DailyPost 1759

The waves the Pegasus expose is making can very fairly be judged as superior to what the whole journalist fraternity in this country have produced in the last few years. Our media got into what they do best. The commentary mode. Describing things which have already been written with clarity based on research and also the connection it has with the ecosystem. The investigative journalism in this country has now been limited to archival search, or two video clippings showing the same persona delivering contrary statements. It can also be comment and counter comment and adding music and jazz of a mofussil marriage. The print has already been completely wedded Big Bazaar big sale ads and at times Thank You ads.

It would take a long time to fathom out what is their job description and for what purpose their founders created the organizations they did. The saddest part is the information provided by them is even inferior to the WhatsApp University, which has been crowdsourcing way beyond a single newspaper house can even imagine of. How lots of leading international newspapers and magazines made a turn around in the digital age, needs to be looked into. Their capability to collaborate and put in world class journalistic resources for months together to churn out a research material which defines the discourse. Do have so many channels and newspapers to repeat the same story, which is there on the state channel as well.

If you get into the undercurrent of journalism the world over and only few get beyond the routine, based on the already created strengths. Three trends are very visible; firstly, the level of expertise, secondly, their knowledge of the tech world and how to use it as an important tool in their day to day reporting and the most important of it all, tech journalism. In its nascent stage it was called Computational Journalism. It has various modalities way beyond the conventional. Wikileaks was a perfect example. It was tech enabled without any journalist writing even a word. The output was more than what the whole world media could produce and judgement was left to the readers.

It gained momentum with the ultimate faith Edward Snowden reposed in Glenn Greenwald of the Guardian. When journalistic values, acumen and tech merge seamlessly, modern journalism is born. All the three are missing in our context. Glenn Greenwald learnt the tricks of the trade starting with the internet relay chat. The editing of critical leaked documents, redacting and what not. What was delivered to the world as Snowden Revelations has changed the world. Journalism has to match the tech for its existence. Otherwise, the real driver of the world remains an alien to them. Then we have the Panama Papers; 2.6 TB of data or 11.5 million leaked documents; research, meaning and the narrative. In 2016 it shell shocked the shell company world. What a brilliant investigation it was; tech, legal, financial et al. And then we had Paradise Papers, 13.4 million confidential electronic documents. Where does studio based journalism stand in comparison.


Sanjay Sahay

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