In the ‘80s when computers were introduced in all offices, especially government offices, labour unions were up in arms. They believed that this was an attempt to take away their livelihoods and the jobs of the future. The workforce also believed that introduction of computers would make it difficult for the senior staff to work on them, because they would have to be trained freshly in its use and that would have been difficult. Everybody opposed the move vociferously without necessarily looking to the facts. And almost all these people were the Educated, Urban crowd. What happened ultimately is that these very people can’t live without computers or mobiles now…
21st Century has brought in another perceived monster in India – Saffronization. Whether it is truly a monster or not, only time will tell, but once again a lot of the Educated, Urban crowd (the so-called ‘Intelligentsia’) is now shivering with fright at the unprecedented win of the BJP in UP and elsewhere in Bharat. At the core of these naysayers are the Main Stream Media and around them are the Leftists and the opposing political parties of India; at the fringe are the Student Unions of various Universities. The fear is again the loss of livelihood, training the mind once again, learning to cope with new situations and the fear of losing face. Let us take a look at these fears in detail:
LOSS OF LIVELIHOOD: It is a known fact that the erstwhile ruling party used to treat the Main Stream Media very well. Parties, free plane tickets, big and small favours regarding allotments, admissions, etc., advertisements, and so many more freebies were the norm. It is also a known fact that MSMs would get more income by suppressing / publicising a news item more than advertisements. Now they have to face a party which doesn’t take media reporters along for meetings, foreign visits; doesn’t give them out the pocket expenses; has cut down on parties, free food and booze; doesn’t splash money on suppressing news or any such thing. In fact, SCAMs itself have reduced to almost zilch, so there is no question of suppressing such news. In such a scenario, the MSMs have to work very hard to maintain their earlier lifestyle.
TRAINING THE MIND ONCE AGAIN: The MSM reporters in the past used to get a lot of side information from the party in power, or from the Government/ Semi-Government staff. Now they have to work for every information. If one will pay attention, one will see that if one channel shows a breaking news, the same video is shown by every other channel within minutes. In fact the sound bites are also the same. They protest in the same fashion on the same topic. Not just that, they call the same personalities on the debates too. It is not uncommon to see one person on one channel & then half-an-hour later, on another channel, saying the same thing and being asked the same questions. This shows that there is a complete lack of training in the various networks in the MSMs. They have become so lazy and accustomed to poaching information or being fed information so much that they don’t understand the meaning of the word ‘Reporter’ any more. They surely have the fear of going through the grind of relearning.
LEARNING TO COPE WITH NEW SITUATIONS: How could all the channels have got it so wrong with the elections that just went by? How could all the channels shown that AAP was going to become a National Party and then, when faced with such a rout, how is it that all channels were caught unawares? The fact is that to learn the mood of the New Resurgent India, the MSMs would have had to do ground work, and none of them did it. And when faced with opposing results, they did not know how to cope with it. They then went on to give the same trashy talk about Secularism being under threat, Minorities having problems, etc. They were completely ill prepared for the new situation of the BJP becoming a popular party. They probably knew it deep within, but fear of reaching out to the unknown, held them back. New times call for the new ‘V’s – Veracity and Verification, and our lazy MSMs find it difficult to cope with this.
THE FEAR OF LOSING FACE: Like our senior staff members who thought that they would look foolish if they were unable to learn how to use the computers, our MSM reporters have the same fear now. When the JNU problem was going on, they could have opposed the Leftists and supported the Nationalists openly, but it was a new ground for them … so they stuck to their narrative and ended up losing face – exactly the situation they wanted to avoid. The Media need to make a fresh start by first believing in PM Modiji, else when they toggle between positive news and their old narratives, the audience see them as chameleons which change colour temporarily.
This time the Media, print and T.V., learnt how to move with the times and speak out for the people instead of for the Congress and its other stooges. Like the Leftists dominated Trade Unions which are now a spent force in most of India, the Leftist dominated Media too is on its way to becoming a spent force. The reason for this is very simple – they have become egotistic, rusty and above all, corrupt. Like the pigs in the ‘Animal Farm’ (George Orwell’s famous book), the MSM too have been doing exactly what they were opposed to originally – making deals with the corrupt. One misses Russi Karanjia, the erstwhile founder of the Blitz and even Khushwant Singh. It’s time to bring back the News in News Reporting, before people give MSMs a shameful ‘goodbye’ and stick to Social Media for getting their share of News and Truth.
Jai Hind !!!