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Press Council introduces COVID-19 guidelines

KATHMANDU: The Press Council Nepal has issued guidelines to help media persons and the media houses in the collection and dissemination of news related to Coronavirus or COVID-19. The Public health-related news dissemination guidelines, 2076 includes the precaution to be taken and responsibilities to be assumed in the reporting and dissemination of news related to epidemic including the COVID-19 that has been declared a pandemic.
The guidelines requires media persons to disseminate news related to COVID-19 only after it is verified through official sources or experts and are based on facts, sharing of news, articles or information on the social media should be dignified, true and official while the sharing, likes or retweets of news, information or comments by other users in the social media should also be regarded same as that is published by the media person or media house. Likewise, the media persons and the media house need to maintain confidentiality of people suspected of carrying the virus, not distribute or disseminate materials that could have a negative impact on the infected person, and not make the identity public without the informed consent of the said person and the concerned official source.
Similarly, dissemination of news related to Coronavirus infection should not be done in a way to put the blame on any country, region or community, and also on any infected person while the media should not give space to news that are not officially confirmed, are not true or are meant for propaganda only. Special attention should be paid to ensure that the readers and audience are not pushed towards despair or agitation.
Furthermore, the guidelines require that the journalists and media should not publish the name, address or identity of the relatives or people close to an infected person, should not publish the photo or visual of person who die of the virus, and should immediate publish or air an apology along with correction in case of any mistake or shortcoming in the news related to the pandemic.
The Council will monitor the enforcement of the guidelines and also take necessary action if needed.

Published Date: Monday, March 23rd, 2020 | 10:42 AM

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