News : We can Use Appearance Overpowers Even the Truth !

Partner Site : Once there lived two neighbours Tom & Jack. One day Jack was angry at Tom for some reason and started to spread rumours that his neighbour, Tom was a thief. As a result, Tom was arrested. Days later Tom was proven innocent. After having been released he sued Jack for wrongly accusing him.

In the court Jack told the Judge: “They were just words, didn’t harm anyone.” The Judge told Jack: “Write all the things you said about him on a piece of paper. Cut them up and on the way home throw the pieces of paper out. Tomorrow, come back to hear the sentence.”
Next day, the Judge told Jack: “Before I tell you the judgement, you will have to go out and gather all the pieces of paper that you threw out yesterday, otherwise you will be hanged.” Jack said: “I can’t do that! The wind spread them and I don’t know where to find them.” The judge then replied: “The same way, simple words may destroy the honour of a man to such an extent that one is not able to fix it.”
In the current scenario the ‘Media’ is playing the role of Jack, and Tom is the common man who is becoming the victim who is not able to do much.
The media plays a very important role as a source of information and education. It accommodates the world into a single village which is saturated of media information. Today television channels and newspapers are making fast money by cashing on the news in a wrong sense and wrong way. In the race to become more popular and to make money, they have broken all the limits media must follow while serving to build a healthy and progressive society. They have no respect for the sentiments and ethics of the people and land whom they serve to, with their immense power to influence the masses they just make judgments like a true dictator rather than giving good friendly advice as they used to do. If this continues in the future then we people will have to think about the role of media in our life. The fact is that today’s media is driven by politics and the corporate world. Today’s media is market oriented, embedded with power and agenda setting while we need a media which stands for masses and is ethical, inclusive and accountable.
Indian media is the fastest growing in the world, but imprisoned by profit! We have fashion correspondents, we have glamour correspondents, we have society correspondents, and not a single newspaper or channel in this country has a full time correspondent working on poverty, which is one of the greatest concerns of the Indian economy. The “Lakme India Fashion Week” was functioning in Mumbai and we had more than 500 correspondents covering the event. At the same “Lakme Fashion Week” the models were displaying cotton garments in Mumbai and one hour flight to Vidharba, men and women who grew that cotton were committing suicide at the rate of 6 – 8 each day. At the end of the day, who is committing suicide, the farmers, come on and take a chill pill.
The media is willing to air hour-long programmes on “world will end in 2012”, on “6 pack abs of actors”, on “Sehwag’s performance” but it fails to focus or raise voice on issues such as farmers suicide in India, where 60% still depend on agriculture, 836 million Indians live on less than 50 cents a day, nearly 2,00,000 farmers have committed suicide since 1997, driven by debt and distress, yet the mainstream media hardy reflects this reality.
Today, it appears that the media is in a very bad and pathetic situation. The media gives huge hype to the party hosted by Mukesh Ambani for Sachin’s 100th century but on the other hand it fails to highlight the number of huts and the standard of living of the people whom we can observe just when our flight takes off from the Mumbai airport. The media is very much excited in spending hours together on movie reviews and their box office collection every weekend but on the other hand fails to even create awareness about Irom Sharmila who has been protesting for the past 11 years demanding the repeal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act from Manipur and the Compete Act goes unnoticed from the public.
The media is so very happy to report the romantic scene between the actor and actress in Bade Acche Lagte Hain but fails even to bring in awareness about the ban on Hijab in various institutes. The media leaves no stone unturned in showing the glitter and fashion of the western world but fails rather miserably to showcase the darker side of Guantanamo Bay. The media is busy celebrating India’s first cricket world cup anniversary but it would not want to project the true image of Israel and its consistent bombardment on Palestine. On one end we are bombarded with advertisements of soft drinks and on the other we fail to create awareness about the scarcity of drinking water and the steps to be taken to encounter the problem.
The newspaper industry is also not lagging; it is more worried about the actresses’ wardrobe malfunction than a government malfunction. It is more worried about page 3 parties than political parties. They are more worried about Bollywood affairs than the current affairs. They are more focused on page 3 than 1, 2, 4, 5 and so on. Their aim is to create sensation rather than sense. They are more focused towards projecting news about 200 million Indians not owning television, mobile or vehicle but are least worried about half of the India homes that don’t have toilets.
Today the media is more inclined towards covering each and every issue of Bollywood and Cricket, because these are the two things which the majority of the population is attracted towards. The media tries to treat every-news to that of elastic. It tries to pull the news as much as it can, till the fear of its breaking looms, during the course of action. By adding in more and more masala/ drama to the actual issue it tries to make it much more interesting and public relevant.
The online media is also not lagging in using the news in a different fashion. Recently when I was browsing the net, I came across a news report which was focusing Bollywood celebrities and their pets, stating, “SRK stated that when it comes to trust, he trusts his dogs the most. For these celebs, pets are like members of their family. The names of Salman Khan’s pet dogs go like this – ‘Myson’ and ‘Myjaan’! The love is so evident from those names.” The news also contained photographs of various celebrities with their pets. Sometimes I feel that we are giving more importance and hype to pet animals of Bollywood stars than the issues and problems of the common man. Not far are the days when the news headlines will read, “Amitabh Bachan’s cat no more, please pray for her soul to rest in peace.”
Today the media has news which is mainly related to celebrities and their personal lives and have no mass appeal or relevance to the general public. Mrinalini Sharma slapped co-star Rajeev Khandelwal,  Aishwarya Rai gaining weight, Aamir was caught peeping?, Malika on her sex appeal, Shilpa Shetty is pregnant, celebrities’ break-ups of the year, Mahek Chahal to re-enter Big Boss, Priyanka Chopra missing from Don’s party, bonding time for Deepika’s ex-flames, who wore what for Esha’s mehendi, etc. I really do not understand as to how the common public will benefit from the news like this? Frankly writing, this is an effort not to make sense but to create sensation out of nothing.
Media acts as a mirror of the society. Its main duty is to inform and educate the people but nowadays we see media is not doing its duty honestly. Instead of giving important information and educative programmes it is giving emphasis to sensationalise the public. It is only trying to attract people to increase their TRP rating. The media raises the matter for 2 or 3 days then it forgets that and never tries to get the feedback of the cases. Today news channels and even some newspapers have become mouthpiece of some political parties. Their work then limits only to spread the ideology of the party rather than giving the correct news. People have to judge on their own by looking different channels for the same news and then form a conclusion.
Life without media is like a lamp without oil. Media has a constructive role to play for the society. It’s high time that the media started playing an important role and projected news which can educate the general public. The media is the strongest tool for any kind of revolution to take place in a country. It needs to become much more serious with its role and responsibility in the society.
Media always points fingers at others but it fails to realise that the other four fingers are pointing back at them. By this I do not mean that it should not raise issues but it should also ensure that it does justice to its roles and responsibilities. Thus today, the need of the hour is that more and more students and youth decide to pursue their careers in the field of media and try to create a value-based media whose sole objective should be to unveil the curtains of falsehood and bring truth in front of the public. We need be masters of our mouths, so that we won’t be slaves of our words.
by Syed Kazim


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