Norazlan Othman, a journalist with the Borneo Bulletin, completed the 2020 International Visitor Leadership Programme (IVLP), organised by the Embassy of the United States (US) in Brunei Darussalam.
He was one of 10 journalists across East-Asia Pacific and South Central Asia regions who participated in the Edward R Murrow Programme for Journalists – Media Responsibility in the Age of Disinformation.
Chargé d’Affaires at the US Embassy in Brunei Darussalam Emily Fleckner presented the certificate.
She said, “I was pleased to hear how much Norazlan took away from this programme despite the challenges of conducting it virtually during a pandemic.
“Learning how to better recognise and combat disinformation will not only benefit him professionally but also his colleagues. This is a key priority for the US here in Brunei and around the world: promoting responsible journalism by sharing best practices.”
The programme was held from February 8 to March 6 via Zoom.
Participants were exposed to current trends and technologies in detecting and combatting disinformation and deceptive news.
It highlighted the importance of investigative journalism, fact-checking, myth-busting in countering misleading information, and demonstrating the serious impact of disinformation campaigns on domestic publics.
Participants also examined strategies designed to encourage greater public awareness of the phenomenon of disinformation. They explored the role of government agencies, NGOs, academia, and traditional and social media outlets in the fight against the proliferation of deceptive media and the dissemination of disinformation. They examined strategies that support responsible and ethical reporting in an increasingly complex information environment.
“It was an amazing, lifetime experience connecting with experienced journalists from the Asia-Pacific and the US in so many time zones, all at one time,” said Norazlan. “We made the best use of this experience to learn best practices, listening to their success stories, and have intellectual discussions on topics including disinformation, misinformation and artificial intelligence.”
The IVLP is one of the US exchange programmes, connecting current and emerging foreign leaders with the American people through short-term programmes to build mutual understanding on a wide range of issues.