Archive for February, 2012

Editor declares assets, liabilities on live TV

27 February 2012

Even as a question mark hangs over the heads of many editors and journalists, H.R. Ranganath, the chairman and managing director of the newly launched Kannada news channel, Public TV, has declared his assets and liabilities on live television, with his tax consultant sitting alongside him and reading out the list.

Ranganath—former editor of the New Indian Express owned daily Kannada Prabha and the Rajeev Chandrasekhar owned news channel Suvarna News—says he provided the list of his assets and liabilities to his proprietors at his previous ports of call each year, but was only now putting it in the public domain.

Any piece of property over and above those listed by him can be auctioned and the proceeds used for public use, declares Ranganath.

The editor’s assets, as read out by his tax consultant of 15 years, Vijay Rajesh:

# A gift from his mother of four guntas of land in Arkalgud, Hassan

# 1991-92: Partnership in a plot of 13,980 square feet in Mysore

# 2002-03: A house constructed on a 30×40 site in Bangalore

# 2005: A Hyundai Accent car bought on loan

# 2009: A Honda Activa scooter

# 2011: A second-hand 1975 jeep bought last year

# 11,000 shares in Mindtree, 12 shares in Reliance Industries, 15 shares in Kairon

# 250 grams of gold belonging to his wife, 100 grams gifted at the time of marriage, the rest bought over the last 20 years.

Also read: Income, outgo, assets, liabilities, profit, loss

Aditya Nigam‘Editors and senior journalists must declare assets’

***

Is there room for another Kannada news channel?

This is your chief minister and here is the news

N. Ram, Arnab Goswami crash out of power list

24 February 2012

Despite stitching up one of the biggest media deals in recent times, TV18’s Raghav Bahl is among four  media persons who have crashed out of the Indian Express list of the 100 most powerful people in the year of the lord 2012.

N. Ram, the former editor-in-chief of The Hindu (No. 73 in last year’s list) finds himself in the doghouse having remitted office recently, as does Times Now editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami (No. 90), who had edged out NDTV’s Barkha Dutt in the  2011 ranking. Also out is Sun TV boss Kalanidhi Maran (No. 38).

One media figure makes a lateral entry: the new press council chairman, Justice Markandey Katju.

The number of media people in the Express list of India’s most powerful continues to drop. There are seven media people in the 2012 power list, as opposed to 11 in 200912 in 2010, and 10 in 2011.

As in the past, the list contains a bit of trivia.

#No. 67, Samir Jain and Vineet Jain, The Times of India group: “The elder brother is an ardent follower of a Bombay-based guruji, whom he calls ‘bhagwaan’.”

# No. 69, Sanjay Gupta and Mahendra Mohan Gupta, Dainik Jagran: “Sanjay loves watching Hollywood films while M.M. Gupta likes Hindi film songs of the sixties.”

# No. 71, Shobhana Bhartia, Hindustan Times: “She is a fitness freak.”

# No. 72, Uday Shankar, Star India: “He enjoys cooking Indian food. He loves experimenting so much that he never repeats a dish.”

# No. 73, Arun Shourie: “The prolific writer’s next book is an ‘expanded’ edition of Falling over backwards, which he had written in 2006, arguing against the reservation policy and judicial populism.”

# No. 80, Aveek Sarkar, Ananda Bazaar Patrika group: “He is passionate about art and has a large collection of works from the Bengal school of art and the Raj era.”

# No. 83, Justice Markandey Katju, press council chairman: “It’s not just Urdu poet Ghalib whom Katju likes, he is equally fond of Sanskrit poet Kalidas.”

As in previous years, Indian Express does not reveal how the list was arrived at or who the jury members were, although it asks readers to write to the jury (ie100@expressindia.com) “if you disagree with our jury”.

The tabloid supplement carrying the 2012 list has been “presented” by Central Park, a developer, and Campus shoes.  The lead sponsor like last year is IRB infrastructure developers.

Among the advertisers is Nobel Hygiene which makes adult diapers.

***

2011 list: Arnab Goswami edges out Barkha Dutt

2010 list: Arun Shourie more powerful than media pros

2009 list: 11 habits of highly successful media people

Sadly, pictorial evidence is not available

22 February 2012

Image: courtesy Hindustan Times

Three reasons Arnab Goswami should be PM

20 February 2012

Columnist G. Sampath on Times Now‘s editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami in DNA:

# “Arnab Goswami is the only person in the country to whom every Indian is answerable.

# “Our politicians, at any rate, hold him in higher regard than Parliament. No matter how provocative the questions posed to them, they won’t dream of staging a walk-out from Arnab’s chambers like they do every 13 minutes in the Lok Sabha.”

# “Arnab has mastered the art of being outraged. He is the only person I know who can be more outraged than outrage itself. And that is a talent that our current crop of politicians sorely lack. Nothing fazes them.”

The only contender on the horizon is Rajnikanth.

“While Rajini might vaporise Arnab with his laughter, Arnab might pre-empt it by unleashing on Rajini his finger-wagging verbiage of infinite outrage. In which case, Rajini, whose compassionate heart melts at even the tiniest, teeny weenie injustice, would collapse instantly into a heap of sand, and Arnab would emerge the winner. But it would be a close call.”

Read the full article: Why not make Arnab PM

Illustration: courtesy DNA

Jug Suraiya on The Hindu-TOI war of ads

17 February 2012

Jug Suraiya captures the ad war between The Hindu and The Times of India, through the mouths of two newspaper readers, M/s Gup and Shup:

Shup: Boring! The Hindu boring? Listen, buddy, let me wisen you up…. What The Hindu has is gravitas. In fact, it’s got gravitas with a capital G.

Gup: Gravitas? Isn’t gravitas that thing that the guy discovered when he was sitting under a tree and the apple fell on his head?

Shup: No, that was Newton and what he discovered was the Law of Gravity. It was The Hindu which discovered the Law of Gravitas, which involves making everything you say seem weighty and profound, through the use of Capital Letters for everything, including knock-knock jokes. Which in The Hindu are called Knock-Knock Jokes. That’s Gravitas, and that’s what The Hindu has. Unlike the TOI which makes everything it says seem light and frothy. Like that TV ad The Hindu did which showed young people being interviewed on the street, and who couldn’t correctly answer questions on current affairs but knew everything there was to know about Bollywood trivia. The ad hinted that all these clueless people were TTOIRs, or Target TOI Readers.”

Read the full article: Press charges

Also read: Good morning, it’s time to go back to bed

How Hindu aimed at Times but shot DNA

Times readers affluent, not middle class. Mind it.

ToI drags Hindu editor, CEO into ad war

Four journalists want to be info commissioners

16 February 2012

Ritu Sarin reports in today’s Indian Express that at least four journalists—Satya Prakash, Law Kumar Mishra, Prakash N Bhargava and Sudhanshu Ranjan—are among the 214 people who have applied for the posts of information commissioners at the central information commission (CIC).

Read the full story: All want jobs in CIC

Entries invited for Ramnath Goenka Awards, 2010

14 February 2012

The Ramnath Goenka memorial foundation is inviting entries for the 2010 Ramnath Goenka excellence in journalism awards. Email rngf [at] expressindia [dot] com for further details. The last date for entries is 16 April 2012.

EPW on the RIL-ETV-TV18 deal-within-a-deal

13 February 2012

In the latest issue of the Economic & Political Weekly, Paranjoy Guha Thakurta and Subi Chaturvedi weigh in on the nearly forgotten RIL-ETV-TV18 deal, which gives India’s biggest business house control over India’s biggest business news channel, a clutch of news channels, online properties and magazines:

“If international best practices are to be followed, cross-media restrictions should be put in place to prevent large groups from owning stakes across several media, such as print, newspapers, television, radio and the internet. In the US, restrictions place a limit on the market-share available to one entity and that prevents newspaper/broadcast cross-ownership in the same market.

“In France and Canada, a “two out of three” law prevails, whereby companies can only own two of three of the following: terrestrial television services, radio services and daily newspapers. In the UK, the ownership of both newspapers and radio stations, and of both television channels and newspapers in the same area, is prohibited….

“The uniqueness of India’s “mediascape” suggests that while restrictions may be desirable, the safeguards deemed appropriate may not precisely be those that apply in other countries. The TRAI has suggested that a detailed market analysis be conducted by the I&B Ministry in order to ascertain which safeguards would be most appropriate in the Indian context.

“Restrictions on cross-media ownership and control will certainly be resisted staunchly by the big conglomerates in India which own properties across media types and segments. These groups would be vociferous in their criticism of any step to move towards regulation of corporate “groups” or “conglomerates” as opposed to specific “entities” – they would resist such moves tooth and nail.

“Any attempt to impose cross-media restrictions on ownership and control would be dubbed as ‘heavy-handed government censorship’, ‘a return to the bad days of the Emergency’, and a ‘reversion to the infamous licence control raj. The government will invarialy be accused of trying to constrain the media because the media is critical of those in positions of power and authority.

“The argument that since cross-media restrictions exist in advanced capitalist countries with developed media markets, such restrictions should also exist in India, will be countered by claims that since India is a developing country, any restrictions on ownership and control would stifle the media’s growth potential.”

Read the full article: Corporatisation of the media

Also read: Mint says SEBI looking into RIL-Network18/TV18-ETV deal

Rajya Sabha TV tears into RIL-Network18-ETV deal

Will RIL-TV18-ETV deal win SEBI, CCI approval?

The sudden rise of Mukesh Ambani, media mogul

The Indian Express, Reliance & Shekhar Gupta

Niira Radia, Mukesh Ambani, Prannoy Roy & NDTV

ET joins Mint, has questions on RIL-ETV-TV18 deal

This is the chief minister, and here’s the news

12 February 2012

Karnataka chief minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda inaugurates the Kannada news channel, Public TV, in Bangalore on Sunday by reading a news item from a laptop computer. The channel is headed by H.R. Ranganath, the son of a southern railway employee in Mysore, who rose to be editor of Kannada Prabha and Suvarna News.

PhotographKarnataka Photo News

Also readIs there space for another Kannada news channel?

TOI bossman Samir Jain wants a Man Friday

10 February 2012

Samir Jain, the scarily reclusive bossman of The Times of India group—neither seen nor heard by lesser mortals in the newsroom—makes a rare appearance on the pages of the paper, through an advertisement for an executive secretary, with a copy of his visiting card.

Also read: When Samir Jain served a thali

Jug Suraiya on Samir Jain among others

Why is Rupert Murdoch taking on Samir Jain?

What Raghav Bahl could learn from Samir Jain

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 7,527 other followers

%d bloggers like this: