Twitter journalism in India

Turn on your TV, open a broadsheet newspaper, tune in to a radio station, and you’ll inevitably find journalists passing stories off as originals when in fact they’re not. Much of India’s journalism, in my view, doesn’t stack up. it just isn’t good enough. Maybe its because of the massive explosion in the Indian media sector – where every journalist and organisation has to work even harder for stories that they in fact start passing off trivial stuff as being news-worthy.

All you have to look at is the huge dependence of Indian journos on Twitter. Over the past week since I’ve been on vacation in India, all the newspapers have written stories for their main sections based on 140 characters tweeted by x or y Indian celeb! I’m not saying that India is the only place it happens, as I also read stories in the UK that are sourced from Twitter, but I see a much larger number of these tweets written up as bigger articles in India.

Editors ought to realize that they risk strangling the goose that laid the golden egg if they don’t improve the standards of journalism. Twitter, and social media tools are valuable sources of information, but ultimately a call needs to be made as to whether a story on x celeb stating they’re no longer entertaining their followers on Twitter, or they’re endorsing a new skin whitening cream really needs to take up 300 words in the main section of a “quality” newspaper.

I’m a big fan of the Indian media sector. They’ve entertained, explained, exposed, and generally done a fab job over the years, but my recently concluded visit has stirred me enough to write this blog-post.

There’s nothing wrong with gossip and tittle-tattle, I enjoy it as much as the next person, but they do a great disservice by passing of such trivia as genuine news.