Destructive role of media
Media has a significant role to play in the country’s success. Its duty is to show the truth but it should not always portray the negative aspects of the country.
Qualitative, independent media reporting can play an important role in pressuring the government to act in the public interest. It can change opinions because it has access to people and this gives it a lot of strength.
This strength can either be used constructively by educating the people or it can be used destructively by misleading the innocent people; could spoil everything by diverting the attention of people from important issues towards insignificant issues. Power of the media can transform the whole society or it can be used as a ‘weapon of mass destruction. The media in Pakistan is playing negatively. It should have been the mirror of society it is operating in but our media has become the mirror of U.S, India, and the West. Working on American agenda, for few dollars, corrupt anchors and TV channels are propagating the negative image of country in front of outer world.
Our media anchors often divert the attention of the people from the real issues to non issues on behest of the people they are working for. The media is focusing more on sensationalism than truth creating a negative world view and only highlights the individual sort of issues that disrepute the society. In my opinion a large section of the Pakistani media does not serve the interest of the people, in fact some of it is positively anti-people. It often divides the people. The people, who watch these channels in foreign countries, are for sure constrained to think that Pakistan is full of ill-cultured, fraudulent and dishonest people who always involve in crimes etc. The media has totally ignored the important role it should play in this transition period we are passing through. However, I am not saying that there are no good journalists at all in the media. There are many excellent journalists too who work for the country, but they are always under multiple threats.
Some of the channels and media anchors are working for particular political parties. For instance, the real issues in Pakistan are socio-economic, the terrible poverty in which about 80% of our people are living, the massive unemployment, unbearable load-shedding, the abnormal price rise, lack of medical care, education, the ruin of institutions, breakage of fiber of the society, unaffordable higher education, backward social practices like honor killing and caste oppression, religious fundamentalism and so on never highlighted during the last regime. Instead of devoting most of its coverage to these vital issues the media focused on non issues like film stars, fashion parades, individual rape and killing cases, repeated entertainment programs and talk shows etc. Does a hungry or unemployed man wanted entertainment or food and a job?
Media groups are owned by corporations that seek to profit, regardless of the consequences. Major part of media is absolutely non-objective, complete lies, omission of fact; neglect to report on real news and now false propaganda that could bring the incoming regime under their pressure. The pressure to produce constant unimportant news, all day, every day, on single issue tends to result in over representations of that news. For example, when there is even a minor blast, most of the news channels report almost exclusively on this topic for hours and ignore news with more significance to people’s lives. Each news station is supportive more of one side; biased media. The news covers stories that are more interesting for ratings and gives their opinions more siding with those who pay them more.
They often suppress facts while exaggerating and misleading. They are an extension of their political party’s campaign efforts while pretending to be objective journalists. They follow distributed talking points and their views are extreme compared to that of the average Pakistani. They act like they are the elite, and somehow more enlightened, looking down on the average Pakistani with contempt. The media manipulates facts to distort truths and to promote their own political agenda. For some money corrupt media anchors of different channels are destroying our culture and misguiding the youth of country. Malik Riaz ex-chairman of Bahria Town continued bribing many TV anchors to hide his own and his favorite PPP’s corruption from the People of Pakistan. The same segment of media is now creating a negative perception about incoming regime and propagating negatively just as pressure tactics to get fulfilled their “demands” in coming days. Journalism in Pakistan is a failure as well.
Media can play public accountability role by monitoring and investigating the actions of those who are granted public trust and who may be tempted to abuse their office for private gain. The media should work to educate the people, to help the people and to liberate the people and to empower the people. There are times when they should put their personal interests at the back of their mind and show things that could be beneficial for the country and its people and please stop this race of breaking first news just be original. Media is a source of information or communication but now it has been transformed to a source of mere making money. This should stop. Media should act as a bridge between the governing bodies and general public instead of being a tool for one class of politicians and falsely propagating against others to bring them under pressure.
Source: Pakistan Observer