Friday, September 26, 2008

Not such a great profession after all?

Journalists in India are better paid than ever before, but job satisfaction is on the decline. TV news channels with their increasingly bizaare content are an affront to the intelligence of the journalists who work in them. If you can make your peace with dubious ethics, shrieking anchors for bosses and seeking new angles to long-broken stories, you can survive there and earn your six figure monthly salary. Competition has put a premium on low cost news, so at many news channels news gathering for genuine stories is low priority.

In newspapers the problem is not a bald one of practising dubious ethics to earn the ratings, it is the more subtle challenge of working your way past each major newspaper's sensitivities. In the Times of India you learn to watch out for the sensitivities of advertisers and its Private Treaties partners. Occasionally if you get uppity your nose might be rubbed in the mud a bit, just to show you that management is boss. Otherwise, you have the editorial freedom that other newspapers in the city might not have.

The Hindustan Times has seen quite an exodus in recent months of both editors and staffers, and is poised to get two new editorial bosses, the chief editor being a business journalist. Here the problem tends to change with each new editor incumbent, but the basic problem is that the newspaper pretty much has its ideology set. It is pro-Congress and in states where its owners have business interests it is pro establishment, and you are expected to toe the line set by the proprietors. The management is used to calling the shots, even in editorial decisions. If you work there,you have to live with the limitations.

The Hindu had a clear ideological line until the CPM decided to make common cause with the Bharatiya Janata Party, leading the paper to embrace the BJP as well. After years of being pro-UPA and pro Left, its correspondents now cringe a bit when they see the BJP office in New Delhi displaying front page interviews in the Hindu with L K Advani, on its notice board. Earlier you had to be careful about your reporting and editorializing on account of the Left, now you have to watch out for both the Left and the Right. There are editorial decrees on both counts. And these days editorial staff there amuse themselves by counting the letters to the editor on the nuclear deal to see how many pro and how many anti letters will be carried.

The Telegraph in Delhi suffers from low visiibilty and too many people, given the editorial space available. Pressure of space is a problem in every newspaper, you could wait upto a month to see your story in print, or you can see it killed for lack of space. That makes for added frustration. The froth-filled pages in many of the newspapers are growing in number, the pages available for news are not. With newsprint prices high, travel and other newsgathering costs are increasingly being curtailed.

There is a sort of consensus in the profession that if don't mind a paltry salary you can go to Outlook where the atmosphere is not bad, if you don't mind low circulation you can go to the Express, where you can pretty much write what you like, and get paid well too, at least in the Delhi edition. If you don't mind not being read at all, you could go to the Statesman where again you can pretty much write what you want, but getting paid might be a problem.

Courtesy :

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Guys with half baked information and misinformed are spreading incorrect news. Here is one such mail I got from a person who I dont know. The basic fact that proves that the information in the mail in largely incorrect is at the bottom of the mail.
--- On Fri, 12/9/08, rammohan kandlakunta wrote:
> From: rammohan kandlakunta
> Subject: Fw: Who owns India Media
> To:
> Date: Friday, 12 September, 2008, 4:26 PM
> --- On Sun, 3/8/08, saridena rahul
> wrote:
> From: saridena rahul
> Subject: Fw: Who owns India Media
> To:
> Cc:
> Date: Sunday, 3 August, 2008, 7:23 AM
> Dear Friends
> As per your request im hereby forwarding the e-mail to you.
> Lets keep in touch
> regularly and share our views,News together and do something great
> for ourselves, our religion, nation and the world at large.
> thanks & Regards
> rahul
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > *Who owns the media in **India** ?*
> >
> > There are several major publishing groups in India ,
> the
> > mostprominent among
> > them being the Times of India Group,the Indian Express Group, the
> > Hindustan Times Group, The Hindu group, the Anandabazar Patrika
> > Group, the Eenadu Group, the Malayalam Manorama Group, the
> > Mathrubhumi
> group,
> > the
> > Saharagroup, the Bhaskar group,and the Dainik Jagran
> group.
> >
> >
> > Let us see the ownership of different media agencies.
> > *
> > NDTV*: A very popular TV news media is funded by
> Gospels of
> > Charity in Spain
> > Supports Communism. Recently it has developed a soft
> corner
> > towards
> > Pakistanbecause
> > Pakistan President has allowed only thischannel to be
> aired
> > in Pakistan .
> > Indian CEO Prannoy Roy is co-brother of Prakash Karat, General
> > Secretary of the Communist party of India.His wife and Brinda Karat
> are
> > sisters.
> > *
> > India Today *which used to be the only national weekly
> who
> > supported BJP is
> > now bought by NDTV!! Since then the tone has changed drastically and
> > turned into Hindu bashing.
> > *
> > CNN-IBN:* This is 100 percent funded by Southern
> Baptist
> > Church with its
> > branches in all over the world with HQ in US. The
> Church
> > annually allocates
> > $800 million for promotion of its channel. Its Indian
> head
> > is Rajdeep Sardesai and his wife Sagarika Ghosh.
> > *
> > Times group list:*
> > Times Of India, Mid-Day, Nav-Bharth Times,Stardust , Femina,
> > VijayaTimes, Vijaya Karnataka, Times now (24- hour news channel)
> and
> > many more.. Times
> > Group is owned by Bennet & Coleman. 'World Christian Council' does
> > 80 percent of the Funding, and an Englishman and an Italian equally
> > share balance 20 percent. The Italian Robertio Mindo is a close
> > relative of Sonia Gandhi.
> > *
> > Star TV:* It is run by an Australian, who is supported
> by
> > St. Peters
> > Pontificial Church Melbourne .
> > *
> > **Hindustan** Times*: Owned by Birla Group, but hands
> have
> > changed since
> > Shobana Bhartiya took over. Presently it is working in Collobration
> > with Times Group.
> > *
> > The Hindu:*
> > English daily, started over 125 years has been
> recently
> > taken over by Joshua
> > Society, Berne , Switzerland . N.Ram's wife is a
> Swiss
> > national.
> > *
> > Indian Express: Divided into two groups*.
> >
> > The Indian Express and new Indian Express (southern
> > edition) ACTS Christian
> > Ministries have major stake in the Indian Express and latter is
> > still with the Indian counterpart.
> > *
> > Eeenadu: *Still to date controlled by an Indian named Ramoji Rao.
> > Ramoji Rao is connected with film industry and owns a
> huge
> > studio in Andhra
> > Pradesh
> > *
> > Andhra Jyothi: *The Muslim party of Hyderabad known as
> > along with a
> > Congress Minister has purchased this Telugu daily very recently.
> > *
> > The Statesman:* It is controlled by Communist Party of India.
> >
> > *
> > Kairali TV: *It is controlled by Communist party of
> India
> > (Marxist)
> > *
> > Mathrubhoomi: *Leaders of Muslim League and Communist leaders have
> > major investment.
> > *
> > Asian Age and **Deccan** Chronicle*: Is owned by a
> Saudi
> > Arabian Company
> > with its chief Editor M.J. Akbar.
> >
> > Gujrat riots which took place in 2002 where Hindus
> were
> > burnt alive,
> > Rajdeep Sardesai and Bharkha Dutt working for Star TV
> at
> > that time got
> > around 5 Million Dollars from Saudi Arabia to cover
> only
> > Muslim victims
> > which they did very faithfully. Not a single Hindu
> family
> > was interviewed or
> > shown on TV whose near and dear ones had been burnt alive, it is
> > reported
> > *
> > Tarun Tejpal of *<*
> >
> **Tehelka*.com> F%2Ftehelka%2Ecom%2F&isImage=0&BlockImage=0>
> > regularly gets flat check from Arab countries to
> target
> > BJP and Hindus
> > only, it is said.
> >
> > The ownership explains the control of media in India
> by
> > foreigners. The
> > result is obvious.
> >
> > Is this what our country forefathers envisioned in the consitution ?
> > It is one thing the media says they are mouthpiece of such
> and
> > such
> > organization, and talk about it. But another when
> they
> > misuse the freedom
> > given and pose as National Media when they are simply
> paid
> > agents,
> > propagandists. It is time all Indians take notice. In
> the
> > end everyone
> > suffers.
> >
> >
> >
> > --
> > Thanks & Regards
> > Rahul
> > (M) 9346629169
Facts : NDTV is a public limited company. The details of its shareholders is a public document and is available on stock code 532529

India Today is part of the TV today network which is a public limited company the details of its shareholders are there in

CNN-IBN is part of IBN18 which is a public limited company. The point that it is funded by Southern Baptist Church is baseless the details of its shareholders is available at stock code : 5328000

Vijay Times and Vijay Karnataka are owned by Vijay Mallya.

I stay in Andhra Pradesh and I am not aware of any Congress Minister and MIM leader buying Andhra Jyoti.

Deccan Chronicle is owned by Deccan Chronicle holdings limited. Details of its shareholders are available on, stock code : 532608 and MJ Akbar is no longer the Editor-in-Chief of Deccan Chronicle.

These are just few examples to prove that this is a malicious campaign by those who want to project that Indian media is 'bought over'. Before saying that so and so foreign company has invested one should know the fact that as on today no foreign investor can own more than 26 percent of the equity.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

C&S Digital: Some surprises for Hindi news channels September 09, 08

TAM Media Research has given the Indian media industry quite a bit to chew on by segregating the digital data from the analog one. So far, even as TAM Media Research has been measuring the digital households that have platforms like DTH, cable set-top boxes and IPTV, TAM was releasing consolidated data. exchange4media readers would recall that in the Hindi general entertainment channels’ space, the digital data had some interesting trends to throw. The Hindi news space turns out to be no different.
Hindi General News: One’s loss is other’s gain
The overall C&S data shows three channels competing in the top rung. These are Aaj Tak, India TV and Star News. One look at the C&S Digital data and it is clear that Star News falls significantly behind in digital homes. Needless to say, benefiting from this is Zee News, which even claims the third slot at times amongst the digital viewers.
The story is similar between NDTV India and IBN7. In the overall scenario, IBN7 competes very closely with Zee News to occupy the No. 4 or No. 5 slot at times. In digital homes, IBN7 loses significant ground and moves between the seventh or eighth position, which houses the bottom rung of channels. The benefiter here is NDTV India, which smoothly occupies the No. 5 position in digital homes.
Another player that loses out in digital homes is News24. The channel otherwise has been occupying the seventh position amongst the cable and satellite television homes. It is followed by Samay. Lagging behind these channels are Live India and DD News. Tables turn completely in the digital space for this rung of channels. Live India and DD News score higher amongst digital households, while News24 and Samay fall right at the lowest rung.
On the C&S Digital data, Live India and DD News move at least three notches up.
Hindi Business Channels: Changing leaders
Even as Hindi general news channels have quite a few players with at least 10 significant channels targeting a broader market, the business space still sees only two key players – CNBC Awaaz and Zee Business. On the overall ratings, CNBC Awaaz has managed to stay ahead of Zee Business week on week. CNBC Awaaz, too, scores on the digital data and scores enough to throw numbers better than some of the general news channels such as IBN7, News 24 and Samay. However, Zee Business scores better in some weeks.
A senior media analyst put the digital numbers in perspective and explained, “The overall numbers that we see when we do a simple run on just the C&S target without getting specific with analog or digital includes the numbers of both. When a channel is doing better on the overall and not in digital homes, then it has the opportunity to focus on that area. If they can change the trends there, the overall trends too should see some difference. That said, digital homes are less than 7 per cent of the overall homes right now, and so these are still very small numbers to say anything conclusively.”
However, the digital numbers wouldn’t be so small considering with players like Big TV entering the fray and Bharti DTH all set to join this domain.


Monday, September 8, 2008

On which TV was Chiru on 26 Aug?

Week 35 saw one big event in the political and the television history of Andhra Pradesh. Chiranjeevi announced his political party at a public meeting. Lakhs gathered at Tirupathi on August 26 to witness the event but millions were glued to the television set to watch the first ever live performance of Megastar. The real real reality show was watched on television by the State with all the news channels telecasting the show live.

TAM analysis of the five news channels from 1400 hrs to 1930 hrs in C&S 4+ All Sections on August 26 has NTV on the top with 34.35 GRPs, TV9 at 30.7, ETV2 at 27.38 and TV5 at 9.91, and Gemini News at 3.98 GRPs.