December 06, 2016
Since the moment Mr. Modi announced demonetization, the whole nation got into a debate on how could they do it, whom does it impact most the rich or poor, did some influential people already know about it etc.
Positive or negative it affected every Indian, so it makes sense that whole Media fraternity was focusing on this one issue “how long is the queue at the bank or ATM” and no one discussed anything about what’s happening in Aleppo or Toxic Air, Plastic Garbage or Electronic Waste etc.
It is understood that media could not divert its focus from such an important issue since 8th November but what has been stopping them from covering other stories, issues from around the world or within the country so far? Is it that there is always such a burning issue in our country that Media just can’t shift its focus to anything else. I feel so strange that we never discuss anything like Aleppo or Food Crisis in Venezuela in our lunch or tea breaks. Do you remember any news channel closely covering ZIKA virus? Or is it that we are so used to all these regular issues that we need new sensation every day?
The fact is we never discuss these issues because most of us are not aware of anything other than what Indian media is feeding us. We think what they want us to think, we discuss what they want us to discuss. Over last 20 or 30 years we are made to believe that there is no issue larger than Indo – Pak or Hindu – Muslim or Kashmir issue on this earth, but when I met people from South America and LATAM, they could hardly identify the Indo-Pak problems. It is not the most discussed issue in any global forum, so imaging how could this be the most important issue in the world? I mean seriously, don’t we know about Palestine & Gaza where generations have faced wars or country like Somalia where people are facing civil war even today. Don’t we know that food & clean drinking water is probably most burning issue today.
In a way media and a bunch of people are dominating our thought process, so do you really think that you are a Free Thinker? Freedom of thinking is required first if you want freedom of speech but unfortunately the former does not exist at a large level.
News Channels and News Papers are the main source of information for 99% people in India. We follow some renowned personalities from TV, Politics and Entertainment industry, we believe in people and so in their line of thoughts. Since a major population follows them so they have formed a community called “Intellectual Community”. They gives us a direction and we start following the flock.
If you ever get a chance, then ask some basic questions to this community like ‘how do you think environmental issues can be solved’ or ‘what is the solution to bring parity between rich and poor’ and you would know how intellectual they are. I am not suggesting that no one from the community is actually intelligent but just because someone is good at one or two skills or someone was born in a political family doesn’t qualify to be an intellectual. They might be influential but not necessarily intellectual, so probably its high time to differentiate the two and start thinking about how can we get rid of this "Mental Dominance".
We need to think if we really need 24X7 news channels? I mean what’s the average time you spend on a news channel every day? I bet not more than one or two hours max. Then why there are so many channels surviving? Answer is simple; they are doing business and making money not charity. We need to think that why every news is a breaking news? And why there is so much sensationalism? Simply because it is profitable, people watch sensationalized news which raises TRP and news channels with higher TRP gets more business.
If a channel’s TRP is going higher, then others follow the same trend, result is sensationalism everywhere. So its not the mango people who want sensation but the people in business.
It’s time when we need to find alternative ways to get Information & Experiences not Opinions. This is a responsibility we MUST bear if we want our future generations to evolve as Free Thinkers.