‘News is the subtlest form of advertising’

M.J. Akbar in Deccan Herald:

“News is the subtlest form of advertising. Perhaps we should be generous to journalism and qualify that: news can become the most subtle form of advertising, particularly when it comes dressed in quotation marks….

“We customers of democracy buy words without enquiry about their value. This encourages those in power to embroider words with whatever we will be fooled by: sometimes pepper to enhance the taste, sometimes frippery to brighten the look, sometimes nothing more substantial than packaging.

“When you reach home, tear up the glittering paper, and open the box you find lots of straw under which is hidden a shrivelled raw mango instead of the array of Alfonsos you were promised in the marketplace of politics. Since there is no one else to blame for the transaction, you make pickle out of that mango and console yourself with the illusion that it is sustenance.”

Read the full columnWagon of words

Also read: Will M.J. Akbar recreate The Telegraph magic?

‘In fractured media, the word is the common fact’

M.J. Akbar charges Manmohan Singh of sabotage

‘Never let your head stoop as a journalist’

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