Propaganda Hungry Media is a Pawn in the Hands of the High and Mighty

Media; an honest friend, a loyal advisor, and most importantly a genuine source to enlighten us. Yes, from its inception, Indian media has been faithful to its viewers and has been serving us with all the indispensable information. Media is a system to communicate, inform and amuse the audience and, in this era where everything has a motive behind it, ‘systematic propaganda’ tarnished every information we receive. In a country like ours where there are different levels of government, the media lies in the hands of the state but expresses itself as the medium of free speech. The media then covers the stories of the elite only and, hence, I am sorry to say, that in this era of globalization and development, it has become ‘just propaganda hungry in the hands of high and mighty.’

The king ruled over everything in 18th century France and then the French Revolution happened, which made everyone look at things from a completely different perspective. After this revolution, the king’s censorship over the media was removed and it finally became an independent entity. That is when free speech was born. Independent media has existed for over 200 years but is it really free?

Out of all the top media houses, most are owned by profit-seeking organizations or wealthy people which again makes the media propagandistic. The media has always been under immense pressure from the elite but this has increased tenfold in recent years. The media has focused more on the petty issues rather than what should actually be talked about and for what? Profitability? Or Power?

Propaganda is not a new concept. It has been in existence since time immemorial. During Adolf Hitler’s regime, the so-called savior of the Germans, the man with an agenda and a powerful hold over the media, radio and film enjoyed special support from the state. Immediately after Hitler’s nomination, the entire German media and culture industry was systematically streamlined under the leadership of propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. The media was transformed into a mouthpiece of propagandistic trend-setting adhering exclusively to state instructions.

2014 and 2019, general elections, political campaigns, media and publicity; many platforms, but one voice, Acche Din! A few years have passed since then but our government has not scored 10/10 in any area. Demonetization, Swach Bharat Abhiyaan, Namami Gange, COVID 19, Ram Mandir and whatnot, the list is long. These are some of the schemes and issues highlighted by the Modi government from 2014 till now, but even after all these years, the media is highlighting only the achievements. There is no glimpse of failure anywhere; the government and media tarred with the same brush!

Modi government is highlighting the fact that it’s good that COVID-19 came under his rule because he constructed many toilets, making it easier for people to stay under a complete lockdown but he didn’t talk about the continuous high increases in cases and so it is a crime! We have had the biggest daily increases in infections many times but there is no address of that. The only emphasis was on the fact that his government made toilets!

As for the case of Sushant Singh Rajput on the other hand, the media has been spreading this news like wildfire. Every tad bit of information found in this case has been framed as such a major issue and turned into headlines but what is the conclusion? Do we know why he did what he did? The media is exploiting his and his family’s privacy to increase viewership and rake in more money from the race called ‘ratings’.

Here is what retired Lieutenant General Ghulam Mustafa had to say about his experience with news-based talk-shows:

“Talk shows have degenerated into a meaningless exchange where participants defend their particular standpoint and are mostly engaged in point-scoring. Quite a few hosts/anchors either become a party or indulge in monologues to give their specific views. An intelligent debate aimed at educating the public about various issues is a rarity.”

The Ram Mandir case; it is very good that the construction has been initiated but the media has been highlighting it in such a manner so as to provoke the other religion! They are playing with the sentiments of both the communities!

Elections are over for 2019. We have the same government but with a lot more problems now and we are still waiting for acche din to come! When will they come or will they ever, is the question that needs to be answered?  

Jal Biradari, Gauraiya Bachao, Jeevan Jyoti, and Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao, these are some more schemes initiated by the current government for the welfare of the country and its citizens. Do you even know about these schemes? You might have heard their names but what else? What are these? What and who are they made for? Well, how would you even know about them, when they are not the showstoppers of the “breaking news syndrome”. Rather, they work hard to make this country a better place, still no recognition for them? The media nowadays heeds more importance on what is going on in the lives of celebrities; who are they getting married to, who is getting divorced from whom, the list goes on. On the other hand, the important news about what is going on in the rest of the world gets only a little coverage and stays in the news for a day or two, a week at the most, whereas the celebrity news is always a hot topic that stays in the limelight.

We are taught from the beginning of our school lives how soldiers protect the country so that we can live peacefully but the media never highlights their bravery other than when they become martyrs but it becomes a big controversy if Mr. Bachchan sneezes once and people start analyzing if he tested positive for COVID-19 or not Why is this? Why does the media not heed attention to the topics that are actually important? Why do they publish stories that are sometimes not even relevant but will definitely increase someone’s power somewhere? This is because the great media is now supported by the government more than ever which in turn influences what the media shows and what it does not.  

Hence, these powerful sources take advantage and ‘manage’ the media. Not only this, but they also manipulate the media into covering and showcasing their own agenda. This leads to the media talking about unwanted stories rather than covering the important agendas and this strategy can be traced back to World War 1 when the Committee on Public Information "discovered in I9I7-I8 that one of the best means of controlling news was flooding news channels with ‘facts,’ or what amounted to official information."

You may never have seen the newspaper or TV advertisements, about any of our Nobel prize winners, because they are in the news for that one day, the result is announced and then; forgotten. Do you remember William Nordhaus or Tasuko Honjo, irrespective of the fact that both are Nobel prize winners? Have you heard of them? I don’t think so. You won’t have because the use of “media as a propagandistic tool has resulted in the commodification of journalism”.

They have the charm, skill, and money to manifest everything, still, they are not in the news. Why? Because the paparazzi are more interested in tinsel town and what’s going on over there. Otherwise, what will the media earn? Who will watch them on TV? Who will invest their time and money on them? Will you? Will I? I don’t think so!

Media makes, Media breaks,

Media earns, Media fakes.

Media is indeed a pawn of the rich,

Wealthiest, mightiest in its top list

Its triumph for them,

And fills its coffers.

Who are we the common one, and what do we have to offer?

Nothing, so it’s better to keep our mouths zipped.

Media and mighty two sides of the same coin,

Strong and robust in today’s time, in today’s time.


Tags: fake news media

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Comment by Shivani gupta | Aug. 24, 2020, 1:51 p.m.

Wow. An amazing insight into the fake propaganda by the media. Definitely an article to ponder on 😊

Comment by Radhika Randad | Aug. 29, 2020, 1:18 a.m.

Loved the citing of various examples and the non-biased view on current news headlines. Amazing !

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