(Picture by Jafar Shameem)
Really! Do the two gentlemen in the picture really want to know why a Bollywood actor committed suicide! Are they aliens from another universe?
Yet the sensation seeking media through its clamorous and raucous representatives keeps the airwaves and the print media busy day in and out debating and hammering the sad event, and a large chunk of us from the same universe follow them with vicarious curiosity! Abhorring and repulsive to say the least! Why has the media jettisoned its morality and rectitude?
‘Aur bhi gham hain zamane mein’ (There are other worldly sorrows)!
Why we, who claim to be adroit and shrewd, have lost our counterpoise and equilibrium? Why do they sensationalize and we succumb to their melodramatic articulations? I will come to this later. Let us now attempt to locate the reasons for the media to sensationalize issues at its whimsy freakishness.
- Those in the news media have a duty to report and investigate stories right and proper backed up with documents, interviews, responsible witnesses, and other primary sources. Most of our Journalists and editors to sensationalize mistakenly or purposely relay false information from unreliable anonymous sources, who use mass media as a tool for retaliation, defamation, victim and witness tampering, and monetary or personal gain.
- ‘News loops’ showing people the exact same thing over and over again, instilling fear through completely ridiculous and unverified sources. As politics have become more polarized, these tactics have become increasingly prominent as news outlets realize how easy it is to push their own agendas on the internet in this fashion.
- Debate of sensationalism used in the mass medium of broadcasting is based on a understanding of its audience, especially the television audience. The idea is not to analyse and verify but to ensure that matter continues to remain, stealing the limelight from other more relevant and pressing issues which are not beneficial and conducive to the ruling constellation whose patronage they seek and enjoy.
- More often than not, news stories become sensationalized for the simple fact that ratings and readership will rise if people find the story interesting. When the facts of a story are exaggerated in order for that particular newspaper or television station to receive a better rating, some of us find it difficult to understand the reality of what was covered.
Overall respect for any form of media has fallen greatly simply because of the use of sensationalism, which can be seen as demeaning to the industry. So the question rises, are sensationalist news stories demeaning and damaging to society? Most people are not even aware of the difference between an average story and a sensationalized one. But the effects of sensational stories can last for a long period of time in society and can change our perception on our otherwise commonplace considerations.
Can we as humble bourgeois alter this current drift? The media necessitates an audience and some of us fall prey to them as gullible fellowship. Let us pause and question the media through non acquiescence of their objectionable proclivities. Let us through various modes and forums raise and pursue those issues which affect our lives in multiform shapes and magnitude.
Some of these issues could be:-
Its not far off when we will ignore the media totally and through our labor acquire and capture data and facts. The airwaves are open and vast and are real time friendly too!
Is it not sensational!
And finally a graffiti on the Berlin Wall! Think it over!
(All pictures and video are by Jafar Shameem)
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