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Dr Siti Suriani Othman is senior lecturer in the Communication Programme, Faculty of Leadership and Management, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM). She is also Visiting Professor (ranked assistant professor) at the School of Journalism and Communication, Xiamen University, China (2015), Visiting Scholar, Xiamen University Malaysia (2016) and Visiting Professor, Fakultas Ilmu Sosial dan Ilmu Politik, Universitas Syiah Kuala, Aceh (2017).

She holds a doctorate in Journalism from Nottingham Trent University (2012), Master’s Degree (Communication) from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (National University of Malaysia) (2005) and Bachelor’s Degree from Universiti Teknologi MARA (Journalism) (2001).

She also presents papers around the world including the UK, Greece, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Paris and virtual conferences in the US and Russia. To date, about 50 papers have been presented at various conferences. Her first single-authored book, Membongkar Rahsia Penulisan Berita Objektif: Pengenalan kepada Semantik Umum di Malaysia was published in 2006 with more upcoming publications soon. She has published popular writing since the age of 15 and was a columnist for Berita Harian in 2008-2009. To date, more than 170 feature stories have been published in local and national newspapers and magazines, including some writings in China and Taiwan.

Recently, she was awarded the Most Outstanding Young Lecturer (USIM) with several previous awards such as the Most Industrious Lecturer in Popular Writing by the Faculty of Leadership and Management, USIM, the Excellent Lecturer Award 2013 and 2014 (USIM) and Anugerah Pena USIM in 2016.

Abstract for  Keynote Speech


Journalism used to be a field detached with its audience. It is formal and institutionalised, with clear definition of “who is journalist”?. But the inception of the internet changed such relationship, making the line blurred between “who is journalist?” and “who is audience?”, hence the question of “who produce content and to whom?”. The fact that social media allows various writings to get published without gatekeeping process and almost without cost blurring the line further, turning almost everyone into journalist or citizen journalist. The implications are clear, may writings are low in quality, lack of verification of fact and untrustable. Libel and slender are rampant since everybody can publish. These can pollute humanities, when journalism should be a tool of improving human lifes and the agent of democracy. To cope with such development, we have to handle the situation in at least two ways, one; to ensure journalism graduates to be ready to face unprecedented challenges and the emerging fourth industrial revolution and other humanities issues, and second; to inculcate understanding of ethics among the (generic) producers of content. It is argued that when the society is value-driven, journalism will not be a treat to humankind. To achieve this, both journalism graduates and non-journalism graduates must understand and practice ethical writing approach to ensure publications in any platforms will support and sustain humanities.


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