Saturday, July 30, 2016
21st Century Journalism = Mud-slinging in public?
Arnab: “In the guise of backing Kashmiris these sections (pseudo-liberals) including the sections of media are doing everything possible to support Pakistan sitting here in India…” On The News Hour, Jul 26. 2016.
Barkha: I hope I will always be someone whose journalism you loathe, because trust me, the feeling is so utterly mutual that it would kill me to be on the same side of any issue as you. In her Facebook post, Jul 27, 2016.
And thus began a saga of mud-slinging, calling each other names, and question each other’s patriotism. The allegations have gone down to extent of feeling ashamed of belonging to the same industry as the other. One might be surprised to know that once upon a time, there was one channel, one visionary, one journalist extraordinaire to provide a nurturing ground to Arnab, Barkha, Rajdeep alike.
They were all trained under one roof, and must have had coffee in the same cafeteria, just like your colleagues and mine. They must have had some disagreements then, but time helped their love grow and flourish. And today, those disagreements have led to the level of abusing each other in public, knowing that entire nation’s aspiring journalists look up to them.
Back in journalism school, we were taught to be objective. A reporter is supposed to reports incidents as they are. If we arranging byte of those in favour of a matter, and byte from someone against it becomes a mandate, since a journalist is supposed to show both sides of the coin.
Today we see, the nation’s role models coming out like grade school kids and insulting each other in public. Honestly, I have never seen a worse case of abusing one’s resources at their best. Barkha, whose courage and ferocity gave me an ambition. Arnab, whose passionate debates constitute most of dinner time TV in the same pseuso-liberal families. They just seem to be short of pulling each other by the hair and dragging to the principal’s office.
When I look back, I feel ashamed of having once belonged to an industry where such an immature lot belongs. It is the same lot that keeps forgetting how they are deviating from the subject only in the effort of opinionating the nation, to satisfy their ego of course. It has become a matter of personal pride to either parties, to break down any matter of national attention from “For” and “Against” to “For Barkha” and “For Arnab”. It is no more a matter of debating issues at hand objectively, leaving the final verdict in the hands of the citizens.
But, oh no! No. How could that be? After all, the intelligentsia of the nation, the pseudo-liberals, and liberals alike has taken up the humongous responsibility to educating the lesser mortals. The lesser mortals whose impressionable minds are being impressed with the idea that those screaming passionately on the other side of the screen are the actual liberals.
Forgetting that a real liberal does not have to scream, ‘cause a real liberal knows how to respect another person’s opinion. A true liberal in the field of journalism would simply care about reporting the facts as they stand. A true liberal does not suffer with complexes contributing to formation of an opinion in their favour rather than the subject. For liberals would never let their personal opinion interfere with their profession.
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