DailyPost 2017

Indian electronic media might be a bunch of the most clueless, news less media channels you can imagine of. While the channels veered away from the standard news formatting, with the passage of time and new elements coming into its fold, dithering away from news kept on becoming the norm. It went to the extent of getting typified and over a period of time, most of the electronic got typified one way or the other. The most disturbing part of it, is that they were not bothered about what was being talked about them. The news channels have themselves become news, and the anchors celebrities. The news channel also does not leave any stone unturned in making them a celebrity.

Can we not have even a slot for 15 -20 minutes, which can named as the News and it should really be news too. A collection of facts, pics, videos and what not. Today, we have reached a stage, where we are forced to define, what news is. Leave aside the less learned audience, even the news room does not know what news is. What would be the acceptable priority of news given the nature of audiences? The newscasters are lost in the electronic commercial jamboree and new genre news performers are born, called the Anchors. Anchoring what, is a billion-dollar question. Program after program different channels, claim to be cutting the clutter, providing hard facts, doing reality check, being ahead of other channels and bringing you the news the fastest.

If this is a sales pitch, then what were they really supposed to do. Given their two decade vintage they have been able to create a opinionated generation. When a news program is created with a one line subject and one hour of discussion, it was supposed to be the next generation of news where enlightenment was provided free with the news. With the spokesperson / experts taking the centre stage, where would the enlightenment come from? Besides, the channels started keeping stock ready experts / speakers. The anchor was the given the slot as per the market he or she was able to create. At the end of the day, the news dishes were coming out of the same kitchen and what was important was to get the TRP, rest everything was inconsequential. The venom large number of anchors spit is crazy. This is the prime-time game.

Whole day it is battle of moving to some action point or the other, trying to get some controversial statements and then engage supposedly those who matter on that point, into a verbal duel. Being brought up in this sort of an environment, what would one treat the news to be? An opinion, what else? When facts become opinion, is an indication that the civilization is heading for its nemesis. What to cover and what not to cover, is the ultimate choice the channel makes pretty early, in its existence. If some incidents need to be compulsorily covered, the angle or the twist is the most part of the game, which the anchor and the channel have learnt to play very efficiently. Can we resurrect news and with it a democratic generation?

Sanjay Sahay

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