Sunday, June 01, 2008

Misleading Electronic Media; Unfortunately Opinion Leaders in India

Recently there had been a discussion on a NEWS channel over the contents of daily soaps on entertainment channels. That was an appreciable broadcast for mass awareness/ realization. But, I doubt is there any platform where we have our word to demand NO NONSENCE from NEWS channels.

Be it democracy or strategies of marketing, opinion leaders are always the prime people to make things even. I.e. opinion leaders are those who drive their followers. In the battles of TRP among NEWS Channels, they are misleading themselves in their role of mass broadcasters. As a viewer I feel that we are not getting quality contents through our news channels, especially HINDI NEWS CHANNELS.

We are not properly updated about the latest developments in Politics and government policies. Monsoon is overhead but there is no proper update on its expected intensity and arrival. A common man is unaware of economic measures taken against rising inflation, what decisions RBI has taken is never ever bothered by NEWS Networks, Mr. PM recently had few abroad trips, no one has been informed when, whom, and whys of such visits. Why there are no discussions over foreign policies of our government. Why the NEWS Channels are as good as gossip shows on ZOOM TV. Can’t we have some dedicated page3 news channels covering all these? The intensity with which celebrities are covered by Newsmen, there is a marginal demarcation line between channels like zoom and ajtak.

When Sanjay Dutt was being transported to some jail in Pune from Mumbai, at the same time Dr. Manmohan Singh was visiting Mumbai only on a very important visit. This visit was somewhere shown in InfoBar and throughout the day Dutt’s pilgrim was covered LIVE. For past ten days Noida double murder case is running LIVE. The pressure from media only motivated Noida Police to solve issue in a wrong way. Because the case had been covered so intensely with information, misinformation and dramatization that Police took unwanted pressure to give instant results; and eventually they did blunders. And everything is being gossiped LIVE. If the media is really so active and concerned to let victims have the real justice, why not they are updating on Nithari’s accused. Their case is still open despite obvious speaking evidences. What is courts next date of their hearing? Who will inform us?

Why we can’t be served NEWS which should have useful use by society. Why we are made believed to bother about U-tube video stunts, rumors, superstitions, small town murders, any insane climbing electric tower and many other unwanted stuffs/ gossips. Today NEWS in India is obviously TRP driven not society driven. Even they are served as a medium to promote TRP of TV shows on entertainment channels.

Why NEWS channels are not ethically driven? Why Glamour, poor language, eye-catching captions in big fonts are overtaking essence of correct, comprehensive and useful NEWS? Why a 24 hour LIVE NEWS CHANNEL is inferior to 30 minutes bulletin of DoorDarshan.
It is an alarming situation for PrasarBharti to tighten its control over Indian News channels. The open discussion started by DoorDarshan on social responsibility of electronic media should be continued on a wider scale and the discussion must end up with democratically approved strict code of conducts. The government / PrasarBharti must take initiatives of rating NEWS Channels and appreciating them. PrasarBharti should have some rights to blacklist and impeaching unethical players also. Below are some points which can be considered while preparing formats of a comprehensive evaluative system:-

1. Role towards society ( education, creating awareness towards fundamental rights and duties)

2. Meeting coverage standards of different NEWS sources ( e.g. government, politics, economy, business, sports and ‘entertainment & lifestyle’) on the broadcast weight specified by evaluation council.

3. Negative marks on nonsense NEWS broadcasting.

4. Setting standards to broadcast programs beneficial for rural population.

5. Evaluation of InfoBar contents.

Nonsense contents broadcast through NEWS Channels is the major problem due to high end TRP battle which demands a channels administration to make people paused with surfing remotes. If I&B ministry and PrasarBharti will not take required measures, credibility of Indian Electronic media will be vanished on global scale. We must foresee to build global NEWS broadcasting platform like CNN or BBC with quality contents on AIR.


1 comment:

  1. Aditya Ratnam3:07 AM

    Excellent ..

    It seems you squeezed the frustration from common man and flashed the same on them through light of obvious words in non-obvious phrases !!



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