It is very well known that media can turn white into black and vice-versa. Let us start with a short story, you might have come across it in your childhood, the story goes like this – ” There was an emperor, who asked his tailor to stitch a dress for him which should be unique in itself. Now, the tailor becomes very confused and perplexed as he is unable to come up with an idea to make the dress unique. The plot changes and the tailor tries to play arrogant and sharp. He goes to the emperor and says, oh my lord, I have stitched a dress for you which is found nowhere on this planet. He presents his dress and says, the specialty of this dress is that, only intelligent and intellectuals can see this dress. It was not visible to anybody present there in the assembly. As, the tailor said that only intellectuals can see this, the king cannot say that it is not visible or he cannot see this, because if he does so, he will be termed as a fool, and asks the tailor to bring it to his room, so that he can try it. Before the king comes out, it is been told to everybody that the king’s dress is visible to those who have brain and fools cannot see that. The king comes out which pride and the people start appreciating and cherishing the king’s dress. Here, the dress is actually not there, but people have made their mind that it is there, after they are told so. The tailor and the king made people trust something, which is actually not there”.
Similarly, MEDIA does the same to people. The viewers are made to trust what are being shown on their channel, no matter whether that is fake or not, whether there is discrepancy in facts or not. Media can turn black into white and white into black. An innocent can be proved as one of the most dangerous terrorists even though, there is no sentence passed by the courts in the particular matter of that innocent man by the court. THE ONLY JOB OF MEDIA IS TO TELL THE NEWS! In India, media is known as the fourth pillar of the democracy whereas there is no other democracy in the world, which terms media as their pillar. There is nothing called democracy in the media. If we talk about another power of media, it can destroy the territory, can put it into utter ruin, a well example for this can be weapon of mass destruction of Saddam Hussein, the report was prepared by the media and shown on television, furtherance to which, Britain, America and their allies together attacked and later concluded that the dosage, which was prepared was prepared by a theology student of 10th standard for his class practical and it was used by mistakenly by them. But see how media molded it and showed that the missiles from iraq can be launched at any moment and it may fall into American territory and destroy lives of many civilians. So, media can destroy not only an individual, but a country as well. It has the power to turn a villain into a hero and a hero into a villain. It can spread the misconception towards any community.
2. Professional Ethics
This topic should be deliberated well so that people can have better understanding about media. Today we’ll see what is code of journalistic ethics and professional morality. Ethic is something which we all are supposed to perform and follow. which professional has professional ethics like doctors engineers chartered accountants so this journalists should have one such. Every profession there are certain things certain rules certain benchmarks which are need to be followed which is traditional and good for the society.
Media is played as a fourth state in democracy we have three others like legislature executive and judiciary. Now India have placed with them as a fourth state in a democracy. So, Try to understand the kind of prestige, kind of status given to the media that means what is the role as a watchdog in a democracy media should play now if you yourself or we are self intermedia are not ethical then how do we point finger on others so let us follow the ethics first so that we deliberate well.
Now the basic reason that media has to follow ethics is not that the other professions also have to follow but it is because of the very fact that the media is going to public at large in no time that is instantly and directly. So if I am talking to you and it is going on air and something goes wrong there’s nobody to check and in case of print also it goes to the public at large which even government also cannot, it is only in India which has direct connectivity instant connectivity to a large number of people in the country so we have to be extra cautious.
3. Public Opinion
Media does not only go straight to the public or its impact is irreversible, suppose I present something wrong and some effect is generated which is irreplaceable or irreversible. So, I can say sorry later but the fault are the problem which erupted out of it would have erupted by that time. So, it also helps in making public opinion so any wrong thing been given the public opinion at large will be formed on the basis of that wrong so it’s not only me who will be at fault it will be a large number of people because they are wrongly informed they will opine wrong live which will be detrimental to the society. Now this strength of of instantly and going directly to the public gives us the strength and also gives as more responsibility which we should undertake.
4. Ethical Responsibility of Media
Now basically what do we understand by the ethical responsibility by the media it’s basically 3 things;
- Objective- We have to be objective in disseminating news and information that means it has to be based on material facts and figures. Specially news and current affairs because when there is no chance of fiction it has to be based on material facts and figures it has to be true and objectives.
- Fair– It has to be fair when we presented that means it has to have a fair presentation of it has to be transparent that we don’t have any hit and agenda and between the lines with don’t want to repeat something else it is straightforward presentation of facts and figures.
- Balanced– It has to be balanced. If there are multiple orders for different people, different Indians to present all the possible opinion together, people to the reader, and the listener so that they can form an unconcerned opinion on the basis of the views of all sides of people of all sections available to them. So making the views of all sections relevant to particular news item available to the public is our duty. So it has to be balanced like government off position. Like there are two bodies fighting each other so there are two agencies so both the sides we have to give multiple sides which we have to give all the versions of which call in our day to day media.
5. Fact is Sacred, Comments are Free
The journalism students are taught that fact is sacred comments are free, yes this is true the mantra which is followed in the traditional media practice and I believe that this is still relevant and it will still be relevant till the media exists and media gets a very high position in the society. Changes are taking place but basically the disseminating news this is the mantra that objectively without giving any personal perception we have to present the facts and figures as it happens to our audience.
Thanks to the development of digital technology you have something called hot switching which is digital satellites news gathering, which means that anchor is asking questions from the studio and the reporter is there on the spot answering to the questions. Now in this process of conversation which brought life to the audience what happens is reporter answers with his own perception and with the perception of the channel he or she works, so now there is a lot of perception oriented opinion is coming on air which was earlier not possible because the technology was not there now with the advent of new technology which made this hot switching the life conversation between the anchor in the studio and the reporter at the spot possible is making the shift in the content that which was earlier totally objective and now it is the views of the reporter, perception of the reporter, so this change in the technology has driven net to the content we have to be little careful on this.
7. Media Ownership
What is media ownership? By and large it is private. You cannot run a small community in his paper for small community media, that’s an different issue altogether. But the mainstream media is big, operationally it is a big industry otherwise it will not survive. So big industries and big business have business norms like profit maximizing. So it will go whatever possible for profit maximizing and definitely business agenda and the media houses may have political agent of supporting a particular political party. So these are the few things which have come in but we have to remember one thing that Yes! Media is a consumer product to some extent but it is a social good to it is not like any other consumer product and even in other consumer products. We also see that standards have to be kept and you know transparency have to maintain, so here also I believe that ethical standards have to be maintained definitely otherwise the society will reject however big you are.
8. Self Restraint
This is something on which ethical discussions and deliberations will tell you that what does self-restraint mean and what you should not do and where do you should stop what is the Lakshman Rekha, nobody else will tell you that this is the Lakshman Rekha you yourself should be able to evolve the Rekha which is invisible but followed to the nill.
So the best practice is one of the self restraint methods that we have seen others doing. The ethical practice which question ourselves whether it is ethical or not, no unnecessary media hype, we have to be objective balanced fair and no unnecessary sensationalization. We all suffer from sense sectionalisation because of business reasons, because of catching more eyeballs, because of increasing our readership and drawing attention which is our survival but again we shall know that where the Lakshman Rekha lies and where we have to stop.
9. Media: Boon or Bane
As an Indian student, I have been witnessing timely changing in things around my surroundings. These changes include things like an old Nokia phone with best features for calling, to the new smartphones ranges, which include everything, ranging from calling features to camera, with internet and 4G facilities, now even 5G. My generation has been a witness to other changes also, just like the huge growth within the Media Industry. From Television to Newspapers, from Radio to Internet, media plays a crucial role in every sector of the show business. Though media has been criticized for his or her bold and straight-forward approach within the society, we cannot neglect the benefits that it brings with it. I still remember few incidents, which were initially neglected, but gained popularity with the continued news channels, and newspapers. test paper leaks, robbery and various other crimes, are informed by the media, with the assistance of television, newspapers, Internet and radio.
There are number of the benefits of media as well, these are:
- Quiz Programs: The varied quiz programs like KBC ( Who will be the Millionaire), are very informative and academic for college kids like me. We get to understand various facts and also increases our public knowledge.
- Internet: Referred to as the planet wide web, Internet has raised the bar of technology over the years. It’s reduced the space between people over the years, and also increased our knowledge. Every sort of news are available here.
- Consumer Products: Every sort of consumer products are showcased with the assistance of advertisements in our televisions and newspapers, which helps us to make a decision, which product matches our requirements.
But the above advantages, don’t neglect the disadvantages of the media, which are as follows:
- Misuse of Internet: Though Internet informs us about the newest happenings of the planet, it doesn’t always provide the ‘good’ information of the society. Sometimes, spending and dalliance within the internet, are often harmful for youngsters and students.
- Addiction: Some television programs, if addicted can pose a significant problem for youngsters. Spending an excessive amount of time watching movies and serials, can affect their studies and growth.
- Health problems thanks to Addiction: Prolonged view of Internet and television, also can cause eye-sight problems, and obesity among children of varied age groups.
Thus, before concluding the article, I might wish to say that Media are often both boon or bane, counting on our usage. If we use it intelligently, it’ll be useful in gaining knowledge and for best impact. Also some stunts in movies, and tv are copied by people, which results in major accidents in our society. Thus, we should always be sensible while choosing, and choose whatever is best for us.