Tag Archives: Sucheta Dalal

Will Indian readers pay to keep their money safe?

For all the talk about the future being digital, the truth is no Indian newspaper or magazine (or website) is making money at the speed and in the quantum that publishers and promoters feel they are entitled to. Worse, no Indian newspaper or magazine (or website) has been able to generate the kind of content…

Will RIL-TV18-ETV deal win SEBI, CCI approval?

PRITAM SENGUPTA in New Delhi and KEERTHI PRATIPATI in Hyderabad write: Media criticism in India, especially in the so-called mainstream media, has never been much to write home about. Operating on the principle that writing on another media house or media professional means exposing yourself to the same danger in the future, proprietors, promoters and…

Niira Radia, Mukesh Ambani, NDTV & Prannoy Roy

In conversation number #132 in the infamous Niira Radia tapes, the lobbyist whose name has become synonymous with the 2G scam, talks to M.K. Venu, then of The Economic Times, in July 2009: Venu: Is Manoj (Modi) is here (in Delhi) today also, no? Radia: Yeah, he is here, he is leaving in the afternoon,…

‘Why Barkha Dutt needn’t return her Padma Sri’

Anurag Batra, editor-in-chief of the exchange4media group, in the industry journal, Impact: “Prabhu Chawla was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 2003. What’s fascinating is that between 2006 and 2009, six journalists were awarded the Padma Sri: Sucheta Dalal, Mrinal Pande, Vinod Dua, Rajdeep Sardesai, Barkha Dutt and Abhay Chhajlani, and one Padma Bhushan, Shekhar Gupta…

The decentralisation of paid-for news begins

The election commission of India likes to pretend that it came to know of the phenomenon of “paid news”—advertisements being slipped in under the garb of news to circumvent expenditure norms— only after recent reports of its widespread use during the 2009 recent general elections. Well, here’s more news for the EC. A journalist with…

It takes 3 Idiots to call the bluff of Pauper Tigers

The prostitution of Indian journalism by pimps, promoters and proprietors selling editorial space without letting the reader know what is independently verified news and what is a paid-for advertisement in the garb of news, has attained pandemic proportions. “Paid News”, as the trend has been sadly named, happens not just during election time, but in…

Does he who pays the piper call the tune?

The media is pilloried, and rightly so, for erasing the line between editorial and advertising. Space sellers are slammed, and rightly so, for allowing advertisers and agencies to run riot. And publishers and editors are pilloried, and rightly so, for not standing up and telling advertisers, agencies and space sellers where to get off. But…

‘The endgame is near for both TV 18 and NDTV’

SHARANYA KANVILKAR writes from Bombay: Indian media houses, generally speaking, have been cagey in reporting the economic downturn and what it is doing to the man (and woman) on the street. They haven’t ignored it, of course, but they have been, let’s say, less boisterous than they were when reporting the boom. At one level,…

Times Private Treaties: the full list of ‘partners’

The following is the full and unexpurgated portfolio of Times Private Treaties, the equity-for-ads investment arm of The Times of India group as on 11 May 2009. The list of clients as per industry has had disappeared from the Times Private Treaties website following the recent media scrutiny, and the Google cache has had also…

Times Private Treaties gets a very public airing

Miracles never cease, and Times Private Treaties (TPT), the investment arm of Bennett, Coleman & Co Ltd (BCCL), publishers of The Times of India group of publications, is suddenly the object of attention with two competing newspapers having chosen Monday, 11 May 2009,to turn their attention on it. The first story by Shuchi Bansal and…

‘Indian media holding Indian democracy ransom’

The Wall Street Journal‘s bureau chief in India, Paul Beckett, has a major piece on the rampant corruption in the Indian media in the ongoing election coverage, with advertising masquerading as news for a fee, and neither readers nor voters being told about the deal. Brokers, he writes, are offering package deals for coverage in…

The Scoreline: different strokes for different folks

The second season of Indian Premier League (IPL), the shotgun wedding of cricket, cinema, celebrity, cheesecake, and commerce, is now into its second week in South Africa, but its influence is alrady being felt not just on the way cricket is played but on the way cricket is covered on the sports pages. The table,…

Pyramid Saimira, Tatva & Times Private Treaties

SHARANYA KANVILKAR writes from Bombay: A nice little question mark hangs over Times Private Treaties, the controversial investment arm of The Times of India group, after India’s stock market regular yesterday barred 230 persons/entities from dealing in the securities market following their “prima facie” involvement in a forgery scam involving Pyramid Saimira Theatre Limited, an…

Sucheta Dalal in public row on private treaties

The true depth of an employer-employee relationship is never quite revealed during the course of the latter’s employment, generally speaking. It is only after the two have parted ways, when the two parties take their gloves off and shadow-box each other, does it become clear whether it was good cohabitation or a charade. India’s bestknown…

Yes, the market is growing, but best practices?

An article in The Economist, London, juxtaposes the growing disconnect between a flourishing media in India and its heavy dependence on advertisers: “More than 350 million literate Indians do not yet subscribe to a newspaper, which, coupled with rising literacy, promises a long-term boom. A recent report by PricewaterhouseCoopers estimated that India’s print industry would…

‘The first casualty of a cosy deal is credibility’

The Times of India group’s decision to make strategic investments in mid-level companies, in return for guaranteed advertising and editorial exposure in the group’s publications and media vehicles, through the quaintly named “Private Treaties“, has had several other media houses following suit. Hindustan Times is said to be well on its way to establishing a…

Forget the news, you can’t believe the ads either

The selling of the news columns in Indian newspapers, a pernicious practice that deliberately blurs the distinction between independently generated news and paid advertisements, has assumed pandemic proportions with language publications unabashedly apeing the market-leader The Times of India, which pioneered the move. But, it now turns out that even paid advertisements are no longer…