Das ka Dum with Dr Bhaskar Das: On Saturday, every news entity was caught napping on the political twist in Maharashtra. Does this mean that newswallahs do not have their ears to the ground?

25 Nov,2019

Bhaskar Das

For those even with the remotest interest in news, the weekend was hilarious. Well, more because everyone was caught napping… politicians, pundits and journalists tracking the business. So we thought, we will pose a question on the issue to our every own Wizard with Words. Presenting Dr Bhaskar Das in Das ka Dum. Read on…  If you wish to access the archives, please go to the Das Ka Dum tab on the website’s top navigation bar.

 

Q. On Saturday, every news entity in the country was caught napping on the political twist with the BJP forming the government with the NCP leader.   As a senior industry professional who has spent a lifetime with news, what does this say (to you) about the newswallahs… the news community? Do they not have their ears to the ground?

A. One news channel has broken the story though. Let’s not go into the debate of which channel broke the story. It also doesn’t mean that that only one channel has ears to the ground — a typical syndrome called heuristics bias. History is replete with examples of many channels breaking many other stories. The nihilism about a sector on the basis of one stray incident can’t be used to generalise either about a sector, or of the fraternity per se. In fact you are underestimating the dexterity with which the political class have guarded a secret from the ever-prying eyes of the media. That’s pretty smart. Now if the pink ball outsmarts Bangladesh players, can you blame the pink ball? Or that the future of cricket or its players needs to be contemplated. I wonder.

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