The free reign enjoyed by our media especially the immature and novice electronic media which gets almost all its human resources from the press mainly Urdu newspapers. It is no wonder that we observe sensationalization and are forced to see moles as mountains.
Some may recall the insensitive and ridiculous headlines of “Awam – Jang Group” and “Qaumi Akhbar” carried when they came out. They were driven in doing the thrilling act, as they put it, because they operated in saturated markets and it was impossible to make a mark in the presence of giants like Jang and Nawa I Waqt.
Similarly electronic media enterprises operate in similar situations. Their markets are saturated, the reader engagement and loyalty enjoyed by their predecessor, print media, is non-existent as it takes only a click to move from one station to the other.
The task of keeping the viewer at a particular station is proving to be difficult for the clever producers, anchors, editors (not sure there are any) and marketing and sales teams employed to sell air time. The TRPs, GRPs are more colloquially “ratings” have come to dictate more than ethics, training and professionalism.
To make matters worse advertising agencies, marketing companies, brands and businesses have grown clever and instead of spending their resources on mass media they employ them on engagement activities. Thus the outburst of channels has to compete for their slice of the shrinking pie (ad spent). The outrageous rivalry is evident from “breaking news” flashes and “sub se pehle aap tak khabar pohanchai…” clichés. Continue reading “The Media Madhouse” »