ArpitGarg's Weblog

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Posts Tagged ‘arnab

CNN’s of India gave rise to the Fox News of India

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barka-rajdeep-arnab.jpgArnab’s Republic is on air and is already being called Fox News of India. For someone like me, who regularly tune in to CNN and Fox, I find some merit in this argument. Let me state at the onset that I don’t prescribe to the divisions of left, right and center and believe these lines have been created and preached by smart political parties to remain in power (both sides of the spectrum).

Having said that, just because I don’t prescribe to these, it doesn’t mean people don’t follow it. Voters across the world have been transformed into hard right and hard left by politicians, to create their so called voter base. In India Congress party ruled the country for the first 50 years and hence was able to imbibe its center-left ideology into all walks of life. Only center-left people (who believed and who aped) got backing at each and every step and rose to the top. Similarly, back channel funding, quick approvals were given to media channels that backed the prevalent ideology.

The radicalization of media on the center-left grew to an extent when it became all too obvious. Center-Left got called intellectuals and everyone else stupid or radicals. I have called this decade as the ‘decade of the right wing’ across the world. In line with political resurgence of the right in India, Republic TV has taken shape. Had the doors not shut on people with a particular ideology and they were not mocked and shamed in existing media, Republic might not have been born.

I find youth of India leaning more and more towards right and that’s not a good thing. People should be able to subscribe to ideology on case by case basis. Not everything in any ideology can be correct, not everything in any ideology can we wrong. I blame the obscene stranglehold of one particular side for far too long for this. They have oppressed and mocked the other side, which has fought back and how. People witnessed logic going for a toss even when corruption after corruption was unearthed and still the dynastic politics of national and regional parties was celebrated by existing media. People found existing media in bed with existing dispensation and people felt wronged. Hence they turned to the other side in anger. And angry decisions are rarely right.

Other side is not completely rosy too. They too will try and proscribe that they alone are prefect and existing center-left cabal is the devil. The fact is that devil lies in people and not ideologies. Slowly you will find politicians, media and intellectuals jumping the ship towards right, because that’s where the fat is. This will go on until the time people will be fed up with their propaganda. And then the Left wave will strike back. Such cyclical phenomena have been a fact throughout the history.

Present moment is one of the best times for channels like Republic to take shape. I just wonder if it would have been possible without the CNN’s of India.

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Written by arpitgarg

May 12, 2017 at 3:11 pm

Posted in General/Society, Media

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NDTV and the fight for TRP’s

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ndtv_advt.jpgI said this in the past and I will say in again, there is a cut throat race for TRP’s among News Channels. Earlier we saw Ravish Kumar doing a blank screen against the Channel that is getting TRP’s and now we see Barkha Dutt doing the same.

I don’t like Barkha and Arnab equally hence I will try to remain unbiased in my analysis. Why Barkha Dutt wrote what she wrote. From the days of Nira Radia tapes, which Arnab have used time and again to hit at paid journalists, Barkha Dutt have not been able to hit back. Barkha Dutt was the most prominent journalist to have been named in those tapes. No other News Anchor apart from Arnab went against these people. The rivalry was sown that very moment.

Slowly Arnab ate away the TRP’s and hence the Advt. revenue of other News Channels. NDTV was a major casualty in this. Low TRP means less money. Therein lays the sudden outburst. It does not lie in Arnab shaming her for Radia tapes, it does not lie in pointing out Hafeez Saeed naming her as a well wisher, and it does not lie in calling her anti-national. It lies in the TRP and the money.

That Barkha Dutt has to write a blog to put forward he point of view is a sign enough as to how many people watch her show. Few years back she was the one who used to set the primetime news agenda. Nowadays hardly anyone watches her show. It is the frustration. Arnab would be grinning ear to ear. He likes any and all publicity. If people talk about his show, it is a win enough for him.

It’s sad to see a leading News Channel going down the barrel. But it happens with time. Some survive, some perish. I think Arnab’s success lies in the fact that he chooses topics based on what will get more TRP’s. NDTV and Barkha on the other hand have not been able to get out of anti-RSS, anti-BJP ideology and a lot of times end up losing TRP’s as they just can’t give prominence to News that goes against that ideology.

All said and done, the clash has the potential to bring out dirty laundry of media out in the open. And who would not relish it!

Written by arpitgarg

July 29, 2016 at 4:49 pm

Arnab interviewed PM: Others Journalists please accept with humility

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journalist.jpgEver since Arnab’s interview with PM aired, a lot of journalists are running scorned. Why Arnab, why not us, is their question. “Oh he was soft as butter”, one of them said. Others, who are not saying it so openly, are shooting from behind the cloak. “Arnab is PM’s spokesperson” to “Arnab sold himself” are other things I heard. My only request would be, please accept with humility. It’s not PM’s problem if we have 100 news channels today. He picked the English News channel with highest TRP to reach out to maximum people. Simple!

I remember a famous Hindi Channel Journalist ran blank screen to protest against Arnab’s diatribe once. It amazed me then. It amazes me now. If Arnab didn’t have the TRP’s on his side, the same journalist would not have protested then, others like him would not have been scorned now. It’s not the interview or Arnab they are miffed about; it’s about the TRP’s, the advt. revenue they are worried about. They suspect falling TRP’s for their own shows, which in turn amounts to less bonus and eventual cut in pay. I hope they be honest and admit this. If/when they admit this fact; I wouldn’t have anything against them. I have issue with their double speak and their hypocrisy.

Be honest; say that we are only scorned due to surging TRP of Arnab’s show and eyeballs that he gets. I had a lot of respect for ‘blank screen’ journalist, but since that episode, how the mighty has fallen. It’s PM’s prerogative whom to give interview to. Accept this with humility. In fact I would go a step further, had Manmohan given an interview to Arnab say 3-4 years back, there would not have been this hue and cry. Can you guess why? Simple, Manmohan couldn’t have brought so much TRP and eyeballs. Modi brings with him, the TRP’s and advt. revenue and hence the diatribe.

Sore losers are never respected.

Written by arpitgarg

June 30, 2016 at 1:02 pm

Posted in Media

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Reporters or Talk Show hosts?

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talk_show_reporters.jpg

On Fox News in USA, a long running news show is telecast ‘The Hannity’. It is run by a person Hannity. It’s just like any other prime time shows that come on News channels. People are interviewed and occasional panel discussions. Recently Hannity admitted that he is not a reporter but a Talk Show Host.

It was a very honest admission unlike the hypocrites we see in Indian News Media. Don’t get me wrong, US media is much worse. But let’s concentrate on India for a little bit. Every night on various news channels, we see Talk Show hosts posing as reporters and maligning the name of media.

My assertion is they are mere actors and their shows are not unlike ‘Comedy Nights with Kapil’. They should not be allowed to call themselves reporters. Booming of News channels is a recent phenomenon in India and has grown during last 10-12 years or so. Initially these TV hosts were chosen from career reporters, who till then were foot soldiers. They got the opportunity to enter the TV studios but they just never left. Slowly they lost touch with the reality, with people. The lure of fat pay and big AC Studios was far too much when compared to heat/dust/sweat/pain that comes with real reporting.

Situation is even grimmer now. People without any experience in reporting are directly hired as Debate show hosts. Only requirement is one should be able to speak good English. Their knowledge of political, social situations doesn’t matter anymore. What matters is the eyeballs they can generate. The TRP’s!

Why I cited example of Hannity was, at least he was true enough to admit what he really is. A Talk Show Host. After a smug political breed, a new smug Media breed has emerged. They want special treatment, passes, perks and what not. My only advice to these people is, be honest and admit you are Talk Show Hosts. Maybe then real reporters will be able to redeem the profession.

Written by arpitgarg

April 23, 2016 at 11:08 am

Posted in Media

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