Campaign India Team
Jun 09, 2009

Anant’s blog: News channels like peas in a pod

I’m a news junkie – and I get continuously amazed by news media in India. Some background to this blogpost. In a conversation, many years ago, with Ajay Chacko of Network 18 and now of Forbes India, he encapsulated the task of the editorial team in any news organisation. “The environment throws up a finite number of news stories. What each newspaper, magazine or news channel chooses to carry and how the item is analysed and presented is what differentiates one from the rest,” he said. 

Anant’s blog: News channels like peas in a pod

I’m a news junkie – and I get continuously amazed by news media in India.
 
Some background to this blogpost. In a conversation, many years ago, with Ajay Chacko of Network 18 and now of Forbes India, he encapsulated the task of the editorial team in any news organisation.
 
“The environment throws up a finite number of news stories. What each newspaper, magazine or news channel chooses to carry and how the item is analysed and presented is what differentiates one from the rest,” he said.
 
Which, if one thinks of it, is a lot of scope for differentiation.
 
Which is why, as I said in the first line, I get continuously amazed by news media.
 
On the morning after India’s win over Bangladesh and the Leander Paes-Dlouhy win at the French Open, the three leading English news channels, CNN-IBN, NDTV 24X7 and Times Now (that’s in alphabetical order) all had the cricket story ahead of the tennis one. ALL.
 
Was there an opportunity to be different?
 
All three English news channels have a sports magazine program at the same time each morning as if that is the only slot when sports lovers are available.
 
Is there an opportunity to be different?
 
But these are minor issues.
 
Big news events, such as 26/11 or an air crash or an  assassination or man landing on the moon offer the biggest opportunities for differentiation despite the fact that none of these stories could be exclusive to anyone. How is the story treated, presented, analysed?
 
Like, how is the great Melbourne-hates-Indians story on each channel?
 
No different from the other or the other or the other.
 
Is there an opportunity to be different?
 
Yes. What if there was a channel which tried to build a bridge between the Indian students and the local communities? What if there was a channel which helped the Australian authorities present a more humane face rather than look for the odd word or phrase which presents the authorities as Indian hating racists?
 
That’s the channel I would watch…..

Source:
Campaign India