The Fourth Estate in the Philippines: An analysis

Batanes to Tawi-Tawi

Julmunir I . Jannaral

The Fourth Estate 

The Philippines is committed to the true aspirations of its people, to progress and it’s propensity for the local press to be considered as one of the “freest press in the world.”

Prof. Jaime B. Ramirez, a former mass communication faculty member of the University of the Philippines once said that the Philippine press has endured because there are no forces that would curb its freedom in writing News Stories, Editorials, and Columns by the Filipino journalists.

Over the years, the press has perpetuated a tradition of service, sacrifice that has made it one of the strongest pillars of our national life.

The development of the Philippine “Fourth Estate” in its news, editorials, cartoons and features provides an interesting footnote to our historical revolution and of the post-liberation period.

The Filipino journalists today are trying their best to reestablish their historical links with the Propaganda Movement, with the Diariong Tagalog and the La Solidaridad of Dr. Jose P. Rizal, Marcelo H. del Pilar and Graciano Lopez Jaena.

Formidable Task of a Journalist 

The formidable task of a journalist is to serve the growing clients with integrity and fairness. 

The journalist should maintain his highest integrity and always subscribe to the Code of Ethics of Journalists and not to plagiarize the published news reports or perform the copy and paste at the computer by passing it on as his own  intellectual property. 

The journalist like anybody else is a man with a vision and foresight who creates the worthiness of a fighting newspaper and in upholding the finest traditions of the Philippine press.

Today the trust of our press is development-oriented reporting and information dissemination. The development Media would now have to be harnessed in molding national unity, ideals and goals for the Filipino people.

The Press Freedom 

Press freedom is the cardinal right in a truly democratic society. 

The members of the progressive Fourth Estate are committed to the people’s aspirations and desires for unhampered freedom and national liberation.

The pens in the hands of the press people should be a mighty weapon against the excesses of Journalism- both internal and external. 

Hence, there is a saying and I quote, “The pen is mightier than the sword.” Unquote, such mission must be within the context of Journalism’s rules of decency, fairness, accuracy, and objectivity.

May I quote also one author who said, “there can be no such thing as a press freedom and no such thing as the integrity of the news if the men and women who write the news live in fear of the Security of their jobs.”

The enemies of Press Freedom are always on the lookout for slightest opening, a temporary weakness to silence those who dare speak the truth.

Hence, Security for our Media Workers is a 24/7 concern of the men and women behind the Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) based in Malacanang Palace, Manila.


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