Providing information to the public through digital communication channels has become popular now. Doing so for official information is currently a common trend among the press agencies in the digital era.
Journalist Vu Viet Trang, General Director of Vietnam News Agency (VNA), has given some comments on communication trends in the digital era and highlighted orientations for the VNA to sustain its stature as a mainstream media agency in the cyberspace.
|General Director of Vietnam News Agency Vu Viet Trang__Photo: VNA|
Mainstream news suppliers in cyberspace
The number of social network users in Vietnam currently stands at around 73.6 million, 95 percent of which use Facebook. Meanwhile, the monthly active users of Zalo, a social media platform of Vietnam, reached 74.7 million in February this year, higher than the 67.8 million users of Messenger of Facebook-owner Meta.
Trang said via social networks, press agencies can quickly learn of erroneous or ill-intentioned information so as to provide corrections. Press outlets’ mass presence in the cyberspace has encouraged internet users to help spread and turn their official news into the mainstream information flow.
In the flow of strong digital transformation, most of the press agencies have been shifting to a multimedia model, she pointed out, noting that social networks are a channel for press agencies to advertise their “brands” and information products and then attract the public to their traditional and typical news items.
VNA and the strategy for building digital platforms
The General Director said the VNA’s source news departments and press - publication units have been strongly reforming both news contents and formats.
They have launched new types of information such as infographic, longform (which combines text, photo, video, and diagram in a product), megastory (which combines audio, video, photo, and data shown by using digital technology), and timeline (information shown in timeline). They are also actively popularizing information about Vietnam in multiple languages such as Vietnamese, Chinese, Russian, English, French, and Spanish on social media apps while diversifying ways for spreading external information, helping fulfill the VNA’s role as the key press agency for foreign service of Vietnam.
The VNA currently owns 14 verified Facebook fanpages tasked with disseminating official information and the country’s achievements in national reform and development. Foreign-language fanpages have also proved effective in performing communication tasks, according to Trang.
She said the VNA is utilizing digital platforms as an effective channel for distributing multimedia and multilingual news to users around the world.
As the national e-newspaper for foreign service, VietnamPlus is stepping up access to users on digital platforms. Aside from its Facebook fanpages, it has also set up accounts on other popular platforms such as Zalo, TikTok, MyClip, Twitter, and YouTube.
The VNA’s official news shared on social networks by VietnamPlus has greatly helped to fight against ill-intentioned and fake news, she said.
The official added other external information outlets of the VNA like Vietnam Pictorial, Viet Nam News, and VNews have also been strongly capitalizing on the internet to spread news to readers, especially Vietnamese and foreign people worldwide.
Trang stressed that mainstream media agencies are always the places where readers seek verified and precise information, so they need to uphold their advantages and goals in order to become mainstream news sources in the cyberspace as well.
Apart from providing precise information, press agencies also have to cover policy implementation and report on objective opinions and assessments by authorities, experts, and effected groups so that the public can gain an overarching view of issues, she went on.
As social networks are not copies of press agencies, prudence is necessary and information must be precise when publishing news on those platforms, thereby helping optimize social media advantages like interactions, comments, and shares to perform political tasks in an effective manner, the VNA leader added.-(VNA/VLLF)