VRL Media launches Kannada news channel, Dighvijay

This follows the success of Vijayavani as a premier newspaper in Kannada in Karnataka

exchange4media Staff 17-April-2017

VRL Media launches Kannada news channel, Dighvijay

Following the success of Vijayavani as a premier newspaper in Kannada in Karnataka under the guidance of Dr. Vijay Sankeshwar and spearheaded by Anand Sankeshwar, VRL Media launched DIGHVIJAY, a 24x7 Kannada News channel on April 5, on the occasion of Ramanavami. Dr. Channasiddharama Panditaaradhya Shivacharya Bhagavaddararu, Karnataka State BJP President and Former CM of Karnataka, BS Yadyurappa launched the channel in the presence of Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda, Former Minister MV Rajashekaran, film star Ramesh Arvind, Music Director Ricky Kej and other dignitaries in Bengaluru.

Vijayavani, launched on the same day of Ramanavami 5 years ago has seen stupendous success at being No.1 newspaper primarily due to wide array of thought provoking articles on national issues, political thoughts with near accurate content on the ongoing issues in the state, country and globally. The channel under the able guidance of Managing Director, Anand Sankeshwar, is equipped with the latest technology and infrastructure. 

“I always wanted to see a Kannadiga launching a Kannada news channel. Now with Dighvijay, my desire is realised. We in the past have heard families getting destroyed due to watching television. But we want to prove them wrong through our TV channel,” said Dr. Vijay Sankeshwar. Thanking the readers in accepting Vijayavani as their newspaper, he sought support of people to show the same faith and trust in the TV channel.

“(The channel has) No commercialisation and it’s purely commited towards society. I am extremely happy with Dr. Vijay Sankeshwar and his work.  If you find functionality in your work, you will succeed,” said Jagadguru Dr. Channasiddharama Panditaaradhya.

Speaking at the function, Former CM, Yadyurappa said Dr. Vijay Sankeshwar has been a model for thousands of young Indians. The BJP President showed confidence about the TV channel and said it will provide the much needed direction to the audience in search of truth.

In his address to the gathering at the inauguration, Managing Director, Anand Sankeshwar said they shall leave no stone unturned in providing what the audience wants through true journalism.

The highlight of the event was the creation of Ganesha through brush by internationally renowned Speed Artist, Vilas Nayak.

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"This bride has many suitors," says Dr. Subhash Chandra

Dr. Annurag Batra, Founder & Chairman of exchange4media group, in conversation with Dr. Subhash Chandra, Chairman, ZEE & Essel Group, on Zee’s plans ahead.

Annurag Batra 1 day ago

ShubhashChandra

Two days ago, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) announced that its promoters will sell up to 50 per cent of their stake in the company to a strategic partner. The stake sale is being done for disruptive technological advancement and to transform the company into a media tech firm. The promoters currently hold 41 per cent stake; which means they will divest up to 20 per cent of Zee’s equity. The market is abuzz about Zee’s plans ahead. The company, which recently announced its financial results for FY18 Q2, posted a strong 24.9 per cent jump in the operating revenue in this quarter. Not just that, its OTT platform, launched earlier this year, is believed to be doing extremely well.

In the backdrop of all this, Dr. Annurag Batra, Founder & Chairman, exchange4media group, spoke to Dr. Subhash Chandra, Chairman, ZEE & Essel Group, about Zee’s plans ahead.

Excerpts:

Dr. Chandra, you are a pioneer. You see things before anyone else sees it. So if Dr. Chandra decides to sell a part of his company to be future ready, it becomes headlines. Are you seeing something that others are not?

I definitely believe that others are not yet seeing what I can see. But I am sure they will see that slowly. I understand that it's not only this medium, but virtually every single business is going to change because of the way technological developments are happening in every single field. Even a construction company will have to rework their entire organisation and the working structure because of technology.

For example, call centres have a very simple job. My prediction is that five years from now, nobody will be working at call centres. There will be robots and machines answering calls. In the next 5-8 years, one billion people will be rendered jobless globally. So everybody has to reskill now. Even the education system should be restarted with a fresh approach. As a member of the Upper House, I am going to raise this issue. The education has to be future ready.

Tell us specifically about media content.

Coming to media again, because of augmented reality and virtual reality, there will be a convergence of mobile, computer and other screens. It will not be just an audio & video medium in future. It will be a full-fledged market. And you will get whatever you need in this marketplace.

So you are saying content will be the glue that will create commerce, and services will be distributed using mobile screens.

Right, that's exactly what will happen.

Tell us about Zee5. In the last 12 months, it has touched the 50 million-plus subscriber mark. You have said one of the reasons to do this (stake sale) is to be able to work with technology partners to go global and increase ARPUs. Let's say, if a tie-up happens in the next 6-7 months, what will be the new ZEE like? What will be different from what we have now?

We know how to make the best of content at the best of price. And this doesn't mean that the popular perception of Zee spending less on content is true. It's not true. Zee knows the expenses; the cost of equipment and the cost of artistes and studio. Our mindset and DNA is of a content maker, whereas the Netflixes and Amazons of the world, Amazon particularly, have a trading mentality.

Our people did an analysis of Netflix's Scared Games in one of the monthly presentations, and concluded that the same show with the same artistes would have been done by us 40 per cent cheaper. And yet my producer would have had 15-20 per cent growth. We have managed to do it in the international market. Today, we are running 12 foreign language services in the international market. In Germany, which is a very mature market, we already have 1.5 per cent market share with our content from India repurposed and redirected with subtitles and dubbing. We have also started producing half an hour of original Russian content and two-hour per week content in Arabic language in the Middle East. We are doing every bit.

Zee will look at the partnership to get converged into a techno media company which has a global presence, catering to American, Spanic, Brazilian and other major foreign languages. And this will include OTT.  In India, we have 500 million Zee5 subscribers and we feel we can add an equal number of people internationally with the partner. I would say we will add 100 million-plus South Asians, and in the next 7-8 years, another 400 million mainstream video watch on OTT.  So it will be an unbeatable and unparalleled media distribution company which will get the kind of value that we can never get in India.

So, are you saying that you will get listed abroad at some stage?

Yes. Why not? That’s why I am saying it will be a very different company 7-10 years from now. I can see that happening. 

 

There is a huge speculation about who will be your partner. Various names are going around. Would you like to share? Also, what would you look for in the partner?

I would say that this bride has many suitors. We know what we want; we want a technology partner with technology superiority and the mass & muscle to help us fulfil our dream of becoming a global media company.

The chemistry between two people doing business is very important. Have you already found this chemistry?

We have bankers; and one of them is international banker Goldman Sachs and the other is American banking advisor LionTree. So we have had this discussion. If it's American cooperation, we have to agree on a business model on the basis of what both of us expect 5-10 years from now. Once we figure that out, it's easier for this marriage to succeed. If you see our past record, we have had good partnerships.

You said American, so is it Amazon or Google?

No, I am saying that if it's American, we will have do the same exercise of agreeing on the direction again. An American cooperation would have a separate kind of expectation from future whereas a Russian company has a separate set of thinking. We have to align, and once it's done, there is no problem, particularly with Amit (Goenka) and Punit (Goenka) mostly running the company.

During discussions with me, you have always looked at two companies, Disney and Discovery.

Discovery is a traditional media company and has vast distribution globally. And I love the company for that reason. We are one step behind them in terms of the number of eyeballs globally. They have 1.5 billion and we are at 1.3 billion. On the other hand, Disney has a vast array of offering that nobody has in India. They have amusement parks, cruise ships, children programming and much more.  

What do you think about Rupert Murdoch partnering with Disney?

Their objective was that ‘I can’t fight with this big techno media company who is spending billions in programming’. But my feeling is different. He would be the single largest shareholder of Disney with 5 per cent holding and he has the right to choose the successor of Bob Iger. He is a smart businessman. To my mind, he has bought Disney rather than selling.  

What do you have to say about Jio and its strategy of buying all distribution companies?

As a telecom company, they have done really well. Even their competitors say ‘we never thought the way Jio thinks’. They admire them.

What if Mr. Ambani and Mr. Chandra come together?

You never know what would happen. I will not name any one. It's early.

Few predictions for future?

Technology will change the business. By 2055, India will become a 100-trillion dollar economy and number one globally, because the demographics are in its favour. It will surpass China and America and that will be hell of a lot for any kind of business.

(With inputs from Sonam Saini)

Annurag Batra is a serial entrepreneur, media mogul, a journalist and an eternal optimist rolled into one. He is a B. Tech in Computer Sciences, a degree, which he acquired before joining Management Development Institute MDI Gurgaon (Now its Gurugram), one of India's leading Business School. He is a first generation entrepreneur and after acquiring the iconic business media and magazine brand BW Businessworld. a 35 year strong media brand as well as most respected business publication in the country.

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Star Plus regains top spot in urban market: BARC Week 45

Zee Anmol continued to lead both overall and rural market

exchange4media Staff 2 days ago

barc

Zee Anmol continued to lead the overall market with 812 million impressions, followed by Star Utsav on the second slot with 666 million impressions and Star Bharat on the third spot with 660 million impressions, according to Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India Week 45 data.

Zee Anmol’s Kumkum Bhagya lead the top five programme list in Week 45 with 13.1 million impressions, followed by Colors’ Naagin3 on the second slot with 12.7 million impressions. Zee Anmol’s Mahek stood on number three with 11.9 million impressions. Zee TV’s Kundali Bhagya and Kumkum Bhagya bagged fourth and fifth slots with 11.3 and 9.7 million impressions, respectively.

Hindi GEC Urban

Star Plus regained its leadership position in the urban market. The channel registered 430 million impressions and was followed by Colors on the second slot with 402 million impressions and Sony Entertainment Television on the third slot with 401 million impressions. Zee TV and Star Bharat bagged fourth and fifth spots with 387 and 315 million impressions, respectively.

Colors’ Naagin3 continued to dominate the list of top five programmes in the urban market with 8.4 million impressions. Zee TV’s Kundali Bhagya bagged the second spot with 6.8 million impressions followed by Kumkum Bhagya on the third spot with 5.6 million impressions. Star Plus’ Star Parivaar Awards 2018 and Kulfi Kumar Bajewala stood at number four and five with 5.6 and 5.1 million impressions, respectively.

Hindi GEC Rural

Zee Anmol continued to lead the rural market with 667 million impressions, followed by Star Utsav on the second spot with 467 million impressions and Sony Pal on the third with 426 million impressions. Star Bharat and Dangal TV stood on the fourth and fifth positions with 344 million and 327 million impressions, respectively.

Zee Anmol’s Kumkum Bhagya continued to lead the list of top five programmes with 11.0 million impressions followed by Mahek on the same channel at the second slot with 9.8 million impressions. Star Utsav’s Rabba Ve stood on the third spot with 5.8 and Sony Pal’s Taarak Mehta Ka OOltah Chashma on the fourth spot with 5.7 million impressions and Gutur Goon on the fifth slot with 5.6 million impressions.

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Sumit Awasthi all set to join ABP News as Consulting Editor this week

Network 18 Deputy Managing Editor Sumit Awasthi had resigned from his post in September

Abhishek Mehrotra 2 days ago

SumitAwasthi

Network 18 Deputy Managing Editor Sumit Awasthi, who had resigned from his post in September this year, has completed his notice period with the channel. According to information available with exchange4media, Awasthi will join ABP News as the Consulting Editor this week itself. 

ABP News is expected to soon start airing promos of Awasthi’s new show. It is being said that Awasthi will lead the channel's coverage on the days of state election results.  

Talking about Awasthi, Avinash Pandey, COO, ABP News Network, said, "Sumit is a very reputed journalist. I have personally seen some of his work and have worked with him earlier. We are very happy that Sumit is joining ABP News soon.”

Awasthi, who started his career with Zee News, has close to 22 years of experience in the filed of journalism and has worked with some of the top media houses in the country. He is one of the well-known news anchors today and has helmed several big prime-time shows on Aaj Tak and Zee News.  

Prior to joining Network 18, Awasthi was Resident Editor at Zee News, where he served a short stint of 11 months. Awasthi has also been associated with Aaj Tak for almost five years where his last-held designation was Deputy Editor. His major forte has been in the realm of political reportage, but he has also extensively covered cricket and international affairs too. 
 

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We are looking to bring technology partners: Subhash Chandra on ZEEL stake sale

Essel Group plans to divest up to 50% of its stake in ZEEL

exchange4media Staff 4 days ago

subhash

Subhash Chandra-led Essel Group is looking to divest up to 50 per cent stake in the Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL). 

“It has been decided to undertake a strategic review of Essel's shareholding in ZEEL with a view to maximize value for the business. The proposed transaction to divest up to 50% of Essel's holding to such a partner, is expected to address the Essel Group's capital allocation priorities and will allow ZEEL shareholders to capture the full value of India's largest entertainment broadcaster with an ever strengthening bouquet,” the company said in a statement.

“Essel has decided to appoint Goldman Sachs Securities (India) Ltd. as their investment banker and US and European based LionTree as an international strategic advisor for this exercise,” it added.

Talking to exchange4media exclusively, Dr Subhash Chandra shared, “This is a stake sale as we are looking to bring technology partners. And as part of that, we may offload a stake. We are the leaders in the South Asia diaspora and audiences and we plan to stay like that. We are making the business even more future ready.”

The statement mentioned that Subhash Chandra and family along with its advisors met in Mumbai over the Diwali weekend to undertake a strategic review of its businesses in view of the changing global media landscape.

The strategic review underscored the importance of technological advancements such as AI, lOT, 3D printing AR, VR and more.

“There is informed recognition that the world is convergent today and the lines across media, telecom, manufacturing and technology are thinner than ever. The semi-conductor business also appeared to be a promising opportunity, but due to its large capital requirement it was ruled out. It was observed that these developments will impact virtually all businesses across sectors and business practices will be driven by technological innovation. The review showed that the family needs to accelerate efforts to stay ahead of fast changing trends,” the statement said.

The review noted that with the current 1.3 billion viewers and close to 50 million digital viewers growing at a fast pace, ZEEL is well placed to benefit from current market trends due to its strong brand and bouquet of domestic and international channels.

“Adding to that strength, ZEES will further enable the company to leverage the benefits of changing video consumption trends, contributing significantly over the coming years. The management of ZEEL under Punit Goenka and Amit Goenka has been well appreciated by all stakeholders and reflected in the performance of the company,” read the statement.

Speaking on where the business stands today, Jawahar Goel said, "Punit and Amit have made the right sustainable investments for the future and the business is growing ahead on all fronts in a focused and disciplined way." 

The statement further mentioned, “On its own, ZEEL would remain a leader in both linear and digital distribution. It has the consumer insights and knowhow to produce and deliver content for the South Asian diaspora globally. The management depth the company has built over last two decades distributing content globally in 12 foreign languages puts the company in a unique position. It has strong revenue streams including advertising and subscription - domestic and international. However, there is recognition that a right global strategic partner will help in transforming ZEEL further, and maximise long term value. It will transform it into a global media-tech player with a unique offering of content to the main stream audiences in 170 plus countries putting it into a king position globally.” 

Essel expects the outcome of the strategic review to be concluded by March/April 2019.

“We hope that this transaction will meet the objectives of the Essel Group as well as the minority shareholders of ZEEL. India remains a priority market for Subhash Chandra and the Essel Group and the family believes that India is at the cusp of significant growth. The family will continue to invest in growth opportunities in India. Regardless of the outcome of this exercise, Essel is committed to create significant long term value in ZEEL and shall keep on contributing in every possible way going forward,” the company said. 

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Zee TV replaces Star Plus as the leader in urban market: BARC Week 44

Zee Anmol continued to lead the overall and rural markets

exchange4media Staff 5 days ago

barc

Zee Anmol continued to lead the overall market with 809 million impressions, followed by Zee TV on the second slot with 790 million impressions and Star Bharat on the third spot with 758 million impressions, according to Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India Week 44 data.

 

Zee Anmol’s Kumkum Bhagya lead the top five programme list in Week 44 with 13.0 million impressions, followed by Zee TV’s Kundali Bhagya on the second slot with 12.7 million impressions and Colors’ Naagin3 on the third slot with 12.3 million impressions. Zee TV’s Kumkum Bhagya and Zee Anmol’s Mahek stood at the fourth and fifth positions with 10.8 million and 10.5 million impressions, respectively.  

 

Hindi GEC Urban

 

Zee TV replaced Star Plus at number one position in the urban market with 472 million impressions. Star Plus fell to the second spot with 450 million impressions. Sony Entertainment Television took the third spot with 421 million impressions. Colors and Star Bharat stood at the fourth and fifth spots with 416 and 365 million impressions, respectively.

 

Colors’ Naagin3 continued to dominate the list of top five programmes in the urban market with 8.2 million impressions. Zee TV’s Kundali Bhagya bagged the second spot with 7.6 million impressions followed by Kumkum Bhagya on the third spot with 6.3 million impressions. Star Plus’ Kulfi Kumar Bajewala and Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai stood at the fourth and fifth positions with 6.3 million and 6.1 million impressions, respectively.

 

Hindi GEC Rural

 

Zee Anmol continued to lead the rural market with 656 million impressions, followed by Star Utsav on the second spot with 473 million impressions and Star Bharat on the third with 393 million impressions. Sony Pal and Dangal TV stood on the fourth and fifth positions with 377 million and 339 million impressions, respectively.

 

Zee Anmol’s Kumkum Bhagya continued to lead the list of top five programmes with 10.8 million impressions followed by Mahek on the same channel at the second slot with 8.6 million impressions. Star Utsav’s Rabba Ve stood at the third spot with 6.3 and Dangal TV’s Ramayan on the fourth spot with 6.1 million impressions. Zee Anmol’s Ek Main Aur EK Tu bagged the fifth spot with 5.8 million impressions.


 

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Zee Kannada unveils new brand proposition & identity

The new brand image was revealed by Rocking Star Yash at the Zee Kutumba Awards 2018

exchange4media Staff 5 days ago

KannadaChannel

Zee Kannada has unveiled a new brand identity and launched its HD channel. The unveil and launch took place at a grand ceremony at the Zee Kutumba Awards 2018, where Rocking Star Yash did the honours of launching the refreshed brand image with the entire Zee Kannada family.

Based on insights from extensive consumer research, Zee Kannada understood that the Kannadiga woman has always been nurturing and caring, but her canvas of expression for ages was limited to a homemaker, the channel said in a statement. However, now she is partnering, mentoring and leading the transformation in her home and in the society. The evolution in society has stretched this canvas of possibilities for her. She sees more & more women exploring and experiencing the new. Her only challenge being the pressures of conditioning, people’s opinions and self-doubt that maybe pulls her back from exploring these possibilities to the fullest of her potential.

Building on this consumer sentiment and with the objective of giving the channel’s viewers that innate spark to break their limits in their mind and open doors to possibilities, Zee Kannada has revealed its new brand proposition, 'Bayasid'dha Bāgilu Tegiyōṇa', which translates to ‘Open Doors to Possibilities’, to inspire viewers, especially women, to take initiatives and rise above circumstances to craft their own destiny.

Zee Kannada’s shows have always been about characters who break the limits of their mind. Be it fiction or non-fiction, each and every creation by the channel inspires millions to break their own limits and stands as a platform that open doors to extraordinary possibilities; be it the story of Kamali who didn’t let her origins limit her ambitions, or Geetha not letting her obesity be a limitation when it comes to winning the love of her husband. Each of Zee Kannada’s content, characters & creations unite to inspire women every day, with the energy to un-limit the limits set by conditioning, open the doors of their mind and achieve the extraordinary.

Commenting on the new brand identity, Raghavendra Hunsur, Business Head of Zee Kannada said, “Over the last 12 years, Zee Kannada has earned the dominance of being the entertainment hub in the Kannada television market. With a refreshed brand purpose, we strive to inspire our viewers to break their barriers and look beyond their limits to achieve the unachievable. Synonymous with the Kannadiga pride, Zee Kannada will stimulate women with progressive and onward-looking entertaining content, featuring bold and determined characters that echo the channel’s new brand image. We are bringing new shows and extending our prime time shows on weekends to amplify the viewing experience. Our fiction shows will be taking dramatic turns to bring alive the brand proposition and the journey going forward is going to be very exciting and inspiring.”

He added, “We are also glad to announce on this occasion the launch of Zee Kannada HD, which was much desired by our viewers and we are hoping to enhance their content viewing experience further with the HD Channel.”

Echoing the new brand positioning of Zee Kannada, the channel will undergo a transformation with the key existing fiction and non-fiction shows. Kamali, Brahmagantu, Jodi Hakki, Subbalakshmi Samsara, Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Season 15, and Shree Vishnu Dashavatara will witness significant plots that would bring alive the brand promise. A new fiction show launch is scheduled for later this year – Paru, the story of a poor girl falling in love with a rich boy and having to overcome limitations in a home that thrives in a strong class conflict scenario.

As part of this campaign, Zee Kannada will bring to life its refreshed brand promise with a brand film that showcases a housewife who breaks the limits in her mind and learns how to ride a two-wheeler, to get her daughter to her tuition classes on time; how her husband is supportive of this decision of hers and how this new opportunity contributes to the betterment of the family, forms the crux of the film. The lilting background score to the film has been sung by Bombay Jayshree.

Zee Kannada is accompanied by a brand-new logo, and a refreshed look for the channel on-air, as well as off-air. Zee Kannada’s new logo and packaging is based on the theme of radiance that transforms, bursting with inspiring energy, enthusiasm and warmth.

The campaign breaks with an extensive multimedia plan, unfolding across television, trade, print, radio, outdoor, mobile, cable, digital and on-ground events, for over 8 weeks, covering the length and breadth of Karnataka – all 30 districts, including 8 major towns, ensuring a top-of-mind recall in the minds of the audience.

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Star India publishes rate card as per TRAI Tariff Order

The network is also planning to launch four channels by December 31, 2018

exchange4media Staff 5 days ago

star india

After the Supreme Court dismissed Star India's appeal challenging the tariff order of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) paving way for implementation of the tariff order passed in 2017, the network has published its Rate Card as per Tariff Order and Interconnect Regulations 2017.

The network has also announced the MRP of soon to be launched channels by December 31, 2018 which includes two sports regional channel Star Sports 1 Telugu and Star Sports 1 Kannada along with two Hindi movie channels Star Gold Thrills and Star Gold Thrills HD.

Star is offering 28 bouquets with four different variations to cater to the diverse consumer segments based on their consumption:

- i) Base- A Bouquet that brings to you the best of entertainment, sports and movies channels in your language of choice (“Base Offering”).

ii) Premium- On top of Base Offering, Premium Bouquet includes English language offerings and Channels with a differentiated content proposition that some of our consumers would love to opt for (“Premium Offering”).

iii) HD-Base- Base Offering with superior viewing experience (includes HD channels for the corresponding Base offering wherever available) catering to viewers of High Definition channels.

iv) HD Premium- Premium Offering with superior viewing experience (includes HD channels for the corresponding Premium offering wherever available) catering to viewers of High Definition channels.

Click link to see full list:

https://www.startv.com/media/2797/rate_card_rio_filing_dt05112018.pdf

Early this year, Star had approached the Apex court questioning TRAI’s jurisdiction to frame tariff order on the grounds that the authority has no jurisdiction on content as that actually comes under Copyright Act and not TRAI Act.

The appeal was filed against the fractured judgement passed by a two-judge Bench of Madras High Court comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar. The bench had given a split verdict. Justice M Sundar had ruled in favour of Star. Commenting on the judgement delivered by Justice M Sundar, the Supreme Court order stated, “I am unable to agree with the conclusion of M. Sundar, J. that the provisions of the impugned Regulation and the impugned Tariff Order are not in conformity with the TRAI Act. In my view the impugned provisions neither touch upon the content of programmes of broadcasters, nor liable to be struck down.”

“However, the clause putting cap of 15% to the discount on the MRP of a bouquet is arbitrary. The said provision is, in my view, not enforceable. In my considered view, the challenge to the impugned Regulation and the impugned Tariff Order fail,” the order read further.

The 2017 Regulations prevented the mixing of pay channels and free to air channels in a single bouquet.  The Regulations restricted placing high definition format and ordinary format of the same channel in the same bouquet.  Another restriction was that a bouquet of pay channels should not contain any pay channel where the Maximum Retail Price is more than Rs.19/.
 

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ZEEL’s Ashish Sehgal gets new role as Chief Growth Officer

The change of designation comes as a result of dissolution of Zee Unimedia, a vertical that was set up to boost ad sales monetisation by the broadcast network in 2016.

exchange4media Staff 1 week ago

AshishSehgal

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) has promoted Ashish Sehgal, the former Chief Operating Officer, ZEE Unimedia,  to the position of Chief Growth Officer. The change of designation comes as a result of dissolution of Zee Unimedia, a vertical that was set up to boost ad sales monetisation by the broadcast network in 2016.

Having served a stint of over a decade at ZEEL, Sehgal was earlier handling the sales function of the network in the capacity of Chief Sales Officer, till 2016, when he was shifted to Zee Unimedia. Prior to that, Sehgal had spent close to six years with Star India as Vice President. He was last heading all India sales for Star Gold in 2006, when he moved to Zee as Branch Head (North).

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Arnab Goswami’s father passes away

Retd. Colonel Manoranjan Goswami breathed his last at a hospital in Mumbai around 12.45 am on Friday.

exchange4media Staff 1 week ago

ArnabFather

Arnab Goswami, Editor-in-Chief of Republic TV, has lost his father. Retd. Colonel Manoranjan Goswami breathed his last at a hospital in Mumbai around 12.45 am on Friday.

In a brief message to media, Arnab Goswami said his father had been battling illness for a long time. The mortal remains will be taken to Guwahati, where the last rites will be performed on Saturday.

Retd. Colonel Manoranjan Goswami had been a member of the BJP. He was the party’s Guwahati candidate in the 1998 Lok Sabha elections. He is also well known as a journalist, writer and a nationalist thinker.

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu has expressed condolences on the demise. In his message, Naidu said Retd. Colonel Manoranjan Goswami’s demise is an irreparable damage to the literature world of Assam.

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BBC launches international anti-disinformation initiative

The Beyond Fake News project will be launched on November 12.

exchange4media Staff 1 week ago

BBCLogo

The BBC will be launching Beyond Fake News project on November 12 with the release of findings from original BBC research into how and why disinformation is shared. Around the globe, disinformation has been seen to cause social and political harm, with people having less trust in the news, or in some cases being subjected to violence or death as a result. The BBC’s Beyond Fake News project aims to fight back with a major focus on global media literacy, panel debates in India and Kenya, hackathons exploring tech solutions and a special season of programming across the BBC’s networks in Africa, India, Asia Pacific, Europe, the USA and Central America. 

The research comes after users gave the BBC unprecedented access to their encrypted messaging apps in India, Kenya, and Nigeria. 

The Beyond Fake News media literacy programme has already begun delivering workshops in India and Kenya. It draws on the BBC’s pioneering work to tackle disinformation in the UK, where digital literacy workshops have also been delivered to schools across the country.    

Talking about the project, Jamie Angus, Director of the BBC World Service Group, says, “In 2018, I pledged that the BBC World Service Group would move beyond just talking about the global fake news threat, and take concrete steps to address it. Poor standards of global media literacy, and the ease with which malicious content can spread unchecked on digital platforms mean there’s never been a greater need for trustworthy news providers to take proactive steps. We have put our money where our mouth is and invested in real action on the ground in India and in Africa.” 

“From funding in-depth research into sharing behaviours online, to rolling out media literacy workshops globally, and by pledging to bring BBC Reality Check to some of the world’s most important upcoming elections, this year we’re carving our path as a leading global voice for spotting the problems, and setting out ambitious solutions,” Angus said.

The Beyond Fake News Season

Fake or real, truth or lie, transparent or deliberately misleading - how can you tell the difference? And what can you do about it to help build trust?  These are the problems the BBC explores in the Beyond Fake News season. This season will include Fake Me, a documentary revealing how far young people will go in pursuit of social media perfection, as well as the in-depth story of what happened when WhatsApp turned one Indian village into a lynch mob. There will also be reports on Russia’s disinformation campaign, how Facebook is being exploited in the Philippines to spread false information, and a debate with the world’s big four tech firms on what role they play in stemming the spread of fake news.  The season brings stories from across the world on TV, radio and online drawing on the expertise of the BBC’s international network of journalists. 

Programmes & Documentaries
•    Global: From Delhi, 12th – 15th November 

Matthew Amroliwala takes BBC World News’ Global on the road through India, exploring what happens in a world where fake news goes viral, and trust is the victim. He’ll be talking to tech giants, politicians, school children and Bollywood actors.

•    Beyond Fake News – Tech Giants, 12th & 17th, 18th November

The tech giants Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, and Google are brought together to discuss the fake news crisis and the roles their platforms play in the problem, and the solution. Matthew Amroliwala hosts.

•    The She Word: Fake Me, 10th November  

From Insta-face to jeeps and bling to full-on faking it, millennials in Africa are living on ‘likes’ as the social media world expands, sometimes going to extreme lengths to clock up the clicks. Using the Instagram look, the content, the followers and the tech to transform her online profile, BBC challenges one Kenyan student, a 21-year-old social media ‘virgin’, to go from private to public, and see if she can fake it - in just five days.

•    BBC Click: Kosovo’s Fake News Factories, 10th November 

Eighteen months ago Kosovo's fake news factories were running at full steam - fuelled by the country's excellent connectivity and its young tech-savvy population with few other job opportunities. Since then, Facebook has been aggressively targeting such operations. We go back to see how successful this crackdown has been and how the fake news game has changed.

Features
•    “Deepfake” video manipulation, 14th November  

When you’re not always seeing what you think you are - Matthew Amroliwala picks up new languages the easy way, but not without a little help from “Deepfake” software programmes that turn fiction into reality, making ‘fake video’. This technology could present opportunity for but also dangers. 


•    Explainer: Why a Fake News story spreads, 12th November  

How does fake news get onto your feed? Zoe Kleinman explores how fake news goes viral, the role of social network algorithms in its spread and how automated bots push false stories to millions. How easily are legitimate publishers tricked into repeating false news, and why are we the public so willing to share stories we see on social media?

Special Reports 
       India/Asia Pacific 
•    An interactive data project mapping the violence fuelled by false rumours in India 

From the BBC India team in Delhi, they have scraped hundreds of newspapers to compile data on violence and lynchings driven by social media and messaging apps in India.

•    What happened when WhatsApp turned one Indian village into a lynch mob, 12th November   

The story of Nilotpal and Abhishek. Mini-documentary on two men lynched after rumours on WhatsApp suggested they were child abductors.

•    The people behind the spread of fake news in India, 12th November 
The BBC’s Vineet Khare meets some of the people behind the Facebook pages and websites accused of spreading fake news across India.

•    Thailand’s victims of fake news “law”, 13th November

Four years after the military coup, Thailand may return to democracy with an election next year. But political activity is still limited and critics are being increasingly threatened with cyber security laws that often use the "fake news" crutch and carry prison sentences. For the BBC's Beyond Fake News season, the South Asia correspondent Jonathan Head meets people who are facing legal threats for speaking out against the military government.

•    Fake news and the Philippines, 12th November

Howard Johnson travels to the remote archipelago of Batanes to understand how supporters of the late Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos have been exploiting Facebook to spread fake news and help his family stage a political comeback.

Africa
•    Somalia: Media freedom under attack, 12th November  

Somalia is one of the most dangerous places in the world to be a journalist and media outlets are being closed down for publishing information, or what their critics call ‘fake news.’ As part of the Beyond Fake News season, Fergal Keane reports on the fallout.

•    BBC Africa Eye – new investigation, 13th November

BBC Africa Eye will broadcast its latest investigation.

Russia/Europe
•    Debunking Russia’s ‘information noise’ operations, 12th November

A lab in Tbilisi has been using untested lethal drugs to experiment on Georgian citizens, the Russian Defence Ministry announced last month. But the claims were false - aimed at distracting attention away from Moscow's involvement in the Skripal poisoning and embarrassing revelations about a failed Russian cyber-attack on the global chemical weapons watchdog (OPCW) in the Hague. Steve Rosenberg visits the lab for our Beyond Fake News season, and looks at how Russia uses fake news to spread disinformation.

Middle East
•    How a fake news law is being used to crack down on dissent in Egypt, 14th November

Five months ago, Egyptian actress Amal Fathy logged on to Facebook and posted a video alleging that she had been assaulted by Cairo police officers. Two days later she was in jail, accused of “spreading false news”. Fathy, who was later sentenced to two years in prison, is the latest in a growing list of Egyptian dissidents prosecuted under the government’s new fake news laws. Sally Nabil looks at the effect of the crackdown and how US rhetoric around fake news is being abused as a powerful tool of repression abroad.

USA/Americas 
•    Mexico lynching report, 12th November

Two innocent men are pulled from a jail house by a mob and burned in the street after WhatsApp rumours warning of child abductors - a report on how fake news can grip a small town where violent crime goes unpunished.

Also showing as part of the season:
•    “Operation Infektion”, 11th November 

Operation Infektion, by the New York Times, is an enthralling history of fake news, or what the KGB used to call, “active measures.” With testimony from former Russian spies and US officials, the film deconstructs some of the most successful “fake news” operations of recent times, from the 1980s lie that Aids was created by the CIA, to the so called pizzagate conspiracy during the last Presidential election. This is disinformation warfare laid bare.

•    From Our Own Correspondent, 12th November

From Our Own Correspondent will be bringing its mix of stories, insight and analysis to Delhi for a special edition of the programme presented by Anu Anand. Reporters in the region will reflect on what’s real and what’s not.  

•    BBC World Questions: Delhi, 14th November

BBC World Questions will host a debate in Delhi allowing the public audience the chance to put their questions directly to a panel of politicians and opinion formers. With support from the British Council, the programme visits a different city around the world each month, and provides a public forum for open debate and an opportunity to explore claim and counter claim in front of an audience.  

•    Why Factor:  The Fact Checkers, 12th November

Sandra Kanthal will speak with fact checkers from Turkey, the Philippines and Brazil to find out what motivates them to combat fake news, especially in countries where speaking truth to power comes with considerable risk.   How do they do this difficult job, and why are they so determined to improve the skills all of us can use to call out false claims?  

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