Speakers highlight pros and cons of social media

LAHORE: Speakers at a seminar said social media trolls are busy discrediting and putting women down, and acknowledged vulnerability of all others owing to lack of online protection.

`Truth filters should be placed on social media, suggested columnist and author Aisha Sarwari while speaking in a session on `The Role of Social Media` at Asma JahangirConference.

She said the existing laws representedhow men saw the world.

Columnist and TV show host Wusatullah Khan said technology was a twoedged sword and the government used it to `digitally chain` individuals carrying a mobile phone.

He urged the government to inform journalists and other people why they were being punished before penalising them. `The allpowerful governments must heed to this innocent demand,`he urged.

Novelist and journalist Muhammad Hanif saidthe youth needed to be guided on how to tweet.

He pointed out of ficials of security institutions for tweeting as late as 3am, saying: `We should take a brake some time.

Freedom Network Executive Director Iqbal Khattak said more and more journalists being censored on mainstream media were now shifting tosocialmediaandnamed Talat Hussain, Matiullah Jan and Rauf Klasra.

`The information on social media channels ofjournalists is not available on main-stream media,` he added.

Mr Khattak stressed that journalists should use virtual private network to stay safe. `If you are not digitally safe, you compromise your physical safety,` he said. `Online is the future.

Netherlands Human Rights Ambassador Dr Bahia Tahzib-Lie acknowledged the good work of digital safety training to journalists in Pakistan.

`We should stand up for journalists and create more safe spaces.