Indian media houses which were splurging cash as if there were no tomorrow a few months ago are suddenly running around as if ants are in their pants which is on fire.
Suddenly all plans are off or on hold.
The current mantra is downsizing, right sizing, cost-cutting, rationalising, streamlining, even scrapping. Suddenly, “visionary” managers are looking no better than medical reps, Amway agents, or used-car salesmen.
Rahul Kansal, the chief marketing officer of Bennett, Coleman & Co, publishers of The Times of India, has offered this tell-tale rationale for an upward revision of cover prices in select “markets” where ToI is published, in an interview with agencyfaqs:
“This is not being done to raise money, but to prevent people from buying it for the sake of ‘raddi’ (waste paper)…. ‘Raddi’ prices have gone up by 30-40 per cent in the recent past and we want to insulate the newspaper from the ‘raddi’ business.”