Monthly Archives: August 2010

‘Better to be over-fair than not give full picture’

Pulitzer Prize-winning Wall Street Journal reporter and author of The Cure, Geeta Anand, in an interview with Meher Marfatia in Housecalls magazine: Q: Are there are any rules for rookie reporters coming wide-eyed into the field? A: I’d dvise young journalists to write the truth as it is, not like a movie screenplay. Never lie…

The light goes out of Selvan Shiv Kumar. RIP.

sans serif records with a heavy heart the passing away of photojournalist Selvan Shiv Kumar in Bangalore today. He was in his early 40s and had been ailing for some time. He is survived by his wife and son. Shiv Kumar had worked in The Times of India, Deccan Herald, Hindustan Times and DNA in…

What’s in a name when it’s all about a soundbyte

The veteran sports writer Nirmal Shekar in The Hindu: A well known sportsman told me four or five years ago that a young television reporter chased him for half an hour after a practice session for an ‘interview.’ Finally, she got lucky and the sportsman obliged. “OK, shoot,” he said. “No sir, just give me…

Look, what I got my wife on our wedding day

Stranger things have happened to journalists, of course. But for R. Uday Kumar (seated, right), a reporter with The Times of India in Mysore, it all happened on the same day, 22 August 2010. Uday tied the knot to K. Nitya Darshini on Sunday morning. Mid-way through the nuptials, Uday rushed out of the marriage…

For a few TV rating points more, a life was lost

Mail Today, the tabloid newspaper owned by the India Today group (which also owns the Hindi TV channel Aaj Tak), reports that two TV journalists have been arrested named in Ahmedabad for coaxing a man to immolate himself outside a police station in front of their cameras. The journalists—Mayur Raval and Kamlesh Raval—belonging to TV9…

Well-armed gunmen shoot unarmed woman

On World Photography Day, visitors write thousands of words to the background music of a fountain at Lal Bagh in Bangalore on Thursday. Photograph: Karnataka Photo News 2009: A lensman’s eyes reaches parts others’ eyes don’t 2008: With so many legs, who on earth needs a tripod? *** Also read: Is the end nigh for…

EXCLUSIVE: Unpublished doodles of R.K. Laxman

The hand of India’s most famous newspaper cartoonist, R.K. Laxman, rests in a hospital in Bombay without a pen or pencil in its grip. Not even sure if (or when) it will regain the strength to pick up a pen or pencil to regale the millions who have woken up to the magic behind its…

The 2010 Shakti Bhatt first-book prize

PRESS RELEASE: In its third year, the Shakti Bhatt first-book prize is a cash award of Rs one lakh. Entries in the following genres may be submitted: poetry, fiction (including graphic novels), creative non-fiction (travel writing, autobiography, biography and narrative journalism) and drama. A thee-member advisory board will shortlist six books published between 1 June 2009 and…

Why the internet won’t replace newspapers—III

At a rally organised by the Congress party in Bellary on Monday, upon the culmination of a fortnight-long pada yatra (foot march) from Bangalore, 320 km away, members of the audience use newspapers to protect themselves from the searing sun in Sonia Gandhi‘s former constituency. Photograph: Karnataka Photo News Also read: Newspapers as wall paper…

What K.M. Mathew could teach today’s tykes

By T.J.S. GEORGE Being famous is different from being important. The trimurtis of English journalism in India–Pothan Joseph, Frank Moraes, M. Chalapathi Rao–are still unequalled in their star value and brilliance of writing. But historically they mattered little because they introduced no movement that transformed their profession. Devdas Gandhi of Hindustan Times and Kasturi Srinivasan…

Why ToI was right to use The Last Supper motif

The Times of India printed this 8-column illustration by Neelabh in late July, to accompany a story on galloping food prices in India, and, following complaints from Christians, published an apology three days later. Allwyn Fernandes, the Times of India‘s former chief reporter in Bombay and now director of media practice and social engagement practice…

The Daily Beast prize for South Asian journos

PRESS RELEASE: Tina Brown‘s portal, The Daily Beast, and the US-based non-profit organisation Open Hands Initiative have announced a new prize for South Asian journalists and writers covering the region. The aim of this prize is to promote and support the work of an individual who has contributed thoughtful, important, and engaging commentary on the…

15 things you didn’t know about K.M. Mathew

The passing away of the doyen of Malayalam journalism, Kandathil Mammen Mathew, better known as K.M. Mathew, on Sunday has resulted in a rare outpouring of coverage, with Indian media proprietors burying their usual pettiness about competitors to salute one of their own. So much so that the news of the death of the chief…

K.M. Mathew, chief editor, Manorama, no more

sans serif records with regret the passing away of K.M. Mathew, the rubber planter who became chief editor of Malayala Manorama and founding editor of the newsweekly magazine, The Week. The end came in his residence in Kottayam this morning. Mr Mathew was 93 years old, and is survived by three sons—Mammen Mathew, Philip Mathew,…