Hava Nagila!

Everything does pass, and we can endure and we can survive!! – Rahul Dravid

The Hindu vs The TOI

Not so long ago, The Hindu was an integral part of the Chennaiite. The English newspaper reading population would read nothing else. Filter coffee in a tumbler, The Hindu and an easy chair – that is how we lived. We prided ourselves saying that we read a standard paper; reading a Hindu editorial in those days required good English knowledge. The news was always confirmed and views were mostly unbiased.

First, they started becoming biased. Still, we continued to remain loyal to the paper because TN news was only part of it. After that, they started becoming so pro DMK and pro Congress that even the staunchest Congress persons like my grandparents would cringe. Even then, we persisted with the paper for the high standard of English that they maintained. Then, the English started faltering. It became so bad that I could start spotting at least 5 spelling mistakes per page. Yet, we persisted with The Hindu. Gossip which was usually restricted to the supplement section entered the main paper and this was the last straw.

We shifted to The Times of India. The TOI provided the same gossip, same dappa English and the same biased news and views. At least, it provided the gossips early and charged only one third the price.  The Hindu neither gave quality nor quantity.

Their circulation had lessened. Instead of improving their standards, they offered the paper free for a couple of days every now and then. Like that would entice us! Then a guy from The Hindu came to take a survey. We told him that their news is too biased; full of mistakes and that the price is exorbitant. He point blank refused to write it down and scribbled something of his choice!!

They had recently got into a spot of bother by publishing an article from Nakkeeran, a Tamil weekly. The article spoke about the personal life of the current CM of Tamilnadu, Dr.J.Jayalalitha. It mentioned that she ate and cooked beef among other things. Even anti AIADMK and anti Jayalalitha papers, magazines and TV (including Kalaignar TV, Sun News and Dina Karan) have not published it or even quoted from Nakkeeran.

The Hindu published the article in question with excerpts. Honestly, where was the need? A CM should be evaluated on the performance that she delivers from her chair. The media is at full right to criticize the activities that she does using her post. What she eats now, what she cooked for MGR or ate long back and who she slept with at night when she was an actress is none of The Hindu’s business.  

From Nakkeeran, such an article was a regular. We don’t consider Nakeeran as an epitome of poise. From The Hindu, however, it was unexpected.  If this is the best that The Hindu can do, they are losing their touch! They have proved worthy sambandhis to MK. As if this were not enough, they have now launched a revenge ad on The TOI.

The abominably insane ad shows many GK questions being put to common people and silly responses. But when asked what Hrithik Roshan’s nickname was, everyone responded with the right answer. When asked what newspaper they read, everyone answers. The answers were muted of course but perfectly lip synced so everyone can see – The Times of India. Really, The Hindu couldn’t sink any lower.

With this, they have also buried their long built up self-respect. Where is the necessity to stoop so low? Did they honestly think that this would help improve circulation? India’s National newspaper should have behaved with more dignity! It is simply appalling to see The Hindu behave like this. And N.Ram and N.Murali come to all kuthceris and say that they encourage culture and tradition through music. First, do it through your ads and paper!!

Olgivy could have done much better! Is this the way they project brands?! My, my, they too are losing their foot!! My own friend was involved in it.

Guys, the media is not a product. It is a matter of national pride. It is not Horlicks, Complan, Rin or Tide. The media is every country’s spokesperson. They are the fourth estate – as powerful as our armed forces. Why should they cover themselves with ignominy in this fashion? They disgrace the entire nation with such ads.

News, these days reaches us instantly through 24/7 TV and internet. There is, basically, no need for newspapers. Only because the elder crowd at home is used to seeing a paper in the morning and can’t seem to get through their morning activities without it, we buy newspapers. Only reporting the right news, giving unbiased opinions and guts will help restore papers to their lost glory. Please create ads that will help foster such qualities.


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This entry was posted on January 30, 2012 by in Current Affairs and tagged , , , , , .

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