Jaitley urges bureaucrats to use social media effectively

Finance minister Arun Jaitley, who also holds the information & broadcasting portfolio, today said the future belongs to the digital media because of its wide reach.

He asked government officials dealing with information dissemination to package data and facts according to contemporary trends and media requirements.

Inaugurating a workshop for top bureaucrats in Delhi on `Streamlining government communication`, the minister said the present environment offers a tremendous opportunity to stakeholders in the government to disseminate credible, factual, relevant and reader-friendly information.

"As technology influences change in the communication landscape, the future belonged to the digital media due to its reach, scale, variety and accessibility," Jaitley said.

He said that technology was also impacting the nature of information dissemination in view of changes taking place globally across platforms.

The minister said the nature and character of news dissemination had undergone change due to the challenges thrown up by 24x7 television news.

"The camera today has become the prime mover for defining content and setting the agenda, impacting the flow of news," he said.

Jaitley also referred to the need for using social media tools such as Twitter, Blogs, Facebook to enhance the reach of government communication.

The minister said a large constituency existed which wanted authentic and credible information from the government.

He called upon the participants "to package data, facts and information keeping in mind contemporary tools and trends, media requirements and content for opinion makers and analysts in the media space".

Jaitley said that website platforms were an important medium to address concerns of stakeholders and asked various departments to optimally utilise their websites to place accurate and credible information.

"The content of the website needed to be in a language which was easy to read and understand," Jaitley, adding that the government departments needed to reach out to a wider assembly of people including the civil society.

He said that the media needed to take a comprehensive view of the decision-making process while highlighting the decisions taken by the government.

Organised by the Press Information Bureau (PIB) under the aegis of information & broadcasting ministry, the one-day workshop was attended by senior PIB officials along with private secretaries to ministers.