August 01, 2008

life in journalism: fragile egos of editors in indian media

Many editors (editor-in-chiefs, executive editors, deputy editors) have fragile egos that is causing great harm to journalism in India. Readers of newspapers, magazines and viewers of television news channels don't get to know of it. In fact, even publishers of many publications and TV news companies do not bother -- they are only interested in profits (or less losses) no matter what else happens within the organisation.

So the above-described editors get away with treating the journalists and junior editors unfairly and at times with contempt. I have said this in some of my earlier posts here but I will say it again -- there is no accountability, in Indian journalism, of the Editor-in-chiefs, Executive Editors and Deputy Editors as far as their handling of their editorial staff is concerned. I don't know about other countries but as an Indian journalist I know that the Indian media will never truly serve the readers and viewers unless these editors are made accountable to their editorial staff.

To elaborate, I say they have no accountability simply because there is no one above them to audit their behaviour. Many publishers, as I said above, would care less if the journalists are treated unfairly as long as the advertisements keep coming. Sucking up to companies and politicians efficiently seems to be the only qualification many publishers want from their top editors.

There are exceptions to the above but they are very far and few and even they are not consistent.

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