In times where staying connected, having knowledge about events from all over the world is of utmost importance, the major sources of this information are the “news channels”. So I switch on to some xyz channel and there are continuous flashes of a women’s cleavage (of course censored). The words “BREAKING NEWS” cover the entire screen and then when the entire story is put out, it is about some actress wearing a particular dress at a function where her cleavage becomes“breaking news”. This piece of news is run for over an hour and the same is repeated a day later questioning if this was an “intentional” mistake. Where there are groups of people fighting for the self-respect of the women of our society, here we make the display of her body and call it“news”. If such a news item is not available, the next item they go to is RELATIONSHIPS.
“AAJ YEH HERO AUR YEH HEROINE DIKHE THE SAATHMAI COFFEE PEETE HUE. KYA PYAAR KA MAUSAM AA GAYA HAI INKE LIYE?”
And yes, this is a “BREAKING NEWS”, or in more familiar terms-SANSANI KHABAR. So this is what is defined as“news”. Not the numerous murders, not the various acts of terrorism. No, that is an “everyday thing”. We will devote an entire news piece, an hour of it to a random person speaking ill of the nation but not to youngsters fighting for their rights. We will not show the numerous kids dying of hunger or begging on the streets just to have one meal. We will not create awareness regarding the various health and environment related issues but we will show a 3 hour news piece of two politicians abusing each other over the screen. Yes that is what is to be done because it is necessary to keep the TRPS up. What is better than the display of pictures of female body to shoot up the TRP? Why think of the effect it has on the masses? Why think of the consequences of a particular news item on a person or community? We just need to pull up the number of our viewers and be content with it.
“AN ELEPHANT IS STILL LOOSE. IT TRAMPLED A SCOOTER PARKED NEAR BY.”
This statement was flashed at least for an hour or two and guess what? This also was a SANSANI KHABAR.
Rape victims are asked questions: How did you feel after getting raped?
Statements like ‘It was the girl’s fault that she was out late in the night’ ‘Two movie stars spent an evening together having dinner. So are they having an affair?’ should not be encouraged by continuously providing them news coverage. Wardrobe malfunctions in any event should not be turned into breaking news as person’s attire or his/her body is never a “news item”. The social and personal effect it makes cannot be put into words.
Making up a news item just because you don’t have news at that moment is both morally and ethically wrong. News media is responsible only to deliver the information about the events happening and not making a huge issue of it. An emotional mindset needs to be maintained, ie, consent to the feelings of the victim, the viewers needs to be made while talking about an issue. Because the media has a greater impact on our minds than what we realize. It builds or breaks a man’s character in the society. It decided who you are for the society. It controls all the cards of changing a man’s future. And with this control, comes a responsibility of being kind, considerate. Don’t only be a reporter, be a human too.
Indeed, the pen is mightier than the sword.