Thursday, 10 April 2014

Elections bring News Media in forefront

The Month of April will see the biggest democratic process go on as India goes for its Parliamentary elections. Every news channel is busy telecasting rallies of various political leaders, heated panel discussion on the possible outcome of elections and opinion polls. It is difficult to find a single channel that is unbiased. Every channel appears to have its own agenda according to its alliances with some political or industrial group.
Kejriwal led AAP party is in maximum news, not for anything else but its wrongdoings and remarks on the credibility of news channels, as Mr Kejiriwal  had publicly announced that most of the channels carry paid news or are biased . News channels are all out to also de-rate their rival channels carrying out sting operations against anchors who believe to be helping the Aam Aadmi Party. Many media persons have joined the party in the last few months. 

Election Commission is very strictly monitoring the content on various news channels and have also issued advisory to all media against any violation of the code of conduct. 
Cable Operators associations, NCTA and COFI have also approached the leaders of three large parties likely to form the next government, to review the ongoing process of mandatory digitization which has caused great damage to the last mile cable operators putting in danger their livelihood and fundamental rights giving all the advantage to large MSOs. They have alleged that the Ministry Officials as well as the I&B Ministers in the past have approved such regulations that would help large media groups like Star and Zee increase their monopolies with their vertically integrated entities. 
They have demanded for a CAS like implementation of the analog and digital channels simultaneously till the whole country gets digitized. 
Last month, CCBN, Asia's largest cable TV and Broadcast show was held in Beijing, China. Technologies that dominated the show were 4K broadcasting and triple play on cable using to EOC and GPON Representatives from many Indian companies were seen negotiating deals with equipment vendors including STB vendors for digital STB and other equipment required for the Phase III & IV market.  
Also, CASBAA annual event was held last month in New Delhi, where Ministry officials painted a very rosy picture of digitisation that was negated by comments from many stakeholders. Even in FICCI Frames held last month in Mumbai, Senior executives of broadcast companies criticized the way digitization was being implemented by the Ministry and the regulators stating that nothing was achieved except , forced installation of millions of STBs in consumer Homes. 
We are thankful to all our readers and Industry professionals for the overwhelming response to our industry year book and directory 2014. We also thank all our contributors for providing wonderful technical knowledge that is not otherwise available easily India. 

—— Lt. Col. (Retd.) K K Sharma


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