Category Archives: World Wide Web

“Whatever is being reported by Indian media from Kashmir to show that everything is normal, everything is fine, the opposite is true”

With large sections of Indian mainstream media engaged in the patriotic duty of “manufacturing consent” for the Narendra Modi government’s undemocratic actions in Kashmir, the onus is increasingly on foreign media to provide the real picture, or the closest approximation to it. BBC Radio, for long seen to be “reliable” news provider by previously colonised…

From ‘what’ to ‘why’ and ‘what’s next’: four ways in which robots and Artificial Intelligence will change journalism in the future, according to Bloomberg News’ editor-in-chief

From Johannes Gutenberg‘s printing press to Tim Berners Lee‘s world wide web, and the telegram, radio and television in between, journalism has been constantly shaped and changed by technology—and not always for the worse. In the 21st century, the news media business is grappling, like other industries, with the prospect of machine learning and Artificial…

Pinch yourself: BJP’s Mysore candidate Pratap Simha—a well-read newspaper columnist—had taken out a pre-publication gag order against 49 media organisations two months before “sex audio” went viral today

*** The BJP candidate for the Bangalore South constituency in the 2019 general elections Tejasvi Surya hit national headlines on March 29 when he secured an ex-parte temporary injunction against 49 media organisations from a Bangalore court, after allegations of sexual assault and misbehaviour against him began doing the rounds on social media. After editorials in The Indian…

News connoisseurs to news nibblers: how BBC is approaching journalism in Indian languages with five words fast disappearing from our ‘bhasha’: trust, credibility, strength, depth, quality

If the English market is tough for serious players in Indian journalism, keeping the head above the water in the languages is a humongous challenge. So immense, so expensive, and so impossible is the task of attracting readers and viewers, and keeping them engaged with quality content, that nearly nobody is attempting to do it.…

38% trust news they find in search; 51% trust news sources they use; 23% trust news in social media: Reuters Institute digital media study in 8 graphs

The Reuters Institute for the study of journalism, at Oxford University, has a new report out this June on how digital news is consumed across the world. Here are the salient points of the 2018 Digital News Report based on a respondent size of 74,000 in 37 “markets” in 5 continents.

How Reliance Jio drove data usage, erased the line between content and carriage, and is making life hell for India’s news media

*** In this, the second and concluding part of a two-part excerpt from his new book Freedom, Civility, Commerce, journalist and academic Sukumar Muralidharan turns his eye on the mysterious entry of Reliance Jio, and what it portends for the media. *** By SUKUMAR MURALIDHARAN Statistics may often have no more than transient utility in…

‘A determined political operation has turned new media into a propaganda tool: not pluralistic and interactive, but relentlessly one-way and single-themed’

*** The weaponisation of Indian broadcast and digital media by Hindutva forces has been a key force-multiplier in coarsening the discourse and manufacturing consent, to be encashed at the ballot boxes. In this, the first of a two-part excerpt from his new book Freedom, Civility, Commerce, journalist and academic Sukumar Muralidharan argues that the eagerness…

In the battle against “fake news”, the most admirable Indian in the world says the solution may lie in science, not cosmetic surgery to avoid ‘liability’

As India heads towards epoch-making general elections, the role of “fake news”—as a device to spread lies, untruths, propaganda, hatred, misinformation and disinformation, to change or make up voters’ minds—is on many a lip. In the backdrop of the US elections, social media platforms are making cosmetic changes to steer clear of the law. WhatsApp…

In the tragedy of errors that is Rafale and CBI, former Press Council chief Markandey Katju provides all the comedy, with 48 tweets in four days

A somewhat comical, even if self-serving, side play in the Narendra Modi government’s brazen (and thus far successful) attempts to fool the Supreme Court—not once, but twice—in #Rafale and #CBI, have been the interjections of Justice Markandey Katju*. Justice Katju has tweeted 48 times on or around the “transfer” of CBI director Alok Varma by…

Bangalore is building the “Uber of Journalism” to take passengers to destinations spurned by mainstream media vehicle drivers

Bangalore’s oldest English newspaper Deccan Herald has a special supplement on New Year’s Day ’19, of 19 “change makers”—either a Kannadiga, or someone who embodies the spirit of Karnataka—who are paving the way for a better tomorrow. One of them is Gangadhar Patil, 33, the founder of 101Reporters, which the paper hails as the “Uber…

Reuters’ Modi interview: “Sensational tokenism”

Reuters‘ scoop interview with Narendra Modi published yesterday by the news agency, but apparently given 17 days ago on June 25, has created headlines for the Gujarat chief minister’s continuing lack of contrition for what happened under his watch in 2002. And for his faux pas of comparing the victims to “kutte ka bachcha” (puppies).…

How the ‘Forbes India’ editors were forced out

SHARANYA KANVILKAR writes from Bombay: The abrupt exit last week of the top four editorial heads of the business magazine Forbes India, including of its editor Indrajit Gupta, has swung the spotlight once again on the questionable—but rarely ever questioned—human resources (HR) policies and practices in Indian media houses. In this case, one of India’s…

Free speech gets a major boost (in the a**)

So, young Indians cannot tell their friends in what they like on Facebook, without being “pre-screened” by Harvard types (or hauled into a police station by Shiv Sena goons). So, bloggers cannot publish their “online private diaries” without the sword of 66(A) hanging over their heads. So, tweeters can be blocked and Savita bhabhi‘s enviable…

That was the year that was in the ‘free’ Republic

GEETA SESHU writes from Bombay: The year 2012 ended with a Kannada TV reporter, Naveen Soorinje, in jail for more than 50 days after the Karnataka High Court denied him bail. Mangalore-based Soorinje, was incarcerated on November 7, 2012 after police charged him under the UAPA and under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for reporting…

The man who hasn’t read a newspaper for 5 years

Nikhil Pahwa, the editor and publisher of the media website Media Nama, is among the “37 Indians of tomorrow” in India Today magazine’s 37th anniversary issue. The 29-year-old digital journalist paints a scary picture of the future for dead-tree media professionals who still latch on to the innocent belief that their word is gospel. “The…

Prabhu Chawla, Pritish Nandy & Modi 87:13

Narendra Modi‘s detractors (and drumbeaters) went into overdrive recently when The Times of India reported that 46% of the Gujarat chief minister’s one million Twitter followers were “fake”, 41% were “inactive”, and only 13% were “good”. TOI used a newly launched internet website to check fakers on Twitter to arrive at the numbers. Status People…

‘The exclusive Indian political news delicacy’

The Indian bureaucracy is a major journalistic niche, especially in Delhi where a number of magazines (Governance Now, Bureaucracy Today, etc) and websites (Gfiles, Whispers in the Corridor, etc) have sprouted to help readers navigate their way through the thickets of redtape. A display ad for the website Sarkari Mirror appears in Mail Today.

In which Julian Assange gives it to MasterCard

20 secure phones to assist in staying anonymous: $5,000 Fighting legal cases across five countries: $one million Upkeep of servers in over 40 countries: $200,000 Donations lost due to banking blockade: $15 million Added cost due to house arrest: $500,000 Watching the world as a result of your work: priceless. Also read: How The Hindu…

The Times of India, Indiatimes.com and IPL-4

Not so long ago, a much-feared Indian publisher who shall go unnamed wanted the broadband expansion in India to be slowed down because, well, it would woo readers away from his newspaper to the world wide web. Well, the times, they are a-changing. Last month, Indiatimes.com, the internet arm of The Times of India group,…

Kannada Prabha uses reader-generated headlines

“Interactivity” has been the buzzword in the English media for over a decade now. Readers have always written letters to the editor in the past, but now they also do film reviews, shoot and caption pictures, draw cartoons, ask and answer questions from other readers, take part in citizen journalist shows, post realtime comments by…