1 Minute View: Why Times erred in sending the blogger the notice

24 May,2013

It pains us much to see the way big media organizations react to critics or those who dare to question their doings. While no one likes to be criticized or made fun of, news organizations -  especially those in print media are most unsporting.


Times have changed and so has the media landscape. The internet has democratized media, and you don’t need deep pockets to own a media entity. It isn’t the case here in India, but in the US, nobodies such as Drudge Report and Huffington Post have become must-reads.


So Bennett Coleman and Company Limited’s Times Publishing House (TPH) was irked by an analysis young Aparajita Lath curated for a site for intellectual property practitioners and students called Spicy IP. While the article Ms Lath wrote was analytical, it borrowed heavily from various published stories in Mint (the business daily) and Spicy IP.


Therein was the problem: a reporter (or his/her website/publication) is liable even if inferences are borrowed and paraphrased from a published work.


However, for TPH to react by way of a legal notice was uncalled for. A simple counter via a comment or engaging the writer and the website and impressing upon them the TPH point of view would have worked. While all hell hasn’t broken loose as yet, expect a fair bit of it against the group in the coming days.


Sad. Save the regressive paid content division, one has come to expect some good journalism and smart publishing practices from BCCL in the last 15-odd years.


There’s only one expression we have in response: wtf!


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