At a time when Rakhi Sawant’s antics get equal news footage, perhaps sometimes even more, than the farmers’ suicides in Vidarbha, credibility of news goes out of the window. In order to take stock of what is wrong (or right) with journalism and news reporting today, Lokmat Times is organising a Media Conclave on March 27 in Aurangabad. The Conclave also marks the English daily’s 21st anniversary on March 31.
Top media personalities will express their views on the topic ‘Journalism Today: Sense or Sensation?’ The distinguished participants at the Conclave include Congress spokesman Abhishek Manu Singhvi; Rajdeep Sardesai, Managing Editor, IBN; Anurag Batra, Editor-in-Chief, exchange4media; litterateur Javed Akhtar; BS Lali, CEO, Prasar Bharati; Nalini Singh, Managing Editor, TV Live; public speaker Suhel Seth; BJP spokesman Prakash Jawdekar; Vijay Darda, Chairman of Lokmat Group of Newspapers; and, Rajendra Darda, Chief Editor, Lokmat Group.
As for the choice of topic for the Conclave, it was felt in several quarters that today media was often blowing small events out of proportion and that ‘Sensation’, rather than ‘Sense’, was driving the coverage.
Thus, we have a Raj Thackeray getting a big boost to his political career with his remarks against North Indians and the media generating a lot of unnecessary heat giving him huge coverage.
Crime seems to have become the hot favourite of TV channels. Recreating crime scenes with all the gory details and over-the-top presentations have become commonplace.
So the relevant questions are – is media losing restraint? Has sensationalism become its obsession? Or does media still play the role of a watchdog of the society? Is media really focusing on issues relevant to national development and espousing the cause of its readers/viewers?
These and many more questions are expected to be raised and answers sought at the Conclave.
Meanwhile, as part of the 21st anniversary celebrations of Lokmat Times, an art exhibition called Shlok-2008 would also be inaugurated in Aurangabad on March 27.
Venugopal Dhoot, Chairman, Videocon Group, would formally inaugurate the exhibition.
‘Shlok’ is a product of Jawaharlal Darda Kala Akademi, set up in Nagpur in the memory of Shri Jawaharlalji Darda, a statesman and veteran journalist, who had immense love and respect for arts.