Media-Boon or Bane

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India's first newspaper, the Bengal Gazette, appeared in Calcutta on January 29, 1780, an occasion now celebrated nationally as Newspaper Day. The transformation in the India media scene in the intervening 230 years, in keeping with the changes in the country as a whole, has been enormous.  

The communications revolution, television, economic liberalization and an expanding social base ushered in a new phase of media growth.. The media today wields immense power, shaping the national agenda.  

While there are admittedly fine journalists and some excellent writing, there is a lot of conjecture in place of fact and lazy journalism marked by shallow writing, inadequate research, ignorance of background and context.

Are your eyes weary of the staggering billboards across every corner in the city?   You might get dizzy over those topsy-turvy rows of pawnshops, dress shops, bakery and stalls competing for consumers’ attention with their different styles and propriety presentations along the highways.   Most of the ads are propagandas of multinational companies ranging from clothing lines, fast food chains and the enticing perfumes among others.   Some find them okay because they’re big fan of the endorsers.   Others will question, “Why are those people endorsing those products”.  

      After a long day at school, you rush going home and go to your room switch on the radio and let yourself be serenaded by the songs.   You might not notice, but the radio ads consume almost half of the programs.   Few ads might be informative and others are just dangling and irritating.   You might want to switch on the TV afterwards to watch your favorite soap operas.   With the very dramatic scene you’re watching, you can’t help but cry or laugh if the scene is hilarious.   Sometimes you feel like your in love again after witnessing an intimate setting with the actors.  

      Have you tried buying toothpaste and you were confused what to buy?   After a...
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