What percentage of the audience actually trust what they see on television? How many times have you felt that a particular topic is being inclined to a certain political belief? Have you ever come across a situation where you felt that what you were seeing was sort of fabricated to the advantage of the interests of that media? Have you ever felt that you seem to be viewing more hours of advertising than actual media content?
These are questions that lingers in the minds of media analysists over and over again.
Objective of Analysis
In this analysis, we intend to treat media as a commodity that is being sold to the audience and the media content as a psychological influence on them. It is intended to throw light upon some of the devastating effects of the “business” of media, due to the influence of the corporate control over it.
In the past few days, a brilliant Bollywood film, based exactly on this plundering of the of media world by the corporate society has released, giving rise to a lot of heated discussion in this context. Rann, an Amitabh Bachchan starrer has explicitly shown how the media content on any form of media, is driven by its necessity to survive in this rat race.
It is a well known fact that media houses have to survive based on its cutting edge advantage over its competitors. It is in this unhealthy spirit that a lot of irrational and unethical practices are adopted by these media houses.
This entire vicious circle can be very easily understood. Today, almost all media are owned by huge corporate giants, who have their own vested interests to reach the public. Though not explicitly obvious to the common audience, they influence the content of what is covered when and how it is discussed.
Look at any opinion driven programme on a channel, and you are sure to notice the light in which the opinion discussion goes on. Analyse the advertisements in the newspaper, and then look at the reporting content. If you observe, you will notice, the newspaper will never give negative coverage to its biggest advertisers. It might sound logical to a commoner, since the newspaper has to survive, it will have to deal with the interests and keep in good company, its clients. But is that even ethical? Don’t people deserve to know what the truth is? Isn’t that the very substance on which media’s existence is based on?
Just as the media is owned by a corporate, they also own many other companies and establishments. Thus, the editor of that media, is usually driven by the fact that he cannot show any of the other companies owned by the same corporate also, in negative light.
For instance, while I was working for the City 7 News channel in Dubai, which is the number one English news channel in the region, I was obliged to do a 5 minute story on some jewellery exhibition, which was absolutely not news worthy at all, just because, the show was sponsored by the same group that owns the channel – Bin Hindi. I ethically felt that it was unnecessary for me to do that news piece at all. Similarly, when I was doing a story on the environmental impact of the car garage in a particular area in Sharjah, my story was never let on air, since the garage was owned by Bin Hindi’s cousin brother. This was something that was affecting real people. But due to the vested interests of the higher-ups, the news never reached the people whom it affected at all!
Due to an increased corporate control over the media, we end up at times, not getting the other side of the story at all. We only know, what the media tells us. At times, this is not the real story at all.
For most of us, news means the newspaper and even more majorly an hour of news channel watching in the evening. But if what we are watching is being monitored and censored to such a great extent, we would never know the real picture at all!
Today, the very fundamental basis of “truth revelation” of the media, has been drowned by...