Das ka Dum with Dr Bhaskar Das: Is it right for a news media company – respected or otherwise – to pass off paid content as editorial-generated and editor-okayed?

04 Oct,2019

Bhaskar Das

Greetings on this Friday before Dassera. We’re here with a question that a lot of us have been seeking an answer to. So read on for Dr Bhaskar Das’s views on paid content… in Das ka Dum.

Please go to the Das Ka Dum tab on the website’s top navigation bar, to visit the archives of Q&As.

 

Q. Is it right for a news media company – respected or otherwise – to pass off paid content as editorial-generated and editor-okayed?

 

A. The slant of the question has a definitive drift towards an answer of  ‘right’ or ‘wrong’. These days, more often than not, answers may not be in black or white but somewhere in between. What the media industry eulogises as native content can also be clubbed under your question. Or for that matter how some public relations companies facilitate content in the media.

 

I think a more fundamental question needs to be asked if the veracity of a story is compromised. Or if the concerned story has been flagged as sponsored content. Infomercials are a legit route to consumer awareness. The problem starts when the paid  content is camouflaged as non- sponsored content. One can’t take the audience’s intelligence for granted. They can see through it in case paid content is masqueraded as news.

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