Stop engaging with Godi Media

The Indian Media is no longer impartial and their motives are anything but honorable. So there is no point in engaging with them anymore.

The heckling of some reporters that took place during protests against the government in these past few days is regrettable and it does no one any good. But it also highlights the built-up frustration of many against these media outlets who have not let go of any opportunity to malign the protesters in ways that are condemnable and repugnant.

While it is natural to be furious and hurt by what our media is doing to the hard-earned democracy of this country and to its citizens, it is high time we realize that most our print and TV media has become nothing more than pawns in the hands of our government that is being run by the elected members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), a government that does not hesitate to use it as a part of its propaganda machine to further their own interests.

That does not mean that we just sit back and let them get away with the crime that they are committing. We must always endeavor to punish them for it, but only through legal and non-violent ways. They are breaking the law constantly but are not being punished for it but their crimes and misdemeanors will catch up with them eventually and the truth will prevail.

Godi Media – for the BJP, of the BJP and by the BJP

Godi Media (Godi is a Hindi word which means Lap in English) was a term coined by Ravish Kumar, journalist and Senior Executive Editor at NDTV, to describe how a large chunk of our TV news channels and print media have become the lapdog of the present BJP led government in India, ever since it came to power in 2014.

No doubt that their reporting is dangerous, communal, filled with abject lies and is wrong in every way but it helps the BJP win elections one after the other, and in return for their services they get all the moolah they need to run their organization. So most of their reporting is favorable and lenient towards our Prime Minister and his colleagues.

But their method of reporting is killing democracy

The refusal of our media to stand for its citizens makes them feel both incredibly frustrated that their voice is not being heard and vulnerable because they have stopped highlighting our causes and being our voice against this system and instead have been in this cozy relationship with those in power. A relationship where they have become an extension of the Ministry of Propaganda (Goebbels anyone?) in exchange for the highly coveted advertising revenue and access to the latest news breaks.

The only casualty of this relationship is the public, especially those who dare to raise their voice against the government. If anyone has come across words like ‘Tukde tukde gang’ (A gang that is supposedly hell-bent on breaking our nation into innumerable parts, which is not true), ‘Anti-National’, ‘Khan market gang’, ‘Libtards’, ‘Khangressi’ etc. they will know what I am talking about.

Godi Media – spreading fake news since 2014

The aim of our media is very simple – to discredit and malign anyone who speaks against the government. They will not change this tactic because it gets them everything that they want – money and power – along with the ability to run a behemoth of a news organization with minimal or no reporting, because you can stay all day in your Air-conditioned newsrooms and lie your way to prosperity.

But even when they are fabricating the news, they have to it with a touch of finesse and subtlety (not always though because many media organizations are anything but subtle) that makes them appear impartial. So all their reporters are told specifically to go to any protest against that is taking place against the government but only to find out ways to stigmatize the protesters instead of highlighting the issues they are fighting about.

Even if a reporter wants to cover the protest impartially and report it back to their superiors, these editors are skilled enough to manipulate that piece of news and present it in a way that benefits a narrative that suits our government.

And there is absolutely no point in bringing the morality argument. That ship has sailed a long time ago. Expecting our journalists to uphold the principles of morality would be like asking a channel like Star Plus or Zee TV to stop or even cut down on their saasbahu dramas which is the main source of income.

There are only two ways to deal with these people. One is to fight the legal battle against them, which is difficult but possible. And the other way is to……

Boycott Godi Media

We need not heckle them or ask them to ‘Go back’ to where they came from because that would be unbecoming of us. We do not have to do anything that will be construed as violence, be it physical or mental. We just need to stop engaging with them till they change their ways, which may not happen anytime soon.

We need to realize that although their only brief is to engage in misreporting, they have every right to be present at those protests. India is a free country and no one can stop them from covering the news. Freedom does not give them the license to lie and they should face the legal consequences of engaging in the most heinous form of misreporting. But that will take its own sweet time because of two reasons.

First, the regulatory body for news media (be it print or electronic) is not as robust as it should have been which allows the news agencies to make their own rules. Second, the politicians (from all parties but especially from the BJP) want the media to stay under their thumb since they know that an independent medium can be disastrous for their government (because then their scans and misdeeds will come out in the open)

So it would be naive to expect that just being rude to them will make them realize their mistakes and that they will admit their guilt to the public and ask for forgiveness. They are not news reporters but actors who run on a fixed script and are only playing out their part.

I pledge to boycott Godi Media in whatever small way that I can. Will you?

Image Source : Google Images

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