March 04, 2010

life in journalism: the regressive practice of giving awards

In the last decade, the number of award cermonies being held by business media organisations, whether business magazines or business news channels, to hand out all kinds of awards to companies and individuals has risen so much that it has now touched the dangerous mark.

Whether it is the Best Companies Awards, the Best CEO Awards, the Best Banks Awards or the Best Mutual Funds Awards, these awards have nothing journalistic about them. Yet, publishers and editor-in-chiefs, force the journalists working for them to work on these awards the methodology of which is not even decided by the journalists but outsourced to external agencies.

I think journalists should focus only on breaking news stories or analytical feature stories. In these stories, good work done by a company or an individual can receive mention. But to say that company 'XYZ Ltd' or individual 'ABC' is the best in the industry is distortion.

But the day is also near when a vast majority of readers and viewers will recognise the nonsense of awards and give it a complete miss when it comes to taking their important business/financial decisions. Perhaps, it is already happening to a significant extent, but media editors and publishers are choosing to turn a blind eye to it.

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