Speaking at the EEMAX Global Conclave & Awards 2016, Managing Editor-in-Chief, Times Now & ET Now, Arnab Goswami poured his heart out on his thoughts on media and journalism.
Goswami spoke about how his experience of covering print, the experience of covering Pakistan, the experiences of taking up people’s stories and making the ordinary person a headline and championing the person made him fundamentally realise that one needs to finally go down to the core. “There is nothing in this business – just a right and a wrong. In everything in life, you have to bring it down to the binary. Don’t tell me about the grey areas. Those people who reside in the grey areas are those who are fooling themselves and won’t stick their necks out.”
Goswami further lashed out at the English news media accusing it of alienating this people of India for the longest time. “They used language that is only available in a dictionary, editorial meetings happened in a sacred space where there is no communication with people outside, and eventually when analytical programs are done, there are more people from abroad than from your own country and speak in a language that nobody understands. That is what English media journalism had done over the years in the last 34 years,” he alleged.
As a journalist, one should have the courage to break stories, he asserted. “Each story that I have done runs a personal risk on me. When you break the Commonwealth Games scam, and you accuse somebody of siphoning off billions of dollars, you take names and you don’t shoot off another media channel’s shoulder stating media reports. I say that you are corrupt, I am sticking my neck out. Behind what seems engrossing, is a lot of heart, a lot of feeling, a lot of soul, a lot of idealism and a lot of risk. And that’s why I seek your support,” he said.
“All television (news) means is one sense of idealism and one camera and an audience – nothing else” he added.
Goswami said that he has been accused of ruining the neutrality of news. However, he feels that neutrality in news is baseless. “In a choice between right and wrong, black and white, when facts are staring you in the face - when a gangrape happens and politicians make insensitive comments, don’t be a fence sitter. Don’t exclude people, don’t exclude your emotions, don’t exclude your opinions, and most importantly, don’t exclude your feelings,” he advised.
Goswami went on to profess about his dream, which he feels will realize very soon. “I will seek your support again; my dream is of an Independent media not answerable to anyone but to itself. Merge the Independent media with digital media, with the power of television that breaks the clutter, which says that nobody can buy my way through if I have a direct connection with my audience. And reach out to the global media. And all this has to be achieved in the next three years. We will challenge BBC and CNN and there should be no reason why we will not be able to do it,” he concludes.