Thursday, January 14, 2010

Media Conflict and citizens

Hello Folks,

How is life?

Haven't been posting for quite some time...

Well, last week was fruitful for some Grey Cell rejuvenation ! This 6th of January the B.Barooah college in Guwahati city of Assam saw a seminar talk on the topic , "Media Conflict and Citizens."

Though it is usual for a city to be have events, seminars, talks and discussions but it was for the first time Guwahatians saw such a forum open to the public as the members participating in the seminar who again were its audience were from various disciplines besides the field of Media.

The icing on the cake was that the event saw Miss Sevanti Ninan( columnist from Chennai based the Hindu and the Hindi daily Hindustan ) as well as Editor of " The Hoot " which is known to be South Asia's Media Watch Website.

She also authored books among many others, " Reinventing the Hindi Public speaking" (Sage publications).

While The city's journalistic fraternity saw the coming of Mrs Indrani Raimedhi, Assistant Editor of the Assam Tribune, Teresa Rehman ( Journalist and media consultant) as well as Mr. Naba Thakuria ( General Secretary, Press Club)

The talk tried to analyse media's relation with its supposed "consumers" which is the public and which included its attidute towards the industry.

It is assumed that sheer pervasiveness of the media brings students from all walks of life into a public spectrum for either discussion, debate or opinion sharing.

Indian Media's progress can be studied when one sees the graph of its growth specifically in post conflict areas Diphu ( N.E. India) , Kashmir, Nagaland, Mizoram, Manipur while Assam having its traditional media setup.

Given the fact that media setup in regions of the N.E. India are not much revenue generating because of scarce advertising leading up to questions as: " who is funding it ?"

Journalists are also poorly paid compared to their counterparts in the country's Capital.

Nagaland in the year 2003 saw the publication of dailies. The reshuffling and the troubleshooting measures suggested by the media persons was that there should be an urgency for restraint in terms of language published.

There should also be adequate training to the workforce of an media organisation with maturity being the aid in times of crisis situtions.

Commenting on the existence of what is labelled as "Commercial Journalism" the guests for the day cited that elements and practices of sensationalism runs side by side which tells that fiction is also there.

The disseminating of news should try to involve the trio of options, coverage, background, the mediapersons said.

Speaking on these lines the media persons took the case of the news of the arrest of Ulfa ( United liberation Front of Assam) leaders last year and the consequent creation of human drama and sensation along with it.

It is important to see how citizens view conflict. Mr. Naba Thakuria reportedly said that the militant in the news is at the end someone's son and then the situation takes a turn for the worse.

On the question from one of the participants on the issue of objectivity, Indrani Raimedhi said that hidden agenda of media organisations sometimes takes away the objectivity of a news item.

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