The Press and the Media: their role:2

11 SEP 2015

Press and Media

   I had started on this topic earlier and I am resuming now: so I reproduce the first piece in the initial part to ensure continuity of reading:

The Press and the Media are supposed to serve the people by informing them of both sides of a coin on any topic of interest or importance to them in the short term or over the long term. Particularly they are a check or a brake on the politicians of all hues and parties, whose purpose is supposedly to serve the same end system namely the people.

As both the politicians and the Press are supposed to serve the same common system, the people, it is important that the Press plays a pivotal role of informing people of the pros and cons of any issue that affects them currently or could affect them in the future. While doing this role they have to be

1. Neutral i.e., should not focus on any one party, group, religion or caste or individual etc. but should focus on all the people. Most importantly they should be perceived as neural by the people too. It is like justice delivery system in this respect namely, not only justice has to done but justice has to be perceived to be done also. Not only the Press should give + to all the people, but they should be perceived to be giving + to all the people as well. This is the only way that the Press and the media can establish credibility among people which is after all the only foundation on which they can survive and grow.

2. They should think about what they are professing so strongly and vociferously gives to the people, a plus or a minus, over the long term and the short term before they present whatever they present. They should ensure this by asking leading questions on the effect on the people the point under discussion has and not whether the point under discussion itself is good or bad, right or wrong.

3. When they support or oppose any aspect, they should have a sense of proportion. That is, they should compare the issue under discussion with similar issues of the past and the results they produced on the people in the past.

4. They should also see that in doing so, they should not waste the precious time of the people as well as their own time. We have a few comments on what is going on currently in the Indian Press and the Media vis-à-vis the above requirements. We will give them in the next few installments.

Let us see how the Press and the media go about discharging their role. They do it in such a way that, what they do appears neutral but actually is all but neutral.

Take the way the headlines are framed: "Narendra Modi compels bureaucrats to attend 'his' Independence day speech". Obviously this is not addressed to the correct receiving system they should be serving but to Modi detractors. If the same is reported having the correct receiving system of the Press, the people as focus, this would have been reported as “ Modi wants bureaucrats to set an example to people in their departments and outside, by making it a point to ensure that they do attend the Independence day speech of the Nation which they are serving". Or "Modi wants bureaucrats to respect the Independence day speech of the PM of the country".

On the other hand, If they think that they should serve the Congress party, they will report it as “ For the first time in the history of India, Modi has made attendance at hisaddress on Independence day compulsory which the Congress never did in all its decades of rule”. If they think that their receiving system is the opposition parties of India, they will say: “ Proof that Modi is an autocrat on the way to become a dictator and this is against the democratic fibre of the country!.” The tragedy is the wording is such that they call it Modi's Independence day speech rather than the Independence day speech of the world’s largest democracy, India.

The point I am making is we cannot do anything against our press because they pass on anything totally detrimental to people as part of the freedom of speech enshrined in the Constitution of India. But what we can do is to guess the receiving system of what ever they report and protect ourselves from such attempts to brainwash us! The receiving system is pretty obvious to guess and no amount of subtlety and intelligence of the Press people can succeed in hiding the receiving system in their mind when they say what they say: We can stop the Press from directing our thinking in a way that is harmful to the people of this great Nation.

One affected indian Bakra/bakri in the service of the people of India.

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