Dear MxM by Jaisurya Das: Is politics the only thing that makes for news on TV?

10 Aug,2017

By Jaisurya Das

 

I just read about the new Bill that they are seeking to pass in Maharashtra that will allow establishments with 10 or less employees to start without registration. This is a major amendment to the archaic Maharashtra Shops and Establishment Act and certainly the need of the hour.Ladies and Gentleman, welcome back to an all-new edition of Dear MxM.

 

In case you are wondering what this act or this amendment has to do with our fraternity, let me remind you that some of the best startups be it in advertising or alternate media are small and employ less than 10 people. This will greatly ease the pressure on young/small entrepreneurs and free them from the inspection raj that they are faced with.

More often than once, the shop act inspectors demand bribes for small deviations that they may notice. Often it is as innocuous as not displaying the list of holidays on the wall of your office, despite every employee being sent this well in advance. And the only way you can prevent a ridiculous fine is to just give them what they demand and get them out of the place.

I sincerely hope this Bill goes through and allows for small businesses to operate fear-free and focus on their objectives, rather than waste good man hours entertaining corrupt inspectors.

Often it is these impediments that slow down progress for startups and cutting the red tape isn’t always possible.

Allow young companies to grow. Do not stifle them with regulation and process. This isn’t how progress is made.

I wish they do the same with a host of other prehistoric laws that we have to deal with in our country.

 

But for now, it is time to take a look at our very interesting bouquet of questions from our readers.

 

Sir, do you think some of our television news channels are too obsessed with politics? Is politics the only thing that makes for news?

Oh, absolutely! There is nothing else that is covered any case. It’s politics or Kashmir and more politics. That is how innovative our news channels have got today 🙂

I completely take your point since there are several pain points of our citizens beyond politics and none of these get any mention or if at all, a passing one.

Somewhere, I believe they have lost the plot and believe that viewers can be fed anything 24/7.

However, I do believe that the impact of this will be seen over the next 18months and overall viewership will decline substantially. Digital is already the proffered option for news what with its immense immediacy and accessibility. It is only a matter of time now and we will most certainly see a lateral shift out of television news.

Unless of course the current crop of channels seriously relook their content complement.

 

Why is that the various agencies hiring communications professionals in the country – whether it’s in journalism, advertising or PR – do not hire trained manpower in their respective domains?

Shouldn’t only those qualified in culinary stuff be reviewing food? Or CAs doing financial advertising and journalism?

Thanks for writing in with an interesting observation but the fact of the matter is that writing in itself is a specialised domain!

While cross-domain and niche domain knowledge is important, not all domain specialists can write and vice versa. So you may be a great chef but that doesn’t make you a good content professional. Each of these domains requires skills of a varied nature and it isn’t always possible to marry them.

Having said that, there are several cases of domain specialists becoming outstanding writers, but they remain a minority. I trust I have been able to answer your concern on this !

 

Why should the media sector have any age limits for people working? After all, why is the age of 58 considered limiting, when you can work on till 65 or 70 years with ease?

Honestly I agree with you but this isn’t always practical since some of the segments / departments need high energy levels such as sales. Spending long hours on the field isn’t always easy after a particular age and all of us tend to slow down, no matter what we may think.

It is also important to understand the most neural degeneration happens post 50 and hence decision making and multi tasking may get affected or slowed. These are all reasons that we cannot shy from.

However, there are several hundreds of people who are exceedingly competent and active well above the age of 60. Organisations have to constantly change and bringing in younger resources are important. This cannot happen without existing people retiring at some point of time.  I always believe that smart media organisations must employ some of their great staff who have retired through contracts and utilise their strengths for mutual benefit.

Often companies are losing great talent by virtue of this rule and getting the best of both worlds is the answer. I do hope companies are listening!

 

On that note of hope, it is time I move on with the rest of the week.

 

Have a wonderful weekend ahead and do take good care of yourselves. Stay well-protected this monsoon and enjoy all the garam chai and pakoras life can give you! Till we meet again, then this is Jaisurya Das saying Sayonara and God Bless.

 

Jaisurya Das, maverick and media evangelist eats, sleeps and makes love to brands. His consulting interventions are aimed at making brands powerful and sustainable. He is also the Contributing Editor of MxM India and Co-Founder of pune365.com. For more on his work visit www.xanadu.co.in. The views expressed in this column are his own.

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