Beirut, January 18, 2023 (United Nations Information Centre in Beirut) – In collaboration with the United Nations Information Centre in Beirut (UNIC Beirut), Al-Balad Online website launched a weekly segment titled “Al-Balad Barometer.” It will be broadcasted every Friday on Al-Balad Web TV. The segment consists of a news summary aimed at addressing misinformation and disinformation that spread throughout the week and discuss how the media are handling such news, in addition to tapping on the issue of hate speech in an effort to limit its spread in society.
‘Al-Balad Barometer’ mainly aims at combating the scourge of misleading information in light of the massive spread of fake news, especially through electronic media, and to form an informed public opinion and increase the volume and extent of the spread of credible and accurate information. This topic is considered a priority for the UN Information Centre and falls within the framework of the global initiative “Verified” launched by the UN in 2020 following the proliferation of COVID-19.
UNIC Director Margo El-Helou commended this collaboration, stressing the need to combat misinformation that is spreading quickly in the cyberspace, whether through messaging Apps or among users. “Al-Balad Barometer will also help raise awareness about the danger of hate speech spreading among people, especially that it poses a threat to democratic values, social stability, and peace,” she added.
For her part, Mirna Radwan, editor-in-chief of Al-Balad Online, said that the freedom of speech and the responsibility of the press are inseparable and complementary. Free media has a responsibility towards society in uncovering the truth and combating the spread of fake news and other issues that might instigate sectarian strife or stir hatred among communities. “I thank UNIC Beirut Director for her trust in our website and hope to collaborate at all levels,” she added.
To watch the segment, visit Al-Balad Online website and social media pages on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter @albaladonline.