Sunday, September 9, 2007

Role of the Media

In the information world of today, the media plays a big role in influencing the society. Indian government is very much liberal when it comes to the media. However, today the media especially the news channels are stooping too low to increase their TRP ratings.

At times I fail to realize that I am watching a news channel and not an entertainment channel. I understand that there is nothing wrong in reporting of popular reality shows on news channels. However, today these news channels end up devoting more than an hour on telecasting video shoots of reality shows. Is this what news channels are supposed to do?

A very recent incident of how 16 year old Adnan's Patrawala's killing was somehow influenced by the role played by news channels is the best example of how things could go wrong if the media does not behave in a responsible manner.

Adnan met 3 guys in some Pool club 6 months ago. By these regular meet they came to know all about Adnan & they planned to trap him. They created fake id of “Angel”(girl) & posed to Adnan in Orkut community & lured him. They arranged all things & told Adnan via “Angel” that come near some mall if you want to meet me in person . Adnan went & they abducted him . They rang up his parents & demanded ransom.The 1st call was considered by parents as a prank , but after 2nd call they realise what the situation is. Parents registered complain in Oshiwara police station , police got into action but news got leaked to news channels & all National news telecasted the story of kidnapping. The kidnappers panicked & killed Adnan. Though police manged to catch all 3 , an innocent boy lost his life in the bargain.

I heard one news channel blaming Orkut for the murder. A knife is used in the kitchen to cut vegetables and the same knife can be used to kill a human being. Will you ban the knife from use in kitchen because it was or can be used to kill someone? The media could have come up with ways to educate people on safety measures to be taken while using social networking sites like Orkut instead of putting the blame on orkut. This way they could have portrayed themselves in good light.

The media is quick to pounce on governments, police officers, government run organizations for not behaving in a responsible manner. Then what about the media. Are they not supposed to behave in a responsible manner?

The media has played many positive roles too. Highlighting the issues of corruption, illegal activities, drug abuse and many more. I hope they stick to that role and not be a cause for panic and chaos in the society.
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