Saturday, February 17, 2007

New Age Media - A Curse or a Cure ??????

24 hour News Channels (god knows how many are there, I counted till 18), 100 pages of Newspaper everyday (It takes atleast 1 hr. for scanning and all this in only Rs. 4), are we getting more then what is expected or required.

I was watching news on Saturday, 30th June'07 and I was amazed how minor water loggings are projected as small floods. It seems Milan Subway (always the 1st place in Mumbai to get water logged and whenever there is heavy rain you can spot 2-3 news channel vans here ready to capture the water logging), Turbhe Police Station (common photograph in newspaper everytime), Kalina, Kurla are favourites of our Media because they show recording and pictures of these places repeatedly but does that mean situation is completely out of control and it is flooding everywhere. I got atleast 10 calls from my parents, in-laws and relatives about our well being and I got tired of telling them that there is not even much of water logging in my street. I agree that in Mumbai there are few low lying areas where authorities had failed again and again to find some solution but can we generalise the whole situation for entire city.

Another episode I remember was that of Abhi-Ash wedding. My goodness, whichever channel you switch it is there continuously and this situation was there for many days. Many channels even started countdowns. What's all this fuss about? Aren't they human beings before a celebrity. It is their family affair and they do not want to publicise it, they want it as personal as possible perfect with people like me. But Media made it such a big issue that even people you were not bothered started feeling bad that why they are not invited. Most of the crime scenes or frauds and their investigations are covered in so detail that even guilty can take a cue and plan their escape accordingly.

In order to show something for 24 hrs, issues are created by Media out of nothing and minor issues are projected as complete disaster but at the same time it is also true that because of New Age Media, their alertness and hard-work lot of critical issues (such as female education, illegal abortions, organ trade, unauthorized practices, scams and scandals etc.) which are otherwise buried come into picture. I strongly feel that our media should focus more on such constructive news rather than just try to be a show stopper because they have such powerful tools which even the most powerful are afraid of. I had seen many stories, many incidents which have caught national attention just because they were raised by the media and somehow we feel secure since we believe that if something wrong happens to anybody, media will seek justice for it.

I can only request all the torchbearers of today's new age media that be something which we can be proud of and not something we should be ashamed of. It should be a cure more than a curse. We should feel secure with the empowered media and not feel that it is just a glamour doll playing in the hands of some powerful people. When Media is responsible enough, I will feel as powerful as anybody else in this world and that is what my heart wants and that is what it whispers to me........


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