Chief Editor of Ming Pao Lectures on Responsible Journalism at SGI-Hong Kong Center
On December 1, 2006, SGI-Hong Kong sponsored a lecture by Paul K. B. Cheung, chief editor of Ming Pao, one of Hong Kong's leading newspapers, at the SGI-Hong Kong Culture Centre. Speaking to an audience of 550 on the media's responsibility to society and its influence, Mr. Cheung remarked that just as water has the power to transport or sink a ship, the media likewise is a powerful medium that journalists can use for the benefit or detriment of society and individuals. Recounting the devastating flooding of the Huai River in central China in the summer of 2003, Mr. Cheung referred to a case where the media happened to report on a young farmer who gave up his dream of going to college because of financial difficulties ensuing from the disaster. Sympathetic viewers spontaneously sent financial aid, and the young man went on to university. In contrast, Mr. Cheung cited examples in which reporters' errors in identity have ruined the lives of innocent individuals.
Mr. Cheung stressed the need for journalists to be aware of their moral responsibilities and mission to make positive contributions to society. Because the media is a powerful tool, he said journalists must be meticulous and conscientious in their work. Stating that the aim of Ming Pao is to provide readers with objective, trustworthy news on a timely basis, Mr. Cheung expressed hopes that the newspaper will continue to serve the people like a quiet spring that ultimately leads to the ocean and becomes its tides and currents.
Mr. Cheung graduated with a B.A. in economics from the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 1978. After working as a reporter for Commercial Radio Hong Kong and an editor for the Hong Kong Economic Journal Monthly, Mr. Cheung joined Ming Pao in 1986 and has served as its chief editor since 1995. Cofounded by popular Chinese writer Jin Yong, Ming Pao is the fourth largest selling newspaper in Hong Kong.
[Adapted from an article in the December 19, 2006 issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]