they broadcast something in violation of the National Broadcast Policy-2014.

On its own, the commission will be able to take action against online media outlets if it believes that they have violated the code of conduct and breached discipline, he said.

The commission will also be given the authority to take measures against a online media outlet if any content poses a threat to security, territorial integrity, peace, public order and unity of the country or if it is vulgar, false and malicious or if the content is against the spirit of the liberation war and distorts national history and heritage.

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