Monthly Archives: March 2007

Yes, tiny drops of journalism make an ocean

Many youngsters in the media complain of overbearing (older) bosses who frown upon enterprise and put them down. Some despair of being in an ocean of inertia and that their zeal is just a drop that gets submerged. Etcetera. Essentially, the crib is: we are all right, it’s those above us who who aren’t, and…

‘Indian media will outpace economy till 2011’

Forbes has yet another geewhiz story on the size of the Indian media and its growth potential. “Rising incomes and consumer spending fueled by the country’s robust economic growth will combine with expanded information delivery options over mobile phones and the Internet to drive a boom that will benefit all segments of the industry, from…

Deepcut: how patriotic can journos get?

Covering the armed forces, especially their negative side, is a bit of a tricky issue in most countries. “National security”, an assumed sense of patriotism, the threat of access-freeze, and of course, the old boys’ network all combine to prevent reporters from covering what are legitimate stories. In 2002, BBC began looking into the death…

Those who can, blog. Those who can’t…?

Blogs are here, there, everywhere. They have been called narcissistic exercises, echo-chambers of the unemployed, and worse. Indian journalists are not alone in being sceptical of its power to shape and influence society. Till you hear the amazing story of Talking Points Memo. The bloggers used the usual tools of good journalists everywhere—determination, insight, ingenuity—plus…

A prince gets a royal rebuff from a photog

Anecdotes in journalism are usually dark jokes that never fails to delight its practitioners in any part of the world. There is a lovely one in today’s Independent of an encounter between Prince Charles and The Sun tabloid’s royal photographer, Arthur Edwards. Edwards actually admires Charles. When he is walking along a public track near…

‘Who the bloody hell listens to podcasts?’

You won’t find too many non-conformists among editors when all the talk is about newspapers entering the digital age,  pushing hard news online, starting blogs of staffers, introducing podcasts of columnists, etc is the order of the day. And the sooner the better. But Simon Kelner of The Independent has bucked the trend. “I’ve never…

How to get an op-ed piece published

A familiar complaint of editors is that there are very few publishable women writers not counting the usual suspects. To meet the shortfall, author Catherine Orenstein conducts a seminar on how to get an op-ed piece published. “It’s a teachable form,” says Orenstein. “It’s not like writing Hemingway. You show people the basics of a…

Why we must mix religion with journalism

Most of us in Indian media look down upon spirituality, godmen (and women), meditation and everything else that comes under the broad “religion” rubric. Although far fewer follow cricket, we send out correspondents and photographers by the dozen. But covering a congregation, a religious baithak, a rathothsava in the same fashion with the same verve…

V.S. NAIPAUL on newspapers

“To read a newspaper for the first time is like coming into a film that has been on for an hour. Newspapers are like serials. To understand them you have to take knowledge to them; the knowledge that serves best is the knowledge provided by the newspaper itself” Sir Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul 

What are newspapers for: the definitive view

The real purpose of newspapers is increasingly getting clouded. Journalists think that for managements, it is all about piling on more profits. Managements think that for journalists, it is (or was) all about something higher, nobler. What does the reader think? The Seattle Times invited readers to share with it their views on how the…

It’s official: men will be always be boys

A new eyetracking study by one of the world’s best-known usability experts, Jakob Neilsen, has come up with an interesting result: when they look at pictures, the eyes of men gravitate towards the areas of private anatomy—not just of women, but of men and animals as well. Although both men and women look at the…

‘Development is doing, not just knowing’

NAGESH HEGDE alerts us to an interaction with Gerson da Cunha being organised by Communication for Development and Learning, Bangalore, on Friday, March 16. The occasion is CDL’s completion of ten years in development communication. Da Cunha will speak on “Development is doing, not just knowing.” Prof Ashoke Chatterjee, former director, National Institute of Design, …

Is the future online for frustrated journalists?

For print journalists frustrated by the machinations of mercenary managements, and fearful of the rising costs of producing an independent newspaper, Brisbane’s newest publication shows that there may be a way of breaking existing monopolies and reaching the reader without crawling on all fours. Read the full story here: Brisbane’s newest newspaper goes online

45 social science books for a journalist’s library

PRESS RELEASE FROM CRITICAL QUEST: Critical Quest, the new social science library, is pleased to make available the best and relevant of social science writings in India and abroad to individuals, students, teachers and the general reading public. Critical Quest attempts to retrieve and sustain within current discourses, the rational-liberative articulations in history and culture.…

Wanted: freelance international contributors

PRESS RELEASE FROM JEFF YANG: We are looking for part-time freelance international contributors, what we call Cultural Fluents. Candidates should be based in Europe, Asia, Latin America for now, and should be culturally and linguistically fluent in their regions of residence. This job is intended as a second job for someone who already has a…