The Editor's Council yesterday called upon the government to exempt online editions of newspapers from registering as online news outlets.
“The Press Information Department has started on November 9 the registration of online media. It said that the online editions of print newspapers are also to be registered. We think it is not logical,” said a statement.
The statement signed by the Editor's Council President Golam Sarwar and General Secretary Mahfuz Anam said the print newspapers have already been registered and were running under the Printing Presses and Publications Act (Declaration and Registration) of 1973.
Like those across the world, these newspapers in Bangladesh have their online editions in the context of global development of publications and communications technology.
These online editions were inseparable part of the newspapers, and so should be run under the existing Printing Presses and Publication Act, the statement said.
The readers at home and abroad get news of the country fast from these online editions, it said.
“So, we think the online editions of the newspapers should be kept out of the online media registration process,” the statement read.
The Editor's Council issued the statement as the Ministry of Information published a draft of the online policy in its website on August 6.
The draft policy spoke of operating online media through the national broadcasting commission, but the Press Information Department has begun the activities of registering online media, and the last date of applying for registration has been set to December 15.