Here’s a Guide to WhatsApp Journalism For Republic TV & Times Now
You don’t want to use a photoshopped image as the basis for a prime time story like Times Now recently did.
It’s been a slow day in office as an editor of a TV news channel. The usual boring stories are pouring in. A thousand farmers from across the country are congregating at Jantar Mantar, Delhi, to agitate against the farm crisis; a Dalit activist was murdered allegedly for breaking a plastic tap; 34 bonded labourers including 11 women and seven children were rescued from a sugarcane field.
The same old, mundane stories of suffering and death.
Suddenly, your mobile phone vibrates in your pocket and you hear the all too familiar notification sound of WhatsApp. You whip out your phone and excitedly tap on the favourite green icon on your home screen.
There’s a picture. You feel goosebumps pop up all over your body. Your ears are on fire. THIS IS GOING TO BE THE PRIME TIME STORY TODAY.
While this strategy of ignoring repetitious stories of pain and suffering and concentrating on a singular picture for prime time shows is great for TV viewership, it has its own pitfalls.
You don’t want to end up using a photoshopped picture which is over seven years old as the basis for your prime time story, like Times Now recently did.
In order to aid our favourite TV news channels, namely Times Now and Republic, so that they don’t make such rookie mistakes, Alt News has come up with an exclusive video tutorial, completely free of cost.
In the above video, we demonstrated how easy it is to look up an image that according to Republic TV was “UNDATED” and according to Times Now was “UNVERIFIED” and find its actual origins.
The image tweeted by the two channels was neither unverified nor undated and has been available since 21 April 2017 on the Chinese Embassy website in which Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and Robert Vadra were attending a Chinese food festival.
The same food festival was attended by India’s Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, Sitaram Yechuri from CPI(M), KC Tyagi from JDU and other leaders from BJP such as Tarun Vijay and Udit Raj.
Instead of using old pictures as breaking news, Times Now and Republic TV will do well to remind the Union Government of the promises it made before it came to power.
If Robert Vadra is responsible for shady business deals, why aren’t questions being asked of the Union government and the state governments of Haryana and Rajasthan?
Where is the booklet that Ravi Shankar Prasad put out in a press conference? What happened to Uma Bharti’s promise?
Who will hold the government accountable if national television channels spend their time discussing pictures from a food festival and portraying it as a hush-hush meet?
(This article was originally published on AltNews. It has been republished with permission.)
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