Rulers in particular are ready to pay anything from say, an year's anticipated profit of a highly circulated news paper or much viewed TV channel, for a single effective news item in their favour, during election time!
If they would put pro opposition / neutral stories also they would get a good reward from major opposition groups, but run the risk of losing govt Ads in the event of present rulers winning again!! These are all supposed to be no secrets, only the ''rate'' varies, season to season, depending upon the sharpness of contest!
Lesser periodicals with medium circulation would also vie withe each other to draw attention of the parties by their critical ''analysis'' wherefore, they would be promptly given attention and generous rewards showered, to tone down their pungency of a lapse or step up criticism of the opponents, as the case may be!
There is abundant freedom to destroy the ethics of journalism and swim in total liberty, with the only mandate to do good business, even as politicians and tradesman in other sectors do! Rarely they do get into problems with some hostile parties by provoking them too much with their materials.
The case of Dinakaran Daily in Tamilnadu, losing two of its employees in a mercenary attack that set fire to the office is a striking example! So too much hostile stuff is best avoided. Other wise, there is no curb on negotiating terms for ''treatment of contents'' of news or staying away from taking sides in politics !
This is only for so called ''neutral'' or so called apolitical media. There are any number of party magazines and TV channels which would flash known partisan versions and people know how to take them. There is full freedom to lose the rewards from...