Jaisurya Das Talks About “When Media Goes Potty Over News”
This is it. I have seen it all now.
With three decades in the media business, I actually believed that I had a firm grip on what news is all about. Alas, Ladies and Gentleman, am sorry to report that I was grossly off the mark.
News is no longer about what concerns you, or me, or for that matter, the world at large.
News is no longer about what concerns you, or me, or for that matter, the world at large. Trump’s ‘bigger’ nuclear button is passé for our media that is overawed by Bollywood’s star children and their diapers, if you please.
All that I see on my already cluttered timeline on Twitter and Facebook are reports of who changes Taimur’s diapers. And believe me, when you see 376 posts a minute on this significant national phenomenon you are vulnerable enough to actually click on one and therein lies the problem.
For the uninitiated, Taimur is a lovely looking two-year-old, born to the Bollywood couple Saif and Kareena. And as far as I fathom, this poor chap has no clue of his diapers’ immense fan following in our starstruck country.
Imagine growing up to be told that your diapers made national news almost every day; ‘Taimur breaks his silence on his new gem incrusted potty that was flown in from Germany’. Ladies and Gentleman, this is no laughing matter, this is news in our country and contrary to what one may think, it works well for the media brands powering this nonsense.
Indian media has reached a point of being ridiculous and I shudder to think what we would be reading about, as we go along. To me, the biggest challenge for media is the humungous amount of content that is available and not the lack of it.
And yes, let the kid do his job in peace. Do we really need to know what happens each time? So, he is holidaying with his parents like any other child and this isn’t national news for God’s sake. He is a two-year-old and at that age, they are meant to sleep (on his way to London!) or wake up and look around. So, what if he needs a diaper change meanwhile?
Are we honestly this star-starved or has the audience been dumbed down to this extent that news is this flippant? Or am I the ‘one foot in the grave’ minority that still thrives on news and information that is beyond the human excretory system or paediatrics for that matter?
From the perennial cacophony on news media to the proliferation of fake news, sensible news and information has certainly taken a back seat.
India as a country has today been usurped by the never-ending banter of journalists and content writers who struggle to find a topic to unleash their creativity on. Different matter that the creativity is most often centred around some paparazzi report of how a star couple was found holding hands in some country or the other.
And now, star children as though there wasn’t enough of this gibberish already.
Am sure we can do better than this or have I just lost the plot?
Yes, diapers must be changed and regular enough in public interest, but do we really need to tweet a million times on who does this job? Why can’t we allow this family to just enjoy their private moments and take the media glare and the obnoxious flash bulbs off their faces.
At this rate, we will soon be privy to star issues with digestion and what alleviates their constipation.
We have to draw a line somewhere, and it is about time if you ask me. I have no interest in matters such and from what I understand, over a million of my fellow Indian’s have better things to read.
And moreover, those light bulbs may not particularly good for little Taimur who is already finding it a tall order to have his diaper changed in private.
Which reminds me, it is time I get back to reading the latest on the quinoa enriched baby cereal that has taken the star parents by storm.
The industry affectionately calls him a maverick. Known to be brutally candid with his writing as much as everything else, Jaisurya Das, known as JD is a much respected media commentator whose prolific writing sees no boundaries. He writes, edits, and thrives on everything that is life.
The views expressed are the author’s own.