Media once upon a time, was the voice of people, revealing the wrong doings of those in public and making sure that everything was out in the open.
It was about justice and voice and taking risks to speak about things that no one would dare to at the time.
But over time, media has regressed to meaning just paid news, eye catching and yet ridiculous news material, sensationalism and propaganda.
Propaganda, seems to be the new ‘it’ word, with almost every article and personal Facebook post or blog talking about how propaganda/PAID media works.
And yet I don’t think we all realize how far reaching and deep its consequences can be. Can one even begin to imagine that media can very well be used to influence and affect the people watching it, and therefore affect the future of a nation?
The reason why I am talking of this, could be an innocuous thing that hasn’t really struck anyone, but it was the release of the Jio SIM card by Reliance, and the flurry of positive comments and reviews by it.
No, I’m not talking of Jio, but the people behind it, Mukesh Ambani, for whom I frankly, have never really heard a bad word about. Ever! How come? Especially in a country which is high on Twitter hormones and Kejriwal bashing.
Where everyday we just look for the smallest reason to troll people and ridicule them on social platforms, sometimes even forgetting dignity of office, like in the case of the Prime Minister.
Just how is it that when Reliance Communication releases Jio, all media outlets go gung ho bragging about it.
How come never Mukesh Ambani has attracted ridiculing, disrespectful and disgracing media coverage (maybe a little bit during Radia Tapes)?
Is his PR that strong that they ensure every negative coverage is surpressed, and the paid media is seeded with positive PR around him, his wife, his kids, his company, his staff, his mali, his bai?
Itna strong PR toh Modi ka bhi nai hai…
Not saying that he is a bad man, or should get bad things written about him, no one should have to endure that.
But it is food for thought, and not just about Mukesh Ambani, but how media propaganda actually works.
It means to weed out any negative or critical news of a certain object or person, leaving only the good stuff to the public eye.
Kinda, sorta, how in yesteryear’s, the King’s men would get any wrong doings or negative things about the rule to be left out of any written records.
Signing off, I would just like to say that the article is not to bash Mukesh Ambani, but just to wonder over the fact that literally anything we read in the media these days, we cannot really be sure whether it is true or false.
Paid media is no longer a secret, but is something that is a flourishing business. Whether it be sources or the entire article itself, whether it is positive or negative, one is always left to wonder over the authenticity of the material being talked about.
And of course to bring to light that when it comes down to it, media is pretty well owned by just a few powerful people, who can and do use and bend it to their will and need, in order to maintain a good image.
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.