Monday, September 6, 2010

Journalism Vs Activism

Whoa its been quite sometime I've been off the radar. Yes thank you people for missing me. I was pretty busy in my media ethics assignments and blogging on mediabaithak that I  visit my scribble book for whole month!

Well now I'm back and I promise it was worth the wait. Sharing with you people is a piece I wrote for Media Baithak blog. A lot more is yet to come!

Simply put in an equation:
Journalism – Ethics = Activism

Journalism is a noble profession but sadly, Activist Journalists have choked the dignity of this profession.

Journalism is about reporting of facts. Its about bring out the truth to the people with honesty and responsibility. Its about following certain ethics, it requires objectivity. Its about writing with your heart and passion, not for the money.

There is a fine line difference between journalism and activism. Journalism is about digging and bringing out the facts for the target audience/reader or viewer as the case maybe. It involves investigation and reporting of events, issues, and trends to a broad audience.

Activism is an action or inaction to bring about social or political change or to form an opinion on a certain issue to influence the minds of your reader mostly on a controversial argument. An activist is a person who has his influence over other people because of his charisma and who forms perceptions in the minds of the people through his views.

Living in an age where we see media organisations fighting over each other in the race of TRPs, READERSHIP OR listnership, WE have seen a new breed of journalists... The Activist Journalists.. people who actually journalists but acting like activists! These people are expected to bring the truth on the surface but actually they are giving their own views to the public.

A lot of anchors and hosts have been formulating their own opinions rather than finding or highlighting the solutions from the debates. the main concern comes is about the trust factor. Audience still trusts media which is busy formulating opinions for them. Instead of "I'm going to give you the facts" its "I'm going to give you my views" This ultimately results in a major shift in the society that can ravage people against the govt. laws even.

After the airblue crash, we saw a lot of controversies these activists tried to manipulate, although investigation of concerned authorities was being conducted and nothing documentary evidence was there.

Summing up, media needs to stand under the umbrella of journalist ethics and assume its responsibility very carefully. A journalist looks back in the past and feels proud whereas an activist feels guilty deep down inside for the misuse of his opinions and positions. Journalists must always aim to be removed from the issues they are covering. They must avoid becoming emotionally and politically involved, because once they do they are likely to lose their objectivity. They should provide the basis for a healthy and robust public debate. All journalists will have their own political points of view, but these must never creep into journalism and they must not have any bearing on the choice of stories they cover or the way they cover them.


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