Social Sciences and Humanity Studies Academic Blog

Online Media in Nepal: A profile study

Posted in Global Media, Journalism, Media, Online Media by Shekhar on April 30, 2011

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By: Shekhar KC

Bachelor in Media Studies, Kathmandu University

Historical Context of Online Media:

World History of Online media

· 1990, Tim Berners-Lee created the internet. His invention changed the scenario as the WWW offered greater capacity, flexibility, immediacy, permanence and interactivity.

· Chicago Tribune of USA began its online venture, the Chicago Online, in 1992. This is the considered the first online media.

· On January 19, 1995, the first newspaper to regularly publish on the Web, the Palo Alto Weekly in California, begins twice-weekly postings of its full content.

History of Online media in Nepal:

· Before June 1994 Nepal Academy for Science and Technology (NAST) and Nepal Forum for Environmental Journalists had used email services as trials.

· On July 15, 1995 Mercantile started providing full online access operating via a lease line through Nepal Telecom with its backbone in Singapore

· Himal Media started archiving its publication, Himal South Asia, in its own website himalsouthasia.com in 1997.

· Mercantile established South-Asia.com in 1998 when it archived seven daily and weekly newspapers. 1999, it moved to NepalNews.com paving ways for more newspapers

· http://www.newslookmag.com was established on 4 July 1999 as the first Online journal by Dharma Adhikary which provided link to largest collection of news of nepali events and public affairs. Later in 2005 it was re-established as http://www.nepalmonitor.com. The reason was the ban imposed by Royal Takeover on 2005 on which Fomer King Gyanendra was responsible.

· Kantipur Publications established KantipurOnline.com on April 13, 2000. At initial phase, KantipurOnline.com

· On February 2000 kantipuronline.com was established.

· On 12 September 2001 http://www.nepalipost.com was established.

· On December 15, 2002 Kamana Group of Publications began newsofnepal.com. Lately all broadsheet dailies along with weeklies and smaller media are available online.

· The first ever Blog in Nepal is United We Blog (blog.com.np), was established on October 1, 2004.

· Other popular pioneer websites were samudaya.org (http://www.samudaya.org/) peacejournalism.com (http://www.peacejournalism.com/), NepalinewsUSA.com(http://www.nepalinewsusa.com/) citizen journalism(http://www.cjnepal.org/) Canada Nepal Vision(http://www.canevision.net/) dcnepal.com(http://www.dcnepal.com/) etc

The study corpus of my research are three websites listed as follows:

www.nepalmonitor.com

www.nepalitimes.com

http://www.reuters.com/

Now let me put light on the different aspects of these websites and add some comparative views.

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Websites Foundation:

Nepal Monitor renowned as "Nepal’s first online news magazine “was originally established as http://www.newslookmag.com in 1999 A.D from USA by a student named Dharma Adhikary as a part of his Online Journalism class in the Missouri School of Journalism at Columbia.

Reuters.com is currently owned by Thomson Reuters but before 2008 it was owned by Reuters Group PLC which used to focus its information on Financial Market Data. Originally Reuters was established in October 1851 whose popularity rose later due to its act of publishing scoop news abroad. Today almost every major news outlet in the world now subscribes to Reuters’ services, which operates in over 200 cities in 94 countries in about 20 languages. — In July 1999, TIBCO Software completed an IPO on NASDAQ; Reuters retains a substantial proportion of the shares. Reuters announced, in early 2000, initiatives designed to migrate core business to an internet-based model.

The foundation of online venture of Nepali times dates back to some 10 years ago tentatively in 2001. According to the web master of the nepalitimes.com Rubeena Mahato, the websites contains not only the content of it’s printed version but also it publishes longer and full-fledged form of media content with associated links.

Objective

As stated earlier, Nepal Monitor was established as an individual project to fulfill the credit of online journalism class by a student in Missouri School of Journalism in Colombo. Besides that Dharma Adhikary, the founder of this website shares that the website was founded to make it "one stop center" for all the information regarding public affairs and analytical news-views of Nepal for Nepalese diaspora staying in America. "It was somehow fun-fun task"- whispers Dr Adhikary whose says that those day of starting a website make him feel nostalgic about his student life in USA.

Whatever the objective Nepal Monitor was founded to serves before 2000, Today according to Dr. Adhikary The online journal is aimed at professionals (journalists and media entrepreneurs, academicians, development and cultural workers, lawyers, policymakers, administrators, etc)— people with expertise. It serves as a forum for the sharing of their expert views among themselves and among the wider public.

In near future, Nepal Monitor will be institutionally mobilized as the important information dissemination mechanism of his recently established (2009) organization "Media Foundation" which focuses on media and public affairs and will cover any issues of significance to the public, whether they are governmental, community-related or entrepreneurial. Reuters.com is a multi-national news agency by Thompson Reuter which runs via global network communication.
The primary objective of Nepali times.com is other than just digital archiving of it’s printed version. According to Rubeena Mahato of Nepali times, the media house receives numerious articles with assisting photographs and audio-visual material which is difficult to fit in the paper version so the online outlet has provided the readers with full version of the text with associated links, audio-visual material and added informations which can’t be included in the paper version. Blogs of Nepali Times Staff is another feature of the online venture of the nepali times.

Types of content: News (entertainment, political, social,), advertisement, audio-visual content, features (news and photo), horoscope, currency, movies and events details, flight details

Nepal Monitor publishes annual report of multi-national organization like Asian Development Bank and UNESCO which expresses serious concerns for the current affairs of Nepal. For example recent report published by Committee for protecting Journalist (CPJ‘s) 2010 Impunity Index shows that in Nepal Seven Murders of media personal were unsolved. Similarly it doesn’t publish entertainment news nor do photos like Nepali Times and Reuters. Follow up stories on media controversies or journalistic attack events and timely interviews with media persons are updated in Nepal Monitor. Its contents are more like semi-academic or research based texts which are eligible to get published in journals.

Nepal Monitors provides links to the important ministries, film industries offices, governmental and non-governmental institutions, colleges and universities of Nepal etc. It’s more like a spot from where people access becomes wider and more systematic.

Nepali times published politico-analytical article by hiring experts and columnist throughout the national and international boundaries as well depending on the area covered by the article. Its contents are of more diversified in regard to the feature and photo-stories related to socio-economic, political, international, and national and opinion poll surveys. Also its vacancy spot increases its demand among the readers. The staff writers are allotted with their personal blogging and the editorials have a profound impact on the people as well. Moreover, the paper covers lifestyle, health and environmental issues along with the international relations and public affair. Its outreach has extended up to a page in face book.

Ownership:

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Nepali times is owned by Himal Media Pvt. Limited, a private media institution which publishes Himal, Wave and Himal Khabar Patrika simultaneously. Nepali times.com is

Nepal Monitor is an individual venture by Dr. Dharma Adhikari with the information input from other journalists as well.

Reuters On 15 May 2007, Canada’s The Thomson Corporation merged with Reuters in a deal valued at US $17.2 billion. Thomson now controls about 53 percent of the new company, named Thomson Reuters. The chief of Thomson Reuters is Tom Glocer, the former head of Reuters. TIBCO Software

Sources of revenues

Nepal Monitor.com does not have any external sources of revenue apart from Dr. Dharma Adhikari’s personal contributions for the Annual registration of the site’s domain name which accounts for $10.00 per year. The lack of manpower has created an impediment to the revenue process as there are unable to include the advertisements. Hence, its contributors are freely volunteering in the website.

Nepali Times.com is a sefl-sustained online websites because according to Mahato of Nepali times, the websites receives revenue from advertisement placed there which has nothing to do with placement in the paper version.

Reuters In 1988, Reuters formed a joint-venture with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange to build an automated futures trading system named "Globex" at a cost of over USD$100 million

Advertisements and commercials, Financing by donors, Investment from share holders

Legal status

Nepal monitor.com is registered from Los Angeles (LA). Albeit, the domain name is registered from abroad, its web space is embedded in movable type.

Nepali times.com is registered in Nepal. Reuters.com is registered in it’s headquarter city London.

Organogram and staffing-

Nepal Monitor.com has a 6 – member co-editorial team who contribute their analytical and perspective articles irregularly. Articles are published on a rolling basis. The journal is published and edited by Dharma Adhikari. Co-editor is Chiranjibi Kafle. The core team of volunteers includes Krishna Sharma (staff writer), Babu Ram Fyuba (research), Prabhat Kiran (research) and Chhabi Adhikari (IT).
Nepali Times has mobilized a full time staff for uploading content on web apart from other technical stuffs. Rubeena Mahato of Nepali times states that she has been uploading content on web in coordination with other editorial members from paper versions. Online section of Nepali Times receives content via email and then it is uploaded by a online staff.

Mechanism for gate-keeping: filtering, censoring, exaggeration

Nepal Monitor manages its website published content through sequential process. First the topic for writings is suggested to the contributors then it is accessed in terms of viability and then drafted and edited thoroughly. At times articles are rejected when the sufficient facts and figures along with proper citations are missing.

The Nepal Times organizes weekly- board meeting before setting out in print and online. A staff is mobilized full- time for updating the content. The editors of the print version participate in the online- editing process as well.

Reuters.com is an international media house which mobilizes its team members in the various parts of the world along with collaborating with the local media.

Provision for feedback: (Letters to the editor, commentary box, email, telephone; no. of readers and website visitors)

Nepal Monitor has its commentary box for immediate feedback. Also, Dr.Adhikary organizes a weekly discussion program on its published content and serious issues. He often entertains telephone feedback and queries from the readers.

The Nepali times.com has the letter to the editor along with email feedback services. One of the noticeable feedback mechanisms is its filtering process of comments. Nepali times receive comments national and foreign readers from different corners of the world but all comments are not accepted. According to Mahato of Nepali times, the comments which projects racism, individual anger or against nationalism etc are not accepted.

Target audience:

Nepal Monitors targets professionals (journalists and media entrepreneurs, academicians, development and cultural workers, lawyers, policymakers, administrators, etc) — people with expertise. And also the aspiring journalist who want have real craze in this journalism sector.

Reuters: International financial business organizations, citizens, institutions, Foreign market throughout the world.

Nepali times target diplomatic communities, foreign readers, and Nepali diasporas.

Appraisal of the content:

1. Geographical coverage: Nepali Times.com focuses more on the national news then on the international issues. Nepalese living on Diaspora are also highlighted.

Nepal Monitor.com is more specific in terms of its coverage as it only deals with the media-related and academic and scholarly articles.

Reuters.com being an international media house believes in the diversification and the world-wide dissemination of information relating to various genres.

2. Diversity of issues: Nepali Times.com highlights the national, cultural, environmental, health, sports, and travel and Nepalese lifestyles.

Nepal Monitor.com highlights the peace-building, serious and developmental issues related to the nation by giving a global perspective.

Reuters.com has a vast coverage in terms of its content, scope and nature of the issues. The burning global issues are highlighted. The showbiz and entertainment section is explored at great depth.

 

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Competition, Convergence and Symbiosis: Online Media

Posted in Global Media, Media by Shekhar on April 17, 2011

Lecture By: Asst. Prof Nirmala Mani Adhikary, KU

Date: April 15, 2011

(Big Note: Grammatical mistakes are not to be taken seriously in this note.)

The class was somewhat interactive i.e sir asked questions and students replied. Incase students didn’t address the question sir used to do it. How the advent of Online media has changed the concept of traditional Mass Communication? Interms of sender, only professional communicator had access to the medium but now anybody can disseminate the information or news.

In next class all students are supposed to bring the data regarding how many Nepalese’s has director, secondary or tertiary access to internet? Also in April 22, 2011 Friday, all students are supposed to come up with their presentation slide over their respective websites profile. The question goes like below:

Select any three website at least (one from Nepal; at least one a news portal; at least one in Nepali medium; at least one from USA; at least one owned by independent non-conglomerate non-crossholding owners). Then prepare profile of the websites. The profile must contain following information.

– website foundation

– objective

– types of content

– ownership

– sources of revenues: advertisement payment existing or not;

– legal status- registration, legal provisions for that kind of websites,

– organogram and staffing:

– mechanism for gate-keeping: what kind of moderation: whether there is editorial board;

– provision for feedback

– target audience:

– appraisal of the content

Students are supposed to present the profile of following websites on 22 April 2011.:

www.inseconline.com

www.mysansar.com

www.theguardian.com

www.ventzine.com

www.twitter.com

www.namrakura.com

www.unicefvoy.org.com

www.eanepal.com

www.facebook.com

www.nepalnews.com

www.samriddhi.org.np

www.wikipaedia.com

www.environmentnepal.com.np

www.usdaily.com

www.dautari.org

www.nagariknews.com

www.brickclean.net

www.weeklynepal.com

www.anotherme.org

www.usnepalonline.com

www.navabharattimes.com

www.cybersansar.com

www.neptv.org

www.onlinekhabar.com

www.bbcnepali.co.uk/nepali

www.wikileaks.com

www.voanews.org

www.mfashionista.com

www.bishwadeepweekly.com

www.pokharacity.com

www.nepaljapan.com

www.youtube.com

Apart from Assignment details, the following portion contains the lecture notes of Online media.

We discussed three concepts. First was competition among online and traditional mass medium. Second was the existence of online media as the convergence of traditional media content.

Interms of message how online media is different from traditional media? The information has become more personalized but earlier it used to be more formalized. For example certain segments, categorised content are preferred in Radio and TV stations but now a days the message might not be in particular format.Online content may not be decoded so easily as the messages of traditional media like print.

Regulation mechanism of Online media differs from place to place. In Nepal it should be registered in the Department of Information. Regulatory mechanism of Online media in Nepal Telecommunication Authority. NTA authorizes NTC, N-cell and other mobile services. But the regulatory mechanism may be difficult because the sender may be anonymous. Proxy sites may be there. Nirmal shared us that once when he was working in Insec online, he had to report on the blockage of cpnm.org, the then sites of Maoist. Sir, to view the site details, opened guardster.com through which he had access to cpnm.org. What are Mirror sites?(search in Google)

Discuss the Online media competition, convergence and symbiosis with examples? (this question may come in final exam in 10 marks).

Print media has other versions in todays digital age for example Print media-Newspapers; e-newspapers, Magazine; e-zines, Books; e-book

Broadcast media has other versions too like Radio: podcasting, TV-video-casting, Film-e-movies;, recording

lets focus on the difference between online books and e-books? Not all e-books are online books. Popular book website namely www.4share.com provides online-books. Once online-books are saved in the dextop they are e-book. All books should be converted into e-book before they are uploaded to web. Once they are available online, they are online- book. Again when we download it into dextop they are e-book which we can use even we are out of internet connection.

In case of podcasting, we don’t have any radio stations but sound-signals already converted into digital signals or information in audio format which can be accessed online.

Standardization: It is a important terminology in media. It’s the principle of producing the content in particular format, proceed further through particular mechanism and follow particular pattern of dissemination. How we differentiate opinion article and news from features is related with the concept of standardization. for details visit www.adhikary.wordpress.com and see related article.

We are terming online-radio, online-television because the contents are based on the standardization followed by Radio and television. There are online-only-radio like radio Dobhan. But there may be radio content being disseminated with the presence of any such radio stations then that is podcasting. All those audio-visual content which are available online are podcasting.

Physically no radio but online audio content are broadcasted in real time referred to online-radio-only. Conventionally former two type of online radio content could be recognized as podcasting.

Online form of print media are E-newsletter and E-zine like  www.ventzine.com. E-book could be sold through online and also kindle. Kindle is something like i-pad which can read books.

OPAC: Its full form is “Online public access catalogue”. Here all the information regarding book stored in the library can be accessed. In Nepal OPAC is  available in National Library situated in Harihar Bhawan. They provide ISNN for journals and magazine. In the similar manner For books we use ISBN provided by TU Central library.

Film: They have online version. For example Slumdog Millionaire was planned to release through theatre and DVDs. Some sites like torrents can provide film online.

Now we have all conventional mass media converged into one form of media whether it is radio, television or print. And that is online media.

Competition: The issue of competition referred to competition for revenue, competition for audience and content. People might stop subscribing newspaper if they have access to newspaper online. In the context of US and British, decrease in subscribing newspaper has been seen due to advent of online  e-newspaper. Direct sales revenue and advertising sales revenue has decreased in certain places of the world but not in Nepal. Competition between print and online: Christian Science Monitor, Chicago Times got collapsed because audience shifted to online but advertiser are there. The profit seemed not be as per earlier. In Nepal, janastha weekly website charge for online news. In www.weeklynepal.com most of weeklies are available but in Janastha the case is different.

www.harilo.com is e-commerce site famous in Nepal nowadays.

symbiosis in Online media: Traditional media has their won existence but they existing in symbiotic association with Film industry. there are television channels completely making films as their agenda or core content of broadcasting.

Demassification: like wise how we studies the concept of market segmentation in Integrated Marketing Communication, the concept of demassification is broadly discussed in the context of online media too. to identify specialized market segments. What Cybersansar.com target is different from Onlinekhabar.com. Cybersansar is devoted to show-bizz industry while online khabar publish textual-audio-visual content of different themes. In online media such demassification occurs. likewise youtube being bought by google marks the different kind of ownership in online media.

Scope of Online media?: Online media might have many functions as of that regular and traditional mass media like information, surveillance, linkage, advertisement, transmission of values etc. but the unique one is the existence of Virtual community; networking among vast array of people. In case of radio there are listeners club, in case of newspaper there are readers club but then there the physical presence is mandatory or it is needed. On other side this virtual world can be seen as the analogy of Shankaracharya’s interpretative “mithya” world. The virtual world is there but it doesn’t demand physical existence.

Benedict Anderson is the write who coined imagined community who has explained nationalism, sports fandom etc. We have virtual version of our own Nepal. In google earth, one can locate and tag their own home address and form their won virtual world.

Netigen is counterpart of network like citizen of country.

Online media has exerted influence on different domain.

Social : Shadi.com and Second Saadi.com (for widowed or divorced person).

Cultural: transmission of values of certain culture

Economic:

Political :

Education: online university; tele-medicine; tele-marketing. We can conduct online classs.

e-commerce, e-banking, virtual tour are examples of benefits of internet.

Finally Nirmala sir made Devyani and Usha tell the anecdotal story of “ dudh pokhari banauda pani pokhari”

Online literacy program will promote the pertinent use of Internet, so in order tot make effective use of Online for the betterment of the national and society, online literacy program should be conducted. Once when all the people have access to Internet then there is no guarantee that the access to internet will turn out to be positive. So in such case Online literacy program play the significant role.  Internet should be used Not only for visiting pornographic class, not for chat and games or entertainment but also research, promoting peace and development, education and awareness program etc. Online media has Social, cultural , economic, political significance too.

Principles and Basics of Television

Posted in Bachelor in Media Studies, Prem Luitel, Media, television by Shekhar on April 14, 2011

television

Text: Shekhar KC

Lecture by : Prem Luitel, NTV

Date: 13 April Wednesday 2011

Venue: BMS room, Dolmc

Prem sir reviewed the students about the last class. we were given assignment about finding different ways of  television coverage about a single issue. In the last week there were a series of events like Gokarna Bista, a newly appointed minister attacked on that very day of his appointment, expansion of Jhala Nath Khanal’s cabinet; sir wanted us to find the difference in time allocation; depth of the issue; horizon of the different aspects of the events covered etc. In this class basically we will focus on the principles of Television journalism.

He handed over the programme schedule of Nepal Television where he is professionally involved. He introduced NTV as a general television unlike News24 and Avenues Television which are news channel. NTV operated on the basis of guideline formed by Ministry of communication and information under Nepal Government. It follow Communication Act, Broadcasting Act and also other. The programs of NTV are aimed at promoting good health, development and peace and social harmony at community and national level. To say more such programme should Develop social consciousness and democratic values. They mustn’t leave any adverse impact on healthy relationship with neighboring countries, should go in line with foreign policies. Nepal has also its own foreign policy which is the blend of Pancha sila and UN Charter. It contains co-existency and friendly relationship with all states. Amol,my dear colleague asked about the Nepal’s view on Tibet issues and Anti-China protest. Sir replied that Nepal has adopted One-China policy so Nepal accepts Tibet and Taiwan as a part of China.  Rhitik Roshan’s scandle was also discussed regarding the role of media in neighboring countries. Sir also told that NTV being owned by Nepal government might be influenced by the interest of political party in Power. Programme shouldn’t broadcast programme that create terror in the country. It shouldn’t devalue anybody’s cultural values. We added the example of News24 covering the issue of nationality in one of it’s Jaya swabhiman programme.

Sir suggested us to do further research on the topic inorder to draw the conclusion before generalizing things. We as a media students should carryout out systematic study in the concerned topic before establishing certain particular conclusion. Yunus Ansari who operated Television station to fulfill his business motive failed in his media venture.

Television needs tranied profesionals, expensive equipment. It needs a lot of investments.

Prem sir asked if we can produce short documentaries like we did in summer training some 1 year back. he said – “you can use your own simple camera to make it ”. We should have knowledge of different types of Cameras.

In program production various elements to be in consideration are concepts; planning; scripts etc. Live transmission is available through OB Van.

terrestrial system of broadcasting: electronic radiation is transmitted from tower installed in land to the receiver in Land itself. It is relatively affordable than satellite. Terrestrially transmitted channels are for public and freely available whose signal can be received by simple antenna. This technology is useful  for low income and remotely habitat people.

Satellite system of broadcasting:

TV jargons need to be understood and learnt by media students. Sir suggested to surf net for accessing such TV jargon.

Women at Agriculture: An Eco-feministic Perspective

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on June 22, 2010


Introduction:

The word “Eco-feminism” was coined by French Feminist Francoise. She described the violence on women and nature as result of male domination. An eco-feminist perceives male domination as the root cause of all social problems. Charlene Spretnak states in her article “Critical and Constructive Contributions of Eco-feminism” that eco-feminism brings attention to the linked domination of women and nature in order that both aspects can be adequately understood. (Spretnak, Charlene. “Critical and constructive Contributions of Ecofeminism.” worldviews and Ecology< http://media.pfeiffer.edu/lridener/courses/ECOFEM.HTML&gt;). In other words, an eco-feministic critical approach attempts to women’s creative attachment towards nature while observing men’s activities naturally as the cause of destruction.

Research Study:

A small scale focus group was conducted among seven women of Vandole, Dhulikhel. The aim was to examine how their daily works manifest their attachment towards nature and growth (creation).

Devaki Shrestha of Vandole, is a 46 year old house wife whose household work, from early in the morning to the bed-time at night, includes brooming her home premise, preparing tea and meal for her whole family (most of whom only wake up one hour late than Devaki), fetching water from the nearby Dhungedhara (traditional water-tape made of stone), spraying water in the flower vase and following the ritual commands as carried by their culture. According to Spretnak, “the feminine” is associated with emotion, body, nature, connectedness, receptivity and the private sphere. A close look at Devaki’s lifestyle shows that her involvement in the household activities like preparing food and fetching water from the nearby Dhungedhara directly contributes in the nurture of her family. Her inherent mindset for nature conservation is manifested through her involvement in gardening.

In a question asked about her husband, she reveals her husband’s daily routine which is quite different from her. The morning starts with screeching sound as well as fuming smoke of starting bike. This act surely doesn’t sound environment friendly. Besides that, she complains about her husband throwing tantrum at people, in phone calls or around him, if something goes against his expectation. This fact strengthens the explanation given by the principle of eco-feminism that male activities naturally result in destructive output. (Spretnak, Charlene. “Critical and constructive Contributions of Ecofeminism.” worldviews and Ecology< http://media.pfeiffer.edu/lridener/courses/ECOFEM.HTML&gt;).  In other words, Men traits are not coherent with the beauty and conservation, nurture and spiritual manifestation and growth and maintenance mindset of women.

Devaki’s life is mostly spent within or around home. Her presence in the private sphere, her dedication for family care and her accountability for maintenance of family glory catches the central theory of Eco-feminism because the eco-feminist like Spretnak has associated “the feminine” with emotion, body, nature, connectedness, receptivity, and the private sphere.  (Spretnak, Charlene. “Critical and constructive Contributions of Ecofeminism.” worldviews and Ecology< http://media.pfeiffer.edu/lridener/courses/ECOFEM.HTML&gt;).

Sabitri Shrestha 46 of Khadpu, Dhulikhel complains that her husband rarely steps forward to calm their weeping child and according to her there had been many cases when her husband lost his temper and slapped the child when something trifles would go wrong. Women attachment towards the family growth is apparent in above case while it can be generalized that men naturally by their assertive nature display violence and destruction unlike peace, love and affection by women. Sita Bishunke 30 of same village says that her husband always works outside home and he is very unworried about degrading economic status of family. Despite her insist, her husband doesn’t allow her to work outside. This clearly verifies how women are prevented from exposure at larger social level while men are supposed to take less interest in home affairs.

What do you find most comfortable work for yourself? Muiya Bishunke 45 of Khadpu replies, “I work in my own local field and plough it with hand tools there. Whenever I am free, I go to my field and think about how I can produce more vegetable”.  “When asked about her husband involvement, she adds, “He is not that kind of working person. But he wouldn’t step behind to manage tractor to plough the field”. This striking difference of working pattern between men and women has also connection with the concept of eco-feminism. Women want to produce green vegetable by using the hand tools but men due their bigger materialistic aim, chooses machine to accomplish the same things that could be done by non-machinery tools. Men seem to be unconcerned or irresponsible about the harmful consequence of their act on the environment while women act are naturally adjusted in the favor of nature.

Inference at broader spectrum

It’s clear that Eco-feminism is relatively a new concept to explore the gender-based behavior in relation to their repercussions on the environmental condition. Charlene puts forward her argument that the earth, which we honor by word like “Beauty” and “Mother” would have been prevented from the present environmental destruction if women were handed over the sole responsibility to protect and promote in their own way rather than being dominated and isolated. (Spretnak, Charlene. “Critical and constructive Contributions of Ecofeminism.” worldviews and Ecology< http://media.pfeiffer.edu/lridener/courses/ECOFEM.HTML&gt;).  At the broader spectrum her argument implies that women can play constructive leading role than male in Business, politics and Education not just environmental protection. It’s their inherent traits like respect for all, honor, spirituality, emotional attachment etc that will facilitate them to produce constructive output in all fields.

Overall we can conclude Eco-Feminists shed lights on the ongoing fact that the domination of women and the domination of nature are fundamentally connected.

Workcited:

Spretnak, Charlene. “Critical and constructive Contributions of Ecofeminism.” worldviews and Ecology< http://media.pfeiffer.edu/lridener/courses/ECOFEM.HTML&gt;



Media Ethics: A Comparative Study of Eastern and Western Principles

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on June 18, 2010

Media Ethics: A Comparative Study of

Eastern and Western Principles

Abstract

This paper is an attempt to present the comprehension understanding of media ethics, both from eastern as well as western perspective. In addition, this paper is concentrated on the claim that despite various moral philosophies throughout world, there are certain common grounds where media ethics should be practiced universally. Also the paper gives justification over why the western perspective on media Ethics is incomplete without incorporating eastern moral philosophies. In the literature Review portion, I have introduced some of the renown moral philosophies from west as well as eastern world to judge ethical and unethical activities of media professionals. It is verified through local media cases like that eastern moral philosophies especially Hindu ethical philosophies are themselves sufficient to give the comprehensive understanding of media ethics. At the end of the paper, various eastern and Western philosophies are credited as a source of derivation of various canons and principles of journalism. By going through this paper, One is expected to understand that ethical standards of media professionals should be maintained at some common grounds i.e one shouldn’t be unaware of various colliding moral philosophies. This paper was produced to fulfill the assignment of MEDS 305, Media Ethics and law.

Background

In media, ethics play a key role to establish credibility and win the heart of their audience. Unethical media practices have brought many controversial issues followed by lethal consequences like that of Srisha Karki, a rising Nepali actress who happen to suicide after seeing her naked photo in one of the Nepali magazine. This create a urge to prevent such unethical practice by implanting the necessity of media ethics. It is a very humiliating fact that Nepali media are still on the another side of Media ethics except few.

For instances, As included in the Samhita, A quarterly publication of Press Council of Nepal, there are some examples of unethical practices in Nepal like

– Plagiarizing editorial of others newspapers.

– publishing the newspapers just by filling the paper with irrelevant media contents.

– There are some newspapers who don’t follow the conventional journalistic standards like putting byline, dateline etc.

– Enrolling journalist who don’t even have a little knowledge of Journalistic code of Ethics and Government policy over media.

– Use of vulgar words in Advertisement that attack in our Nepali cultural sentiments.

Above example shows that media practices in Nepal is very unethical. Those media professionals, involved in unethical practices, need to know and implement the journalist code of conduct, also a code of media ethics. The present situation seems like media ethics, which most of time are influenced from western world, is not working in Nepali media environment.

There is a possibility that if media professionals are given understanding of media ethics from eastern world, then it may show its relevance in making the media, whether be it a print or broadcast, a credible one.

Media Ethics and its significance

“Ethics means the principle of conduct governing an individual or a profession. Ethics is concerned with distinguishing between good and evil in the world, between right and wrong human actions, and between virtuous and non-virtuous characteristics of people. ” (Studying Mass media Ethics, pp-1)

Our own Hindu Scriptures says that ethics is the fundamental factor that distinguish human beings from animals, hence ethics should be taken as the part of our life.

According to our own Hindu perspectives, Ethics is directly related to “Dharma” the holy word which can’t be replaced by any other word in English because it includes all the guidelines for the human conduct or behavior which leads to final destiny i.e Moksha. In our eastern Society, the ethical guidelines given by Dharma are relevant and working recipe to make everyone moral and happy. (MBM Mass media Ethics, pp-50)

Ethics is an integral part of any type of professionals. Media professionals most of the times have to work with people living in the society of certain cultural background, so they need to apply media ethics to make their work balanced and moral. Media itself can’t be ethical or unethical but the way media professionals use the media may be ethical or unethical. They should be guided by ethics while taking various decision regarding journalistic activities. Here, ethical standard of Media professionals counts a lot.

Media Ethics is branch of philosophy seeking to help journalist and other media people determine how to behave in their work. In its practical application, it is very much a normative science of conduct, with conduct considered primarily self determined, rational and voluntary. (Mass Media Ethics, pp-1).

“According to Mc Quail, media ethics are ‘Principles of good conduct for media practitioners, bearing in mind the public role to the media in a given society, as well as the claims of individuals.’ They also focus on ‘how’ of media conduct like how the media practitioners should gather information and process them, how to handle these information and present them. As media is thought to be influential and sensitive profession, focus is also given on the conduct of the professionals. “-(MBM Anthology of Media Ethics pp-26).

Gordon and Kottross States: Media ethics concerns right and wrong, good and bad, better and worse actions taken by people working for the medial media themselves, of course, cannot be ethical or unethical- only their staff members can, when we deal with media ethics, we are really concerned with ethical standards of media workers what kinds of actions they take. (MBM Anthology of Media Ethics pp-27)

Holistic Understanding of Media Ethics

Despite Nepal having her own distinct cultural identity and her own native ethical ideas , most often we understands ethics in the way Westerners have advocated. This situation needs to be changed.

western morality provides ineffective grounding for duties to others because it cannot show the individual how the performance of these duties is related to achieving a specific conception of good and worthwhile life.

This paper put some light on media ethics from eastern and western perspective.

Media Ethics from Eastern Perspective

Hindu Ethics: Ethics for Hindus stems from Hindu religious texts. Hindus are obligatory to follow guidelines given by those shastras, traditions and customs.. Vedic Scriptures includes what is or is not to be done.

Ethics is directly related to Dharma in Hinduism. Dharma can’t be replaced by any such word like religion in English. Dharma has its own existence. In all those dharma shastras, found in Mahabharata, Ramayana, puranas etc have guidelines for human conduct which will help them to attain final destiny i.e Moksha.

“Vedic Hindu Philosophy, the foremost tradition of philosophy, and expressed in the Sanskrit language, comprises many diverse schools of thought. It is quite interesting that no other philosophical tradition is as rich as what is called Hinduism. It incorporates various views, from extreme spiritual to extreme materialistic. ” (Studying Mass Media Ethics, pp-7)

Different schools of thought within Hindu are categorized within

1) The mainstream Schools: It include six philosophies like Mimamsa, Vedanta, Vaisheshika, Nyaya, Samkhya and Yoga.

2) The Alternative Schools: It consist of Buddhism, Jainism, and Charvaka.

3) The latter-day School: The philosophies under this schools are within Vedic Hindu Tradition, but evolved relatively later, are classified under this. Some of them have belief in VEda; some of them like to attach with other Hindu Dharmasastras like Ramayana, Bhagvaadgeeta; and some of them are very critical to Hinduism.

“HIndu ethics consists a highly refined moral sensibility visualized with standards of character and conduct. Hindu classical philosophers often think about ethics in connection with the notion of Karma, and incarnation. Since, on the presumption of Karma, the nature of ones’ deeds determines one’s future state, the universe includes laws of moral payback.

Vedic way of life emphasized to conquer all of the purusharthachatustaya (four goals of human life)– dharma, artha, kama, and moksha. However, mysticism, the claim that ultimate truth is only obtainable through spiritual experience, dominates much ancient Hindu philosphy. Such experiences are thought to reveal a supreme and transmundane (beyong ordinary experience) reality and to privde the meaning of life. Mysticism shapes mch classical and modern Hindu throught as well. Throught meditation and the meditative techniques of yoga, it is believed that one discovers atma, and associates with Brahma, that is, attains moksha.

The ethics outlined in puranas can be understood by one example from Vishnu Puran: ‘Atmanam Pratikulai Paresham na samacharet”- That is, not to do anything that you do not entertain for yourself.

The first ever legal code in the world, the Manusmriti says: “Satyam Bruyat Priyam Bruyat Ma Bruyat Satyamapriyam; Priyam Cha Nanrituam Bruyadesha Dharma Sanatana”–that is, tell only the things that are both truth and good.

Chanakya says: “Tyajedekam Kulasyarthe Gramasyarthe kulam tyajet; Gramam Janapadasyarthe Atmarthe Prithiveem Tyajet”– that is, good for the greatest number in societal matters and good for the atma (soul) in spritual matters”. (Studying Mass media Ethics, pp 9-10)

Here, it is necessary to explain how a media professional will act from Hindu perspective. A media professional should only publish or broadcast those contents that is truth and good. A journalist should place himself as a audience, for whom the news is targeted, before publishing any news and evaluate what possible harm it can cause to others. Hindu ethics doesn’t allow one person to hurt others by any means.

Confucian Moral Ethics: While pursuing one’s own self-interest is not necessarily bad, one would be a better, more righteous person if one based one’s life upon following a path designed to enhance the greater good. This is doing the right thing for the right reason.

Confucius’s moral system was based upon empathy and understanding others, rather than divinely ordained rules. Virtue, in this Confucian view, is based upon harmony with other people, produced through this type of ethical practice by a growing identification of the interests of self and other.

In this regard, Confucius articulated an early version of the Golden Rule:

• “What one does not wish for oneself, one ought not to do to anyone else; what one recognizes as desirable for oneself, one ought to be willing to grant to others.” (Confucius and Confucianism, Richard Wilhelm)

• To know your faults and be able to change is the greatest virtue.”

• “What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others.”

• “With coarse rice to eat, with water to drink, and my crooked arm for a pillow – is not joy to be found therein? Riches and honors acquired through unrighteousness are to me as the floating clouds.”

• “Knowledge is recognizing what you know and what you don’t.”

Here, it is necessary to explain that from Confucian view of ethics, while publishing news a media professional should pursue for goodness of greater audience rather pleasing owners and Publishers through biased news.

Islamic Ethics: “Regardless of their environment, humans are believed to have a moral responsibility to submit to God’s will and to follow Islam.”, is the essence of Islamic Ethics. Generally, guidelines for media ethics are derived from text included in Quran, the holy book of Islamic.

Media Ethics from Western Perspective

Golden mean: Aristotle’s theory of Golden mean states that it should one’s action that leads to the realization of the good of the human being. The end is realized through the continuous acting in accordance with virtues. One must firs acquire virtues by parental upbringing, experience and reasons. Here, happiness is not only the materialistic one, but the ultimate goal of human beings, desired for itself. Golden mean emphasizes the balance between two extremes i.e. vices. For example Aristotle says, ‘ It’s easy to be angry, but to be angry at the right time, for the right reason, at the right person and in the right intensity must truly be brilliant.”

Thomas Aquinas Ethics: Aquinas follows Aristotle in thinking that an act is good or bad depending on whether it contributes to or deters us from our proper human end—the telos or final goal at which all human actions aim.

Also, Aquinas believes that we can never achieve complete or final happiness in this life. For him, final happiness consists in beatitude, or supernatural union with God. Such an end lies far beyond what we through our natural human capacities can attain.

The basic human goods which first practical principles identify and direct us to are identified by Aquinas as (i) life, (ii) “marriage between man and woman and bringing up ), (iii) knowledge, (iv) living in fellowship with others, (v) practical reasonableness itself, and (vi) knowing and relating appropriately to the transcendent cause of all being, value, normativity and efficacious action.

Augustine Ethics : Augustine hold the idea on ethics that moral evil exist due to deficiency or lack of good and human will is the sole cause of moral evil.

We have already had occasion to explain certain basic points of Augustine’s moral or ethical doctrine when we spoke of the human will as the sole cause of moral evil. Augustine’s theory concerning evil is his greatest philosophico-theological discovery — particularly his distinction between metaphysical evil, which is a deficiency or lack of being, and moral evil, which is a deficiency or lack of good. We have already had occasion to explain certain basic points of Augustine’s moral or ethical doctrine when we spoke of the human will as the sole cause of moral evil. Augustine’s theory concerning evil is his greatest philosophico-theological discovery — particularly his distinction between metaphysical evil, which is a deficiency or lack of being, and moral evil, which is a deficiency or lack of good.

Immanuel Kant’s Ethics: Kant theory on ethics is duty-based or deontological. It judges morality on the basis of nature of actions and the will of agents rather than the goal achieved. Kant believed that when we stick to our duty then results are good. For kant, outcomes doesn’t matter because according to him, what type of action we should follow is within our control but the result or future is not in our control. He said that to act morally is to perform one’s duty, and one’s duty is to obey the innate moral laws.

Kant’s three significant formulations of the categorical imperative are:

• Act only according to that maxim by which you can also will that it would become a universal law.

• Act in such a way that you always treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never simply as a means, but always at the same time as an end.

• Act as though you were, through your maxims, a law-making member of a kingdom of ends.

Categorical imperatives hold the maxim that true morality should not depend on our individual likes and dislikes or on our abilities and opportunities. These are historical “accidents;” any ultimate principle of ethics must transcend them. Among the various formulations of the categorical imperative, two are particularly worth noting:

• Always act in such a way that you can also will that the maxim of your action should become a universal law.

or

• Act so that you treat humanity, both in your own person and in that of another, always as an end and never merely as a means.

Stoics Ethics: The Stoics defined the goal in life as living in agreement with nature. Humans, unlike all other animals, are constituted by nature to develop reason as adults, which transforms their understanding of themselves and their own true good. The Stoics held that virtue is the only real good and so is both necessary and, contrary to Aristotle, sufficient for happiness; it in no way depends on luck. The virtuous life is free of all passions, which are intrinsically disturbing and harmful to the soul, but includes appropriate emotive responses conditioned by rational understanding and the fulfillment of all one’s personal, social, professional, and civic responsibilities. The Stoics believed that the person who has achieved perfect consistency in the operation of his rational faculties, the “wise man,” is extremely rare, yet serves as a prescriptive ideal for all. The Stoics believed that progress toward this noble goal is both possible and vitally urgent.

Utilitarian Theory: “Actions are right to the degree that they tend to promote the greatest good for the greatest number” is the main mantra of Utilitarian Theory. Utilitarianism’s best know advocate, John Stuart Mill, characterizes utilitarianism as the view that “an action is right in-so-far as it tends to produce pleasure and the absence of pain”

An action may be considered right if it produces the greatest amount of pleasure and the least pain of any available alternative action. This normative theory of right action is based on the theory of value that takes happiness conceived of as pleasure and the absence of pain to be the only things of intrinsic value.

There was a case of car accident on the Prithvi Highway where a local was killed by a Chaudhary Group vehicle. Later the accident was suppressed by money, even main stream media wouldn’t publish such news as they wouldn’t dare to expose the wrong deed of a rich industrialist. This is the example where a media did a act for the few good and ignore the sentiment of large local people who were protesting against Chaudhary Group. This is unethical from Utilitarian Perspective.

Relevance of moral philosophies in Media.

After having the understanding of some of the most renown ethical Philosophies from western and eastern, now we can point out the relevance and the strength of its application for media professionals.

“Over time journalist have developed nice core principles to meet the task. They comprise what might be described as the theory of journalism:

1. Journalism first obligation is to the truth.

2. Its first loyalty is to citizens.

3. Its essence is a discipline of verification.

4. Its practitioners must maintains independence from those they cover.

5. it must serve as an independent monitor of power.

6. It must provide a forum for publication criticism and compromise.

7. It must strive to make the significant interesting and relevant.

8. It must keep the news comprehensive and proportional.

9. Its practitioners must be allowed to exercise their personal conscience.

American society of Newspaper Editors (ASNE) explains the following canons of journalism:

1. Responsibility

2. Freedom of the Press

3. Independence.

4. Truth and accuracy.

5. Impartiality

6. fair play.” (Introduction to journalism and Mass Communication pp 184-188)

Above principles and Cannons of journalism were founded to make the media profession disciplined, balanced and credible. In others words we can say, the objective of those principles were to make the media ethical. We can related those canons and principles with various ethical philosophies from west as well we east, however my intention is to explain bases on eastern Philosophies.

As we know that media ethics concerns good and bad, right and wrong actions followed by media professionals, so when their actions is right or wrong is explained below.

Journalist is first obligatory to publish or broadcast the media content that are true and right. The same theme is advocated by the first ever legal code in the world, the Manusmriti: ” Satyam Bruyat Priyam Bruyat Ma Bruyat Satyamapriyam; Priyam Cha Nanrituam Bruyadesha Dharma Sanatana”–that is, tell only the things that are both truth and good. ” Hindu Philosophy give more broader understanding about truth. It says that ultimate truth is only obtainable through spiritual experience.

Empathy is considered to be one of the characteristics of a ethical journalism especially for Crime journalist. In other words, a journalist shouldn’t expose the name of the rape victims and child criminals. This notion is explained by ethics outlined in puranas from Vishnu Puran:”Atmanam Pratikulani Paresham na samacharet”– that is, not to anything that you do not entertain for yourself.

Similarly Confucius’s moral system was based upon empathy and understanding others.

Chanakya’s statement: “Tyajedekam Kulasyarthe Gramasyarthe Kulam Tyajet; Gramam Janapadasyarthe Atmarthe Prithiveem Tyajet.”– that is, good for the greatest number in societal matters and good for the atma (soul) in spiritual matter, can be very helpful for media professionals to take ethical decisions since most of the their work are centered within the society they live.

The present insecurity among the media professionals in Nepal, where media professionals are being attacked, would have been prevented if everybody had understood the ethics of Mimamasa.

Mimamsa is one of the school of thoughts with in Hinduism which gives importance to ‘theory of Karma’. This theory states that good actions produce good fruit, evil action produce evil fruits. Every journalist seems necessary to be guided by karmayoga which holds that “when duty is performed in a spirit of dedication to god it becomes the cause of emancipation.”

Mimamsa will take a journalist action of exposing the name of culprit ethical if the culprit involvement in the crime is confirmed. As said earlier ‘ evil action will produce evil fruits’, culprit should be punished for his/her crime or harm deed to other.

“Morality, fair play, ethics and justice are the basis of karmayoga” (Bodhi pp 30). This is the evidence that why both western and eastern world have given so much importance to fair play as canon of a journalism.

Conclusion

After understanding the concept of media ethics and moral philosophies, we can conclude that there is not any concrete answer to whether a act of media professional is ethical or unethical . But there are some meeting points among all moral philosophies that should be followed by media professionals. Those ethical standard should be maintained at any cost. IN other words, all the published content should be truth, accurate and shouldn’t harm others and respect for humanity should be maintained at any cost. Media ethics is not solely derived from western principles but eastern philosophies too are themselves the source of media ethics.

Work Cited:

1. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani. (2007). Studying Mass Media Ethics Kathmandu: Prashanti Prakashan.

2. Khanal, Shri Ram. (2005). Media Ethics and Law Kathmandu: Bidhyarthi Pustak Bhandar.

3. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani. “Exploring New Paradigm in Mass Media Ethics.” MBM Anthology of Media Studies. Kathmandu: CSC, Madan Bhandari Memorial College, 2007(pp 57-72).

4. Adhikary, Nimala Mani. “Mimamsa-Philosophy and Mass Media Ethics” BODHI An Interdisciplinary Journal. Dhulikhel: Department of Languages and Mass Communication, 2007.

5. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani. “Manusmriti as a Resource for Media Ethics.” MBM Anthology of Media Ethics (2010). Kathmandu: Department of Journalism and Mass Communication and Communication Study Center (CSC) (pp 47-50), Madan Bhandari Memorial College

6. Poudel, Ram Chandra. “An appraisal on the origin of the Veda.” Bodhi An interdisciplinary Journal

7. Pant, Laxman Datt. “Basic Practices in Journalism.” Introduction to Journalism and Mass communication (2009). Kathmandu: Vidyarthi Prakashan (p) ltd, Ktm Nepal.

8. Press Council Nepal Annual Report 2009, Kathmandu

9. Code of Journalistic Ethics-2003 (Amended and Revised-2008); Press Council Nepal; Kathmandu

10. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani; Understanding Mass Media Research; Prashanti Pustak Bhandar, Kathmandu; 2006

11. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani; Communication Research and Media Observation; Prashanti Pustak Bhandar, Kathmandu; 2007

12. SAMHITA- A Quarterly Publication of Press Council Nepal (2010)

13. Pradhan, Raj Narayan; Pocket English-Nepali Dictionary; Educational Publication House, Kathmandu; 2003

14. Wimmer, Roger D., and Joseph R. Dominick. Mass Media Research An Introduction. 7th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 2003 and Dominik; Mass Media Research;

Websites Cited:

http://webs.wofford.edu/kaycd/ethics/util.htm

http://personal.bellevuecollege.edu/wpayne/utilitarianism.htm

http://members.fortunecity.com/rsrevision/kantandthecatimp.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deontological_ethics#Immanuel_Kant

http://webs.wofford.edu/kaycd/ethics/deon.htm

http://cco.cambridge.org/book?id=ccol0521650186_CCOL0521650186

http://www.radicalacademy.com/philaugustine2.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utilitarianism

http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/hum_303/enlightenment.html

http://www.csudh.edu/phenom_studies/western/lect_8.html

http://www.muslimphilosophy.com/ip/rep/H018.htm

http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415555197/

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/aquinas-moral-political/

http://www.iep.utm.edu/aq-moral/

Mimamsa Ethics

Posted in Media by Shekhar on June 18, 2010

Introduction:
The word “Mimamsa” mean “Investigation, inquiry or Discussion”. It’s basically the proper way of interpretation of Vedic text, that also the earlier portion of Vedas, so it is also called Purva Mimamsa. It is also known by Dharma Mimamsa because it is an inquiry to an Dharma established by Vedas. Another name for it is Karma Mimamsa i.e. it describes the importance of sacrificial activities in attaining the pure Dharma as the good.
It is one of the school of thoughts with in Hindu Philosophy. We have other schools of thoughts with in Hindu Philosophy namely : Vedanta, Vaisheshika, Nyaya, Samkhya and Yoga.
Mimamsa explain how a human being can achieve the mysterious, transcendent power produced by a correctly performed sacrificial ritual, not through the action of gods. The results of the sacrifice often come after the death of the person performing the ritual.
“Theory of Karma” is guided by Mimamsa Philosophy. “Karma” means “deeds”, “act” or “work”. Mimamsa is one of the school of thoughts with in Hinduism which gives importance to ‘theory of Karma’. This theory states that good actions produce good fruit, evil actions produce evil fruits. Every journalist seems necessary to be guided by karmayoga which holds that “when duty is performed in a spirit of dedication to god it becomes the cause of emancipation.”
“Morality, fair play, ethics and justice are the basis of karmayoga” (Bodhi pp 30). This is the evidence that why both western and eastern world have given so much importance to fair play as canon of a journalism.

Application dimension of Mimamsa Ethics:
As said by Chanakya, the practical use of Mimamsa is: it does good to mankind, makes one’s intelligence, Buddhi, settled in the midst of pleasure and pain and makes one expert, visarada, in wisdon (prajna), in speech (vakya) and in action (kriya)”. So developing a code of ethics for journalist and other media professionals based particularly on Mimamsa Philosophy seems not only rational, it also seems more practical.
Here, i claim that the present insecurity among the media professionals in Nepal, where media professionals are being attacked, would have been prevented if everybody had understood the ethics of Mimamsa and applied in their professional deeds.
Here, we can say that the (Vakya) language used in media outlet also determines the ethical standards of media. For example when a journalist is reporting about physically impaired person, using the words like ‘Andho’, ‘Bahiro’ or ‘Langado’ is unethical. Instead we can be ethical by using words like ‘Dristibihin’ for blind person.
Mimamsa will take a journalist action of exposing the name of culprit ethical if the culprit involvement in the crime is confirmed. As said earlier ‘ evil action will produce evil fruits’, culprit should be punished for his/her crime or harm deed to other. But what Unethical media do it just publish the name of the suspects and create the environment of hostility with the third party, followed by attack in the media.

Conclusion:
Hence we can maintain the ethical standards of media through the proper use of our language and action according to the Mimamsa Ethics.

Work Cited:
1. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani. (2007). Studying Mass Media Ethics Kathmandu: Prashanti Prakashan.
2. Khanal, Shri Ram. (2005). Media Ethics and Law Kathmandu: Bidhyarthi Pustak Bhandar.
3. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani. “Exploring New Paradigm in Mass Media Ethics.” MBM Anthology of Media Studies. Kathmandu: CSC, Madan Bhandari Memorial College, 2007(pp 57-72).
4. Adhikary, Nimala Mani. “Mimamsa-Philosophy and Mass Media Ethics” BODHI An Interdisciplinary Journal. Dhulikhel: Department of Languages and Mass Communication, 2007.
5. Adhikary, Nirmala Mani. “Manusmriti as a Resource for Media Ethics.” MBM Anthology of Media Ethics (2010). Kathmandu: Department of Journalism and Mass Communication and Communication Study Center (CSC) (pp 47-50), Madan Bhandari Memorial College

SAHAYATRA-An inter-College Media Students Meet 2010

Posted in Media, My life by Shekhar on May 24, 2010
Main Administrative Building of Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel.

ABSTRACT

Since there was no networking and very rare interaction among the students of media and journalism & mass communication, so we have come up with a concept to bring all the students of the same discipline .
Our aim for doing so involves
• Acquainting them to the media professionals and the media environment as their future profession
• Creating platform for the students to share their creativity and ideas
• Strengthening the discipline of Journalism & mass communication and Media in Nepal by not just connecting the students but also the academicians

Summary of the Event:

Title of the Event: SAHAYATRA
An inter-collage media students meet.

Organizer: Media Studies Group (MSG), Kathmandu University.

Date of Event: 2010 June 6th; Sunday.

Starting Time: 09:00 AM Ending Time: 05:00 PM

Location: Kathmandu University CV Raman Auditorium. Dhulikhel, Kavre.

Name of Colleges Participating (Tentative)

1. RR College:

 

2. NIC College:

 

3. Gramid Adarsha College: Nepaltar

 

4. Madan Bhandari Memorial:: Raatopul

5. Sagarmatha Multiple College: Dillibazar

 

6. Orient college: Chakrapath

7. Pasang Lhamhu Sherpa Memorial College:

8. K&K: New Baneshwor

9. Reliance Academy: Saraswotinagar, Chabahil

 10. Metro Higher Secondary School: New Baneshwor (On the way to Anamnagar)

 11. Greenfield Academy: Baffal, Kalimati

 12. Xavier International Colleg: Kalopul

13. Trinity International College: Dillibazaar height

 14. St. Xaviers:

 15. White House Colleg: New Baneshwor (On the way to Old Baneshwor).

16. Universal College: Maitidevi

 17. Golden Gate College: Battisputali

 18. CJMC

19. Navodit College :Mhepi (inside Balaju)

20. British Gurkha: Bansbari

21. Sigma College: Khusibun                       

22. SchEMS College: Chakrapath

23. Herald International College: Basundhara

24. Active Academy :Basundhara

25. Canvas Academy: Basundhara

26. KEBS Academy: Tushal, Boudhha

27. Times International College: Kalikasthan

28. Sheford College:Baluwatar.

29. Kathmandu Model College: Bagbazaar

30. St. Lawrence: Chabbhil

31. CCRC: Balkumari, Lalitpur

32. United Academy

33. Caspian Valley College:

34. Bluebird:

35. Kavre Multiple Campus: Budol, Banepa, Kavre

36. PanchaKumari Higher Secondari School: (Nala Jane bato) Banepa, Kavre

37. Hanuman Uchha Mabi: Paatlekhet, Kavre

Main Objective:
1) Network: This event will help all the media students establish a network among them and create an environment of mutual sharing.
2) Platform: The participants can use this platform to represent their college in national arena.

Target Audience: Media academicians, Media professionals, Intermediate and Bachelor students who are studying mass communication and journalism in collages of Kathmandu Valley and Kavre district.

Anticipated in Attendence: 200-250.

Introduction:
The numbers of colleges are increasing as ever in Kathmandu valley, including that of Journalism & mass communication. Bearing this fact in mind ‘SAHAYATRA’ is going to be organized by MSG, Kathmandu University on June 6th, 2010. This will be a grand platform for students to meet their contemporaries as well as get the benefit of interacting industry stalwarts and media academicians and developing relations with them.

Students’ attraction and interest toward education in mass communication and journalism is always an increasing trend. Every year lots of students get enrolled in different colleges affiliated to Tribhuvan University Board, Purvanchal University Board, Kathmandu University Board and Higher Secondary Education Board (HSEB) to study Mass Communication and Journalism. The present situation reveals that students who are pursuing their education in the mass communication field are not aware about the strength and space for improvement in the academic and professional field of the same discipline. Realizing the importance of a network, that should have been established much earlier, MSG shows its eagerness to take the first step towards this venture.

Discussion:
We are sure that the event will be very fruitful for all the participants through various activities. In the event we will invite experts from Print, Broadcast (TV+Radio), and related industries like Film, Advertising to speak at the program. Also, the dignitaries from within the university and department will address the program.
An hour long plenary will also be conducted where students and teachers will interact with each other on the topic “Multi disciplinary nature of media education.”
Pre-discussion Program:
This section will be held on the 3rd of June, 2010. Only one representative from each college will be participating in this discussion which will take place in Kathmandu Valley (the exact location and time will be informed later).
This discussion program will fix the agendas and plan of actions for the networking among different colleges. Since it takes long time for discussion regarding network, we have planned to sort it out few days earlier. Furthermore, it also helps us to get feedback regarding the event.

Photo Exhibition:
Any one interested in participating in the upcoming photo competition, please read the conditions below.
1. The participants of SAHAYATRA are eligible for the photo competition.
2. The theme is “———————————————————————–”.
3. You can submit up to 3 photos. Among all the available photos only best 25 will be placed on exhibition and out of them three photos will be prized.
4. Photos can be in black and white or colored, must be digital and must be taken by the participant.
5. Photos with text and signature are not accepted
6. Works are to be submitted as digital files to kumsg.info@gmail.com & amolsansar@gmail.com (Email address).
7. All photos are to be submitted at size no smaller than (8*10) inches with high resolution.
8. Please include your name and a brief caption for the photo with your submission.
9. The club can refuse any work that don’t meet with the conditions
10. The deadline for accepting entries is 3rd June 2010.
11. The winners (1st, 2nd and 3rd) will be judged by a photo expert.

Conclusion:
As we are organizing ‘SAHAYATRA’ in Kathmandu University on June 6th, 2010 and since this is going to be a strong platform for the Journalism and mass communication students to learn, share and grow in the same disciplined and profession, I am sure you would kindly accept our invitation and help us in making this event a grand success

Politics: Claims and Counterclaims

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on February 18, 2009

(This text is the part of Politics assignment during my 1st semester of Bachelor in Media Studies, Kathmandu University)

Question: Politics is all about claims and counterclaims. Explains the statement with appropriate examples

Bush and Blair

Bush and Blair

Ans: As said by the great scholar Aristotle “human is naturally a political animal by birth, all human becomes the active member of political society. In our society there is presence of people with diverging views, principle, logic and aim of life. There is a kind of rush in achieving a goal that may be short termed or long termed. Everybody has their own logic and proof to achieve it. Depending upon their ethical, economic, cultural and historical background some claims and remaining counterclaims, because everybody is afraid of loosing their existence in the society. It is the natural behavior of human to highlight its existence and exercise their control over other through media or organization. This is how politics is all about claims and counterclaims.

Defining politics, it has literal meaning “polis” which means city-state. So politics is the process of acquisition and application of power, allocation of scarce local resource, the practice of deception and manipulation, the making of collective decision and the exercise of local authority. Anyway anything that is concerned with general life and the future of state is related to politics directly and indirectly. Also politics is the phenomenon of conflict and cooperation because there  is the intervention of disagreement, different demands, competing needs and opposing interest of people living with in same society. Daily there is emergence of new and controversial idea in media and we can see some people supporting as well as criticizing the idea from their perspective.

Let’s verify the above statement from various examples on local, national and international level.\

A.            local level: In our society suppose there is often conflict between two brothers of a same family for possession of their father land after the death of their father .both brother will first sit together for a talk to divide their land equally .But if the lands are situated in two location then there will be questions over the economic price, societal aspects, near from market, availability and other many factors.

Incumbent Primeminister of Nepal , Mr Pushpa Kamal Dahal" Prachanda"

Incumbent Primeminister of Nepal , Mr Pushpa Kamal Dahal" Prachanda"

Of course both brother will attempt to get best land so that will have more price, quipped with electricity, near market, good society, security etc but both cant get exactly what they think .There is will rising different claims and counter claims. If the family matter is not solved then they knock the door of court. Now the matter of family matter become a societal issue .Their lawyer argument about the issue and divide the land on the judge decision .Its depends upon the logical power and self power of those brothers .Based on their claims and counterclaims, the lands at two different location will be divided not exactly in a manner they have expected because they will have to comprise on some point. This is how the issue is resolved neutrally.

Thus to regulate our society there need a rules and regulation which is applied to every people .The rights and duties are applied to every people and if there is imbalance in its use then security problem may occur. Thus state act as the check and balances in issue like above.

Recently in the Nepal political revolution, we saw a great revolution i.e. Jana Andolan 2 in Nepal. We show all the whole population crawling in the road for the down of king’s autocracy. But still kings was supposed to take the sovergnity in himself to rectify the democracy .one side the supporter of kings were claiming to sustain the kings rule and letting it to continue. On the other hand 8-party alliance was forming to behead the king from the rule. Those include congress, Maoist, communist, democratic, capitalistic party and many more. They all had their own principles, background but they compromised with each other to form the unity. After snatching the power from the King, they formed the interim government but still these leaders of different party are arguing and discussing with each other daily and shows their dissatisfaction with one another’s view .In the eye of general people they are seem to fight daily as if they have their personal rivalry but actually they do all these thing for politics’ .politics is about all the activity that concerned with the general people.

The main question is why do they fight if the decisions made by anybody are applicable to the entire citizen? Because they strongly support their claims and try to suppres other counterclaim by their principle, historical background which may have weakness of present policy, and try to highlight their existence in most appropriate way.

B. Swimming in the ocean of claim and counterclaim, the parties come to understanding, compromise and peaces talk .Finally the issue is resolved and this is how politics is done.

Its is very hard interpret the international politics because the information about the interference of powerful nation like US and Britain in our country is not openly talked. Talking about the policy of George Bush, he was ready to provide special military helicopter during the underground period of Maoist. In the government, the political leader strictly criticized the step and did not allow applying the act. On the other hand George Bush claims that he was doing that to destroy the terrorism and his statement is very famous” you are not with us then you are with terrorist”.

In politics every thing start with claims, struggle with counterclaim and end with compromise .So it is the just the art of exercising the authority and how to make believe the citizen that he is actually working fro the people, though in real sense it may not be.

So politics is something that is directly or indirectly concerned with the general life of country and it is the tool that is used to maintain ones existence in the state. The never-ending demand of human and the diverging nature of human give birth of claim and counterclaims

India, British East India Company and Westernisation

Posted in assignment, History, Media by Shekhar on February 18, 2009

(This text is the part of my assignment of  History during 1st semester of Bachelor in Media Studies, Kathmandu University.)

Question:What was the Indian reaction towards the westernization of British East India company?

Westernization:

Reaction during Independence movement:
Reaction during Independence movement:

Indian society changed much more rapidly in the second half of the 19th century than it had done in the first. The British had much more to offer Indians. Imports of Western technology had been limited before the 1850s. Thereafter a great railway system was constructed – 28,000 miles of track being laid by 1904 – and major canal schemes were instituted that more than doubled the area under irrigation in the last 20 years of the century. The railways, the vastly increased capacity of steamships, and the opening of the Suez Canal linked Indian farmers with world markets to a much greater degree. A small, but significant, minority of them could profit from such opportunities to sell surplus crops and acquire additional land. Some industries developed, notably Indian-owned textile manufacturing in western India. The horrific scale of the famines of the 1880s and 1890s showed how limited any economic growth had been, but the stagnation of the early 19th century had been broken.

Universities, colleges and schools proliferated in the towns and cities, most of them opened by Indian initiative. They did not produce replica English men and women, as Macaulay had hoped, but Indians who were able to use English in addition to their own languages, to master imported technologies and methods of organization and who were willing to adopt what they found attractive in British culture. The dominant intellectual movements cannot be called Westernization. They were revival or reform movements in Hinduism and Islam, and were the development of cultures that found expression in Indian languages.

Within the constraints of a colonial order, a modern India was emerging by the end of the 19th century. British rule of course had an important role in this process, but the country that was emerging fulfilled the aspirations of Indians, rather than colonial designs of what a modern India ought to be.

Criticizism from Indian historian:

India’s nationalist historians have blamed the British Raj for India’s poverty. The classic nationalist case is that India had been rich before the British came and colonialism weakened agriculture and “deindustrialized” India, throwing millions of artisans out of work. Bri tain’s trade policies encouraged the import of manufactures and the export of raw materials; finally, it drained the wealth of India by transferring its capital to Britain.

Nationalists claimed that Lancashire’s new textile mills crushed India’s handloom textile industry and threw millions of weavers out of work. India’s textile exports plunged from a leadership position before the start of the Britain’s Industrial Revolution to a fraction. The indigenous banking system, which financed these exports, was also destroyed. Since the colonial government did not erect tariff barriers, Indian consumers shifted to cheaper English mill-made cloth and millions of handloom workers where left in misery. British colonial rule “de-industrialised” India (a favorite nationalist phrase) and from an exporter of textiles, India became an exporter of raw cotton.17

Britain also changed the old land revenue system to the disadvantage of the farmer, who had to now pay revenue whether or not the monsoon failed. This led to famines. The worst one in 1896-97 affected 96 million lives and killed an estimated 5 million people. Although the railways helped in the trade of food crops, the enlarged national market sucked away the peasant’s surplus, which he had earlier stored for the bad years. Moreover, the British government transferred its surplus revenues back to England. Since India consistently exported more then she imported in the second half of the 19th century and early 20th century, Britain used India’s trade surplus to finance her own trade deficit with the rest of the world, to pay for her exports to India, and for capital repayments in London. This represented a massive drain of India’s wealth.18

In recent years some historians have challenged this nationalist picture. They have argued that Indian industry’s decline in the 19th century was caused by technology. The machines of Britain’s industrial revolution wiped out Indian textiles, in the same way that traditional handmade textiles disappeared in Europe and the rest of the world. Fifty years later Indian textile mills would have destroyed them. India’s weavers were, thus, the victims of technological obsolescence.

. There had been a “drain of wealth”, but it was only about 1.5 percent of GNP every year. The revisionist historians argued that India’s payments to Britain were for real military and civilian services and to service capital investments. Also, the overhead cost of the British establishment-the so called “home charges”-was in fact quite small.

The Brief history of British expansion in India:

The British East India Company was established by Queen Elizabeth I in 1600 operate the spice trade between Britain and India. The company established trading centers in Masulipattam, Surat and Madras and had competition from the French, Dutch and Portuguese, all of whom had trading interests in India.

In 1661, King Charles II of Britain married the Portuguese Princess Catharine of Braganza and received Bombay as part of her dowry. He rented it to the British East India Company at the rate of £10 per year. Later, he gave the company the right to issue currency, build forts, exercise jurisdiction over English subjects and declare war and peace with the local people

The British East India Company won the power of Diwani in Bengal after winning the Battle of Plassey in 1757, under Robert Clive. Their victory in the Battle of Buxar in 1764 won them the Nizamat of Bengal as well. Following the Permanent Settlement of Bengal shortly thereafter, the Company began to vigorously expand its area of control in India.

In 1845 the Company managed to extend its control over Sindh province after the gruelling and bloody campaign of Charles Napier . In 1848 the Second Anglo-Sikh War took place and the Company gained control of the Punjab as well in 1849, after the British Indian Army won a hard-fought victory against the Khalsa Army, who were alleged to have been betrayed by the Gulab Singh and Lal Singh. Lal Singh was a Sikh and not a Dogra while Gulab Singh was not a minister of the Lahore government but hereditary ruler of Jammu, an allied princely state. None of the other Sikh princely rulers assisted the Lahore government. To show their appreciation the British made Gulab Singh the Maharaja of Kashmir which was then part of the Punjab province. Gulab Singh was already a maharaja of Jammu and Ladakh and the British sold him the province of Kashmir for 75 lakhs. In 1853 the adopted son of Baji Rao the last Maratha Peshwa, Nana Sahib was denied his fathers titles and HEIC pension. Which by Indian custome,  some felt, should have passed to him.

In 1854 Berar was annexed as was the state of Awadh/Oudh two years later.
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During the middle of the eighteenth century, the company came to power in Bengal, Bihar and Orissa and reached an agreement with the Mughals to collect land revenue in return for maintaining order. The company expanded its control by defeating Tipu Sultan, the Marathas and by taking over Nepal, Sind, Burma and the Punjab.

The doctrine of lapse was introduced, stipulating that, if the ruler of a state died without a natural heir, the state would automatically come under British rule. Under this doctrine, the company took over the states of Satara, Nagpur and Jhansi. Oudh also was taken over on the grounds of misgovernance.

The mutiny of 1857against of British East India company
Various risings took place between 1816 and 1857 against the oppressive rule of the British East India Company. Resentment amongst the masses, the army and deposed rulers led to a major rebellion in 1857. Rulers smarting under the doctrine of lapse supported this rebellion which spread to north and central India.

Reaction during Independence movement:
As the new viceroy of India, Lord Wavell began discussions for a constitutional settlement. He proposed a new executive council with equal representation for Hindus and Muslims. Talks broke down as the Congress rejected his attempts to reduce its status to a Hindu party.

By now unrest was spreading to the armed forces. Winston Churchill was replaced by Clement Atlee as British Prime Minister and he decided to grant independence to India.

On December 9, 1946, the Congress began drafting the Indian Constitution and the Muslim League restated its demand for a separate country. India had communal riots in August 1946 and Atlee set June 1948 as the deadline for the transfer of power.

In June 1947, Congress and Muslim League leaders met Lord Mountbatten and decided that the country should be divided and given independence on August 15, 1947.

Quit India movement(1942)

The Quit India Movement (Bharat Chhodo Andolan) or the August Movement was a civil disobedience movement in India launched in August 1942 in response to Gandhi‘s call for immediate independence of India and against sending Indians to the World War II.

At the outbreak of war, the Congress Party had during the Wardha meeting of the working-committee in September 1939, passed a resolution conditionally supporting the fight against fascism, but were rebuffed when they asked for independence in return. In March 1942, faced with an increasingly dissatisfied sub-continent only reluctantly participating in the war, and deteriorations in the war situation in Europe and South East Asia, and with growing dissatisfactions among Indian troops- especially in Europe- and among the civilian population in the sub-continent, the British government sent a delegation to India under Stafford Cripps, in what came to be known as the Cripps’ Mission. The purpose of the mission was to negotiate with the Indian National Congress a deal to obtain total co-operation during the war, in return of progressive devolution and distribution of power from the crown and the Viceroy to elected Indian legislature. However, the talks failed, having failed to address the key demand of a timeframe towards self-government, and of definition of the powers to be relinquished, essentially portraying an offer of limited dominion-status that was wholly unacceptable to the Indian movement. To force the Raj to meet its demands and to obtain definitive word on total independence, the Congress took the decision to launch the Quit India Movement.

The aim of the movement was to bring the British Government to the negotiating table by holding the Allied War Effort hostage.

On August 8, 1942, the Quit India resolution was passed at the Bombay session of the All India Congress Committee (AICC). The draft proposed that if the British did not accede to the demands, a massive Civil Disobedience would be launched. However, it was an extremely controversial decision. At Gowalia Tank, Mumbai, Gandhi urged Indians to follow a non-violent civil disobedience. Gandhi told the masses to act as an independent nation and not to follow the orders of the British. The British, already alarmed by the advance of the Japanese army to the India-Burma border, responded the next day by imprisoning Gandhi at the Aga Khan Palace in Pune. The Congress Party’s Working Committee or national leadership was arrested all together and imprisoned at the Ahmednagar Fort. They also banned the party altogether. Large-scale protests and demonstrations were held all over the country. Workers remained absent en masse and strikes were called. The movement also saw widespread acts of sabotage, Indian under-ground organization carried out bomb attacks on allied supply convoys, government buildings were set on fire, electricity lines were disconnected and transport and communication lines were severed. The Congress had lesser success in rallying other political forces, including the Muslim League under a single mast and movement. It did however, obtain passive support from a substantial Muslim population at the peak of the movement.
World War II broke out and Britain included India as a partner. The Congress demanded that, if Britain wanted Indian cooperation in the war, the right to self determination should be given. The demand was refused, but Britain later responded to the Congress’ requests. Before the movement began, the government arrested all the leaders and the Congress was declared illegal.

The movement saw participation from all walks of life – the middle class, students and educated youth. Attacks were launched against communication, police and military installations. Subhash Chandra Bose formed the Indian National Army in Singapore and called for a march to Delhi.

The British government took repressive measures to curb the Quit India movement and crowds were machine gunned and bombed from the air. People were arrested, publicly flogged and tortured. The entire Congress leadership was behind bars.

Bapu’s Ashram movement against Westernization:

Despite having a tough time preserving the sanctity of Mahat ma Gandhi’s Ashram, the trustees are still managing to do it. Recently the Ashram trust returned Rs 5 crore, sent by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh because it is against Bapu’s principles.
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The Ashram, which has played an important role in India’s struggle for independence, be the Satygarha of 1942 or Bharat Chodo Andolan (Quit India Movement), is in keeping with the tradition even 67 years down the line.
It has sent a bold message to the corridors of power. It wants the Prime Minister to give the money that was meant for them to the poverty-stricken farmers of Vidarbha.
“The PM didn’t declare it. But it was in his mind, and he did ask us if we needed any financial help. We told him to help the farmers instead. Our requirement is not the priority. It’s the farmers who need help,” says Secretary, Trustee, M B Nisal.
This move by the custodians of Sevagram shows how despite financial constraints they has decided to return the aid, as it is not in line with Bapu’s principle of self-reliance. Thereby trying their best to keep the age-old principles of the Mahatma alive even in the modern era.

Bhoodan movement against westernization:
In the history of India in the twentieth century the figure of M. Gandhi occupies a central position.. For Gandhi himself, however, these were only a part, to be sure essential, of a spiritual movement for the regeneration of a new India. As early as 1934 Gandhi had withdrawn from the Congress Party out of discontent with its leadership, which regarded nonviolence as no more than a political instrument and not as a fundamental philosophy of life, in order to devote himself to a constructive program of uplift for the Indian rural population. This program of sharing resources, education, rural industry, in particular weaving, and improvement of the position of the untouc hables stems from his philosophy of Sarvodaya (“uplift”).

His followers gathered in Sevagram in order to continue his work in the spirit of his philosophy of Sarvodaya. A loose federation of organizations was set up, known as the Sarvodaya Samaj (Sarvodaya Brotherhood.) In 1949 during the conference of Indore this loose federation was strengthened by the founding of the Akhil Bharat Sarva Seva Sangh (All India Association for the Service of All). In the Sarvodaya Movement after Gandhi’s death, Vinoba Bhave (1895-1982) occupied the most important position. Not only was he Gandhi’s most faithful follower, but also a charismatic leader in his own right with far-reaching influence. His achievements ranged from improving the organization of the Sarvodaya movement to his struggle for the legal prohibition of slaughtering cattle. His best known contribution, however, is the concept of Bhoodan (“gift of land”) and the movement it generated.
. Government plans for land reform lagged behind expectations. In the Telangana region civil war had broken out in 1950-1951, in which communists carried out armed seizures of land. In this area, in which conflicts between Hindu peasants and Muslim landowners also played a role, it has been estimated that 3,000 villages and one million hectares of land were sovietized. It was during a journey on foot through Telangana in 1951 that Bhave hit upon the idea of Bhoodan. He was able to convince a landlord to adopt him as son and grant him land on behalf of a group of landless peasants. From that moment on Bhoodan became a central tenet of Sarvodaya movement. Between 1951 and 1960 Bhave traveled 25,000 miles on foot, persuading 700,000 landowners to give up 8 million hectares. In the discussion of the time on the development of the Indian countryside, the strategy of the Bhoodan movement was criticized, especially in socialist nationalist circles, for producing fragmented land patterns that stood in the way of modernization and rationalization. In accordance with the spirit of Gandhi’s thinking,
however, Bhave took the position that land reform had to proceed from an individual change of mentality and not be imposed from above by government measures or other external pressures. This did not, as it turned out, prevent him from getting landowners to cooperate by pointing out the rising threat of the communists. Still, in order to allay the criticism by the socialists, among other reasons, Bhoodan was supplemented from 1952 on by the concept of Gramdan, which entailed granting land to whole villages to be worked collectively. In 1956 during the conference of Palni, Gramdan was even elevated to the central position. In 1964 India counted 6,807 Gramdan villages.
The British Raj

Mahatma Gandi with Foreign Guest during the Independence Movement
Mahatma Gandi with Foreign Guest during the Independence Movement

The 1857 revolt forced the British Crown to take over the administration of India. The Crown divided the country into three presidencies – Bengal, Madras and Bombay. British and East India Company interests were protected and preserved.

Britain’s policy of one-way free trade ruined Indian industries. India provided raw materials such as cotton and iron ore for production in British factories. Mass produced commodities made in Britain from these raw materials were then dumped back onto the Indian market at a lower price than locally produced merchandise, effectively undermining the local economy.

This was also the time of reform and cultural awakening. As educated Indians opened up to modern ideas, Raja Ram Mohan Roy and Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar initiated religious, social, educational and political developments. They worked actively towards improving the position of women and ridding Hinduism of irrational distortions and practices.

Spiritual leaders revived Hinduism and urged people to adopt the scientific attitude of the West.

The Congress movement against westernization (1885)
Few political initiatives against British rule had taken place on a national level. Initially, Indian intellectuals had thought that British rule would improve and transform the country. A series of famines between 1886 and 1901 and exploitative economic policies led the intellectuals to reshape their thinking. Discrimination between Indians and the British over jobs led to increasing resentment.

The British introduced the Ilbert Bill, which gave Indian magistrates the right to try Europeans. Europeans objected strongly and the bill was withdrawn.

The Vernacular Press Act, passed by Lord Lytton imposed severe restrictions on the Indian press, which was nationalistic. Nationalistic Indians began to organise themselves and held various meetings across India.

The Indian National Movement (1905) :
In 1905, Lord Curzon partitioned Bengal on the basis of it being huge and difficult to administer. His manner of partitioning the state raised eyebrows as it was divided along religious lines to create a rift between Hindu and Muslim politicians.

After about 15 years of petitioning the British government, the nationalists realised that they were not getting anywhere. They were working within the law and framework of British rule and found that their attempts to bring about change in this way were futile.

A new crop of leaders – Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilar and Bipin Chandra Pal – came up with the slogan of self-government (swaraj). They also realised the need to incorporate the masses into their movement and started using popular festivals like Ganesh Utsav (Lord Ganesh festival) to propagate t he concept of swaraj.

Bal gangadhar tilak was the first Indian nationalist to embrace Swaraj as the destiny of the nation. Tilak deeply opposed the British education system that ignored and defamed India’s culture, history and values. He resented the denial of freedom of expression for nationalists, and the lack of any voice or role for ordinary Indians in the affairs of their nation. For these reasons, he considered Swaraj as the natural and only solution. His popular sentence “Swaraj is my birthright, and I shall have it” became the source of inspiration for Indians

At the same time, the concept of swadeshi (indigenous) arose. Like swaraj, it became a movement and people began to boycott foreign products.

Revolutionary leaders began campaigns. After a few bomb blasts, assassinations and shoot outs in India and London, these movements died out.

Dairy cooperative movement against westernization:

Amul (Anand Milk-producers Union Limited), formed in 1946, is a dairy cooperative movement in India. It is a brand name managed by an apex cooperative organization, Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd. which today is jointly owned by some 2.6 million milk producers in Gujarat, India. It is based in Anand town of Gujarat and has been a sterling example of a co-operative organization’s success in the long term. The Amul Pattern has established itself as a uniquely appropriate model for rural development. Amul has spurred the White Revolution of India, which has made India the largest producer of milk and milk products in the world. It is also the world’s biggest vegetarian cheese brand [2].

Amul’s product range includes milk powders, milk, butter, ghee, cheese, curd, chocolate, ice cream, cream, shrikhand, paneer, gulab jamuns, basundi, Nutramul brand and others. In January 2006, Amul plans to launch India’s first sports drink Stamina, which will be competing with Coca Cola‘s PowerAde and PepsiCo‘s Gatorade.

Thus there were many reactions toward the westernization of British policy during the independence movement depending upon the education and level of people of society. And finally Indians were able to restore sovergnity in India.

Geography and its Types

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on February 18, 2009

(This text is the part of my Geography assignment during my 1st semester of Bachelor in Media Studies, Kathmandu University)

INTRODUCTION

DEFINITION

Fig showing the various related aspects, branches and visual description of geography

Fig showing the various related aspects, branches and visual description of geography

Geography comes from the Greek word “geographia” which   means earth description”. Traditionally it is defined as science that broadly deals with the structures and processes of the Earth’s physical and human environments and the interaction between the two, particularly in their spatial contexts. In today’s world geography no longer just mean only the description of the earth but also this involves explaining the processes operating below on and above the Earth’s surface an d the ways in which these process have created the landscapes around us and continue to change .In addition geography also clarifies why human structures and activities have developed in different ways in particular places. Geography is the detail and complex study of the natural and artificial process that are operating over the earth surface as well as inside the earth and space that operate over the earth over the time and again.

Geography is often called interdisciplinary because it draws on knowledge from other scientific disciplines: biology, sociology, meteorology, anthropology, psychology, and others.

Geography as an interdisciplinary subject

Geography as an interdisciplinary subject

Yet, the geographer’s focus is always spatial. Using models and theories; traditional tools, such as maps and field work; or by utilizing new technologies, including Global Positioning Systems, Geographic Information Systems, and remote sensing, geographers provide a unifying discipline with which students can better understand the world around them. Many geographers are applied practitioners, solving problems using a variety of tools, including computer-assisted cartography, statistical methods, remotely sensed imagery, the Global Positioning System (GPS), and geographic information systems. Geography is a synoptic science that uses the same elements as the other sciences but in a different context. It integrates data spatially, making elaborate use of maps as its special tool. Geography may be studied by way of several interrelated approaches, i.e., systematically, regionally, descriptively, and analytically


BRANCHES OF GEOGRAPHY

Modern geography has been divided conventionally into two main traditions: systematic and regional geography.

  1. Systematic geography: It is concerned with the formulation of general laws and principles and  is divided into two branches:

Physical geography and human geography

  1. Regional geography: It is concerned with the combination of physical and human -made features that characterize different region of the earth’s surface and that distinguish one form another.

(Note: In France and Germany regional concept of geography has maintained a rather stronger position, in part because of the different approach to the region in these countries)

Now we shall describe briefly about physical geography and human geography.

PHYSICAL GEOGRAHY: This branches of systematic geography is concerned with the physical environment, physical geography, encompasses a number of subjects areas with close links to other environmental discipline, notably geomorphology (study of evolution and configuration land reforms), climatology(study of  the long-term behavior of the atmosphere in specific areas), biogeography(study of the distributions of living and fossil species of plants and animals across the Earth’s surface as consequences of ecological and evolutionary processes), pedology(science that is concerned with the nature and arrangement of horizons in soil profiles; the physical constitution and chemical composition of soils; the occurrence of soils in relation to one another and to other elements of the environment such as climate, natural vegetation, topography, and rocks; and the modes of origin of soils. Pedology so defined does not include soil technology, which is concerned with uses of soils), hydrology (scientific study of the properties, distribution, and effects of water on the earth’s surface, in the soil and underlying rocks, and in the atmosphere).

(NOTE: let’s not be confused with various terminologies such as zoogeography, meteorology, paleontology, ecology, oceanography etc because they all are related physical geography)

HUMAN GEOGRAPHY: Human geography is a branch of geography that focuses on the study of patterns and processes that shape human interaction with the environment, with particular reference to the causes and consequences of the spatial distribution of human activity on the Earth’s surface. Geography is concentrated on the question “where”. Human geography, however, focuses on answering the “why” of “where”.

Human geography involves the study of people and their activities and structures, whether economic, social, cultural, or political. It also encompasses the ways in which people interact with the natural environment. At its simplest this involves the description, analysis, and mapping of where, for example, industries or towns are located, but human geographers’ concerns are generally far more complex than this. In particular, they seek to understand how and why human structures and activities have developed in particular ways in particular places. Like physical geography, human geography is divided into a number of specialized areas of research-economic, political, social, cultural, urban, and historical.

Focusing on scope of human geography, it encompasses human, political, cultural, social, and economic aspects of the social sciences. Human geography is methodologically diverse using both qualitative methods and quantitative methods, including case studies, survey research, statistical analysis, and model building among others.

Geographers have mentioned various discipline of human geography regarding the modern way of life and extreme demand with rapid development of technology and dependency of human society on electrical and mechanical devices. Some of them are listed below:

  1. Economic geography or developmental geography: the social science that deals with the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services and with the theory and management of economies or economic systems.

2.      Cultural geography: Cultural geography is a relatively new sub-field within human geography. A very simple and broad definition of Cultural       Geography is the study of geographical aspects of human culture. Its area of study is broad which include various specific terminologies such as

Globalization as the process, in which connections around the world increase and cultures become more alike. Globalization is an example of cultural convergence different cultures blending together

v     Westernization or the fast interference of foreign cultural features such  as dress up, festivals, living demands and other aspects of human dimension

v     Theories of Cultural hegemony or cultural assimilation via cultural imperialism.

v      Cultural aerial differentiation as a study of differences in way of life encompassing ideas, attitudes, languages, practices, institutions, and structures of power and whole range of cultural practices in geographical areas .

3.      Environmental geography: Environmental geography is the branch of geography that describes the spatial aspects of interactions between humans and the natural world. It requires an understanding of the dynamics of geology, meteorology, hydrology, biogeography, and geomorphology, as well as the ways in which human societies conceptualize the environment.

4.      Feminist geography: A geography which questions the patriarchal and hierarchical assumptions on which geography is based, and emphasizes the oppression of women and the gender inequality between men and women, especially as expressed in gendered space .It comprises the study the ways in which environmental perception and the representation of space vary with gender, and claim that the very language of geography is gendered and sexist..

5.      Historical geography: It is the study of the human, physical, fictional, theoretical, and “real” geographies of the past. Historical geography studies a wide variety of issues and topics. A common theme is the study of the geographies of the past and how a place or region changes through time. Many historical geographers study geographical patterns through time, including how people have interacted with their environment, and created the cultural landscape.

6.      Language geography: studies the geographic distribution of language or its constituent elements. There are two principal fields of study within the geography of language: the “geography of languages”, which deals with the distribution through history and space of languages, and “linguistic geography”, which deals with regional linguistic variations within languages.

7.      Religion geography: It is the study of the distribution of religions and how they got where they are, how they were created.

8.      Marketing geography: It is the study of where to put stores and retail chains to maximize exposure to the target audience.

9.      Political geography: The geography of states, federations, and sub state units. It is closely related to geopolitics, which is seen as the strategic, military and governmental application of political geographies.

In political geography we study how and why states are organized into regional grouping both formally and informally, the relationship between states and former colonies, the relationship between a government and its people, the functions and demarcation of boundaries.

10.              Population geography; It is the study of the ways in which spatial variations in the distribution, composition, migration, and growth of populations are related to the nature of places. Population geography involves demography in a geographical perspective. It focuses on the characteristics of population distributions that change in a spatial context. Examples can be shown through population density maps. A few types of

Maps that show the spatial layout of population are chloropleth, isoline, and dot maps. Demography studies:

v                 Study of people in their spatial distribution and density

v                 Increase or decrease in population numbers

v                 The movements and mobility of populations

v                 Occupational Structure

v                 Grouping of people in settlements

v                 The way from the geographical character of places e.g. settlement patterns

v                 The way in which places in turn react to population phenomena e.g. immigration and so on.

Note: The thinning of the ozone layer, the disposal of nuclear waste, homelessness, drug abuse, sea level rise and global warming, loss of biodiversity, the break-up of the Soviet Union, the break-up of the family. These are all critical problems facing the world today and none of them can be understood properly without an understanding of geography or geology

List of 122  different landscapes and geographic features present in the earth in alphabetical order

1)                  Alp, archipelago, arroyo, avalanche area etc

2)                  Badlands, bank, barrier, island, barrier, reef, basin, bay, bayou, beach, bluff bog, bowl, box, canyon, brook, brush, bush, butte etc

3)

Avalanche

caldera, canal, canyon ,cape, cave, cavern, channel, chasm ,chimney ,clearing ,cliff ,coast, coastal plain ,coastline continental ,shelf cove, crag, crater, creek ,crest, crevasse ,crevice etc

4)                  Dale, dell, delta, depression, desert, draw, drift, dune, everglade etc

5)                  Falls, field fissure, fjord, floating island, flood plain, foothills, ford, forest, fork, fountainhead, gap, geyser, glacier etc

6)                  Glade, glen, gorge, grassland, grotto, grove gulch, gulf, gully etc

7)                  Headland, headwaters, hedge, high seas, hill, hillside, hilltop etc

8)                  Hollow ice, cliff, ice face, ice field, iceberg, icefall, inlet, island, islets, isthmus etc

9)                  Jungle, knoll etc

10)              Lagoon, lake, ledge etc

11)              Mainland marsh meadow mesa mire moor moraine mound mountain mass mountain peak mountain range mountain slope mud

12)              Flat narrows neck oasis ocean orchard overhang overlook

13)              Pampas Park pass peak peninsula pike pinnacle pit plain plateau point pond pool prairie precipice promontory puddle

14)              Quicksand rain forest

15)              Range rapids ravine reef reservoir ridge rift rise river bed river mouth riverbank riverside rivulet

16)              salt lake sand bar sand dune sandbank sandbar scrub sea cliff seashore shallows shore shoreline sinkhole snow snowfield spring stand strait stream summit surf swamp

17)              Tableland tar pit thicket tidal basin tidal marsh tide pool timberland tower trench tributary tundra

18)              Underbrush

19)              Vale valley vista volcano

20)              Water hole waterfall waterfront waterspout wetlands whirlpool white water woodland woods.

Importance of studying of geography

The study of Geography encourages an understanding of physical and social processes in a variety of places and under varying environmental conditions. The concepts, skills, techniques and ways of thinking of the geographer enable students to understand the links between physical and social processes and the importance of place and space in creating major issues facing today’s society. Many of the problems associated with the physical environment require geological understanding, such as the disposal of radioactive waste, coastal protection and landslides. How are nuclear sites chosen, for example? Is the geological soundness a paramount factor or do local politics or the nature of the local economy play a part in the decision making process? Why are problems such as homelessness, drug abuse and single parenthood most acute in inner city areas – and why some cities more than others? Why will some low lying countries such as Bangladesh suffer more from global warming than equally low lying countries such as the Netherlands? These questions and many others simply cannot be answered without an understanding of geography.

Studying Geography and Geology prepares students for a wide range of careers in the private, public, academic and voluntary sectors. Geography is much more than precipitation cycles, podzolic soils, population pyramids and plate tectonics – it is the study of the relationships between the Earth’s landscapes, people, places and environments. In short, geography helps us to understand and explain the complex world we live in. The important role of geographical knowledge in understanding current local and global issues, such as climate change and world trade, is increasingly recognised by governments and businesses. Furthermore, the specific skills and expertise gained by geography graduates make them highly prized by employers.

OBJECTIVES:

Figs showing different people have different objectives on geography

Figs showing different people have different objectives on geography

After being acquainted with knowledge of geography we should be able to prepare written and verbal presentations that report their geographical discoveries through analyses of appropriate documents, primary data, and/or archival data. In technical styles we should prepare maps and other geographical graphics that report their discoveries through analyses of appropriate documents, primary data, and/or archival data.

Since the study of geography and geology relates so closely to real world issues, teaching and learning takes place not only in the classroom but also in “the field”. Fieldwork forms an important part of both degrees and takes place in a range of settings, from the local neighborhood, where students may monitor pollution levels or assess the degree of accessibility for disabled people, to volcanoes where geologists will study land deformation to try to predict future eruptions. All university courses incorporate field visits using sites in the British Isles and, in some cases, overseas. Working in the field not only develops appropriate skills and techniques but also enables students to work effectively in teams – just one more reason that Geography and Geology graduates are so employable. For instance climatology provide a comprehensive description of the Earth’s climate over the range of geographic scales, to understand its features in terms of fundamental physical principles, and to develop models of the Earth’s climate for sensitivity studies and for the prediction of future changes that may result from natural.

In addition, Geography and Geology courses provide access to a broad range of general careers, such as administration and management, the police and the armed forces, marketing and sales and, of course, teaching has always been a popular destination for geologist and geographer.

CONCLUSION:

Geography is a way of thinking, of asking questions, and of observing and appreciating the world around us. It gives us tools we need to move about in the world, to make wise decisions about our environment, and to relate more meaningfully to people from other lands and cultures. Geography was the biggest factor that controlled what you can ‘find’ and access. Even with the advent of faster, cheaper, easier communication methods, the tight coupling between serendipity and geography remained. Thus geography lies in the periphery of social science.

We should take geography as an academic and professional discipline offers important knowledge as well as analytical techniques which have application in solving important human problems.  We can explore spatial connectivity of human societies and environments at local, regional and global scales.

How the wolf got it’s grey coat ?

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on February 18, 2009

(This text is a part of my English assignment during my 1st semester of Bachelor in Media Studies, Kathmandu University)

wolf's grey coat.

wolf's grey coat.

At one point in time, all wolves were white. Every-single-one. There wasn’t another color. One wolf was named Tala (Native-American for wolf). Tala hated the color white and decided to be another color. She went to the nearby Native American village, hide in quietly, and stole a pot of red paint. When she found an open area, she dumped it on the ground to make a puddle. She rolled in the puddle until she was red all over. Then she went to the river to look at her reflection and see her knew color.

(more…)

Public Relation

Posted in assignment, Public Relation by Shekhar on February 17, 2009

(This text is fully academic or this topic is fully for my study purpose. All the readers may not need to study this text unles they are related in this discipline.  Primarily i will be regularly publishing this notes to help myself and my classmates and others related to this field. Thank you)

Edward Bernays was the self-appointed Father of Public Relations.

Edward Bernays was the self-appointed Father of Public Relations.

Date:2/18/2009

(Note from Internet Source)

Public Relation

Public relations (PR) is the practice of managing the flow of information between an organization and its publics.[1] Public relations – often referred to as PR – gains an organization or individual exposure to their audiences using topics of public interest and news items that do not require direct payment.[2] Because public relations places exposure in credible third-party outlets, it offers a third-party legitimacy that advertising does not have.[2] Common activities include speaking at conferences, working with the press, and employee communication.

PR can be used to build rapport with employees, customers, investors, voters, or the general public.[2] Almost any organization that has a stake in how it is portrayed in the public arena employs some level of public relations. A number of specialties exist within the field of public relations, such as Media Relations, Investor Relations or Labor Relations.

Definitions:

The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) claimed: “Public relations helps an organization and its publics adapt mutually to each other.”[3] According to the PRSA, the essential functions of public relations include research, planning, communications dialogue and evaluation.[4]

Edward Louis Bernays, who is considered the founding father of modern public relations along with Ivy Lee, in the early 1900s defined public relations as a management function which tabulates public attitudes, defines the policies, procedures and interests of an organization. . . followed by executing a program of action to earn public understanding and acceptance” (see history of public relations).

Today, “Public Relations is a set of management, supervisory, and technical functions that foster an organization’s ability to strategically listen to, appreciate, and respond to those persons whose mutually beneficial relationships with the organization are necessary if it is to achieve its missions and values.” [5] Essentially it is a management function that focuses on two-way communication and fostering of mutually beneficial relationships between an organization and its publics.

Building and managing relationships with those who influence an organization or individual’s important audiences has a central role in doing public relations

Public Opinion:

Public opinion is the aggregate of individual attitudes or beliefs held by the adult population. The principle approaches to the study of public opinion may be divided into 4 categories:

a) quantitative measurement of opinion distributions;

b) investigation of the internal relationships among the individual opinions that make up public opinion on an issue;

c) description or analysis of the public role of public opinion;

d) study both of the communication media that disseminate the ideas on which opinions are based and of the uses that propagandists and other manipulators make of these media.

Public opinion as a concept gained credence with the rise of ‘public’ in the eighteenth century. The English term ‘public opinion’ dates back to the eighteenth century and has derived from the French ‘l’opinion publique’, which was first used in 1588 by Montaigne. This concept came about through the process of urbanization and other political and social forces. For the first time, it became important what people thought, as forms of political contention changed.

Publics:

Publics are small groups of people who follow one or more particular issue very closely. They are well informed about the issue(s) and also have a very strong opinion on it/them. They tend to know more about politics than the average person, and, therefore, exert more influence, because these people care so deeply about their cause(s) that they donate much time and money. Therefore, it is unlikely for a politician to be reelected if he or she did not please the publics while in office.

History:

The history of public relations is mostly confined to the early half of the twentieth century; however there is evidence of the practices scattered through history. One notable practitioner was Georgiana Cavendish, ssssDuchess of Devonshire whose efforts on behalf of Charles James Fox in the 18th century included press relations, lobbying and, with her friends, celebrity campaigning [1].

A number of American precursors to public relations are found in the form of publicists who specialized in promoting circuses, theatrical performances, and other public spectacles. In the United States, where public relations has its origins, many early public relations practices were developed in support of railroads. In fact, many scholars believe that the first appearance of the term “public relations” appeared in the 1897 Year Book of Railway Literature.

Some historians regard Ivy Lee as the first real practitioner of public relations, but Edward Bernays, a nephew and student of Sigmund Freud, is generally regarded today as the profession’s founder. In the United Kingdom Sir Basil Clarke (1879 – 1947) was a pioneer of public relations.

The First World War helped stimulate the development of public relations as a profession. Many of the first PR professionals, including Ivy Lee, Edward Bernays, John W. Hill, and Carl Byoir, got their start with the Committee on Public Information (also known as the Creel Committee), which organized publicity on behalf of U.S. objectives during World War I.

In describing the origin of the term Public Relations, Bernays commented, “When I came back to the United States [from the war], I decided that if you could use propaganda for war, you could certainly use it for peace. And propaganda got to be a bad word because of the Germans … using it. So what I did was to try to find some other words, so we found the words Counsel on Public Relations”.

” पल्पसा क्याफे : एक भिन्न द्रिष्टिकोण

Posted in Audio gallery, नेपाली, book review by Shekhar on January 23, 2009

यो उपन्यासले पर्याप्त समीक्षा र प्रचार-प्रसारविना नै एक महिना�न्दा पनि छोटो समयमा हजारौँ पाठकको मनमाथी एकाधिकार रूपमा शासन चलायो
यो उपन्यासले पर्याप्त समीक्षा र प्रचार-प्रसारविना नै एक महिनाभन्दा पनि छोटो समयमा हजारौँ पाठकको मनमाथी एकाधिकार रूपमा शासन चलायो

(पढ्न समस्या छ भने यस उपन्यासको समीक्षा  शेखर के सीको स्वरमा सुन्नसक्नु हुन्छ  ) http://www.mypodcast.com/members/file-371201

(अथवा ईन्टरने स्पीडको समस्या छ भने आफ्नो कम्प्युटरमा सीधै Download गर्न सक्नुहुन्छ । )

नेपाली पुस्तक बजारमा पल्पसा क्याफे मात्र एउटा यस्तो उपन्यास हो जसले पर्याप्त समीक्षा र प्रचार-प्रसारविना नै एक महिनाभन्दा पनि छोटो समयमा हजारौँ पाठकको मनमाथी एकाधिकार रूपमा शासन चलायो ।

पल्पसा क्याफे प्रकासित हुनु भन्दा अगाडि एक आमपाठक वा समीक्षक भएर लेखक श्री नारायण वाग्लेले एक ठाउँमा यस्तो चिन्ता व्यक्त गरेका छन्- (more…)

Media, Culture and Society

Posted in assignment, Media, Media culture and Society by Shekhar on January 23, 2009

Introduction to Culture

[Collected and edited from Student’s notes]

Culture:

Culture is a way of living. It is something that connects us with the previous generation. It is a mirror of life. It is a set of values that gives someone a certain identity. It is a reflection of society in terms of norms, values, tradition and development. It is an invisible regulatory mechanism varying from one society to another, which has brought human civilization thus far. It guides our behavior and shapes our lifestyle.

Culture can be defined as all the ways of life including arts, beliefs and institutions of a population that is passed down from generation to generation. Culture has been called “the way of life for an entire society.” As such, it includes codes of manners, dress, language, religion, rituals, games, norms of behavior such as law and morality, and systems of belief as well as the art.

Culture is manifested in human artifacts and activities such as music, literature, lifestyle, food, painting and sculpture, theater and film. Although some scholars identify culture in terms of consumption and consumer goods (as in high culture, low culture, folk culture, or popular culture), anthropologists understand “culture” to refer not only to consumption goods, but to the general processes which produce such goods and give them meaning, and to the social relationships and practices in which such objects and processes become embedded. For them, culture thus includes art, science, as well as moral systems.

Characteristics:

  • Social but not individual
  • Idealistic
  • Total social heritage
  • An integrated system
  • Language as its chief vehicle
  • Transferred from old generation to new generation and has tendency to go further

Society:

It can be defined as a combination of several communities.

Community:

It can be defined as a group of people sharing the same language and ethnicity. It cannot be multi-cultural. It is an extended form of family.

Association:

It is an organization or union having certain objective, strategy, course of action and written rule. There is a body of people governing it and media is used by association to gain publicity.

Factors of social change:

  • Technology
  • Education
  • Media and communication
  • Information communication technology
  • Globalization
  • Politics
  • Mobility
  • Industrialization
  • Assimilation
  • Human nature

Additional [from different notes]

Culture refers to the behaviors and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group. This is possible only when it is passed from one generation to the other. Culture is an invisible regulatory mechanism varied from one society to another that has brought human civilization this far. Culture simply guides our lives and moulds in accordance with the environment that we live in, thus making it the mirror of our life. Culture sculpts the quality in a person or society that arises from a concern for what is regarded as excellent in arts, letters, manners, scholarly pursuits, etc. So in this regard, we can say culture is the way of living that determines our identity and makes our existence worthwhile.

Culture does not always necessarily mean the traditional culture. The traditional culture can be affected by the social changes; culture changes according to the changes in society which may be brought out by revolution, war, political changes and other factors as well thereby hybridizing the traditional one with many other cultures and increasing its complexity. Culture is not only the sum total of ways of living built up by a group of human beings and transmitted from one generation to another but also the behaviors and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group, for example; the youth culture, drug culture, jeans culture, and so on.

Society and Culture

Society is an emblem of sharing and multiplicity among a group of people that could belong to a community of multi ethnicity and multi culture. Culture, thus is the reflection of a society and norms, values and traditions that social beings follow.

Role of Media in defining and representing culture

Media Representation:

It refers to the combination of aspect of reality (people, events, places, cultural identity) in the media. The term refers to the processes involved as well as to its products. For instance, in relation to the key markers of identity – Class, Age, Gender and Ethnicity (the ‘cage’ of identity) – representation involves not only how identities are represented (or rather constructed) within the text but also how they are constructed in the processes of production and reception by people whose identities are also differentially marked in relation to such demographic factors. Consider, for instance, the issue of ‘the gaze’. How do men look at images of women, women at men, men at men and women at women?

Gaze theory:

The concept of gaze theory describes how men view women or how women view other women and how women view themselves. Marxists believe that female bodies are representation of commodity. There is a debate about the representation of women in media. Some view it as exploitation whereas others believe it to be independence.

Queer theory:

It explores the representation of homosexuals as well as sexual orientation. Queer theory’s main project is exploring the contestations of the categorization of gender and sexuality.

More reading

Media influence and culture are something that are very much intertwined and proportional to each other. Our situated culture exists within a much wider mediated world. Mass media are centrally involved in the production of contemporary culture. Media production, media inclusion and cultural response are like a series of interlinked paths. What is produced is influenced by cultural values; similarly, what are the cultural values also influences what is to be produced. For example, we have programs on TV like Dohori Karyakram, Krishi Samachar, Samay Baji, Nyalla Bya, Titto Satya, Madan Bahadur, Hari Bahadur, Ghumgham, Tirtha Yatra etc aired from different Nepali channels. In one way or the other, these programs are representing our culture. This is even bigger, when it comes to FM stations and Community radios in Nepal. Also, advertisements are playing their own part in defining our media and in a way it has also been the medium of representation for our culture like the Advertisements of Rumpum noodles, Mero Mobile etc. This is an example of how culture is represented in the media and the influence of culture on the media.

Besides, be it the culture of social networking or be it the culture of using i-pods, or be it the culture of following the style of Bollywood stars, media certainly has a larger hand in bringing these cultures to our life, through various mediums like TV, newspapers, magazines, Internet, Magazines etc. In this process, knowingly or unknowingly our culture is being modified or rather amended, thus defining it in a new way, something different than what our ancestors had perceived and followed. This is an example of how media is redefining our culture.

Media representation means the aspect of reality of people, of events, of culture and of environment in regard with CAGE ( Caste. Age. Gender. Ethnicity)

When it comes to impartial representation in media, we can find that media are mostly used by elites or people from higher class, to manifest that whatever they want people to know is what ever media shows, this is a conspiracy or propaganda. Besides, trans-genders, gays, lesbians and other sexually minor people’s issues are undermined by the media. This has caused not-so-impartial representation in the media. Mostly, who owns the media determines the liberality or democratic vision in the work and representation in the media. Media institutions like Jagaran media mainly focuses on Dalit people. This, in a way is step towards including the minors of society but then it is far from full representation of a wholesome society but just a group from it.

Media as a Cultural Institution

Marriage, festivals, guthis etc. are the cultural institutions. Media is cultural construct. It has existed for long time due to need of people. Pop culture, eating-out culture, beauty pageant culture, and wearing jeans are adapted from cultures. Culture is either inherited or derived. There is culture so there is media.

Grabbing publicity has also become a culture. When we market things also we need to consider culture. We need media because there are controversies and issues. Media will improve only if we have these issues. Unconsciously, media is seeping into our lives

Reading newspaper has become a part of culture. The time of news broadcasting is around 8. This is also due to culture.

Cross/ inter cultural considerations in media production

Media is one of the fastest growing industries. Over the years, media’s  influencing power has been felt like never before. Therefore, people seek space in the media. Demand for the democratization of everything has raised issues of inclusiveness in all walks of life. And, media is no exception. In this light, inclusiveness has become a boon for all those who seek their representation in media.

Addressing a wider audience in a single platform has become a challenge for media houses. While doing so, questions of financial sustainability are likely to arise. State media is compelled to make its productions inclusive because it has to reach people throughout the country. Unlike state media, private media are under no compulsion as such to make inclusiveness an issue in their productions. However, the rising cut throat competition among media houses has proved campaigning for inclusiveness not only relevant but also beneficial for them.

The question of democratization in media comes with the inclusiveness issue. Commercial media needn’t always be inclusive. But being inclusiveness has been a new source of revenue for the private media. Since a wider readership is likely to be gained through inclusive media content, the advertisers are willing to be a part of media houses promoting inclusiveness.

Additional reading

[This part is relatively weaker, but you can read it for additional points of reference.]

Cross-cultural consideration: This is a notion that all cultures are intertwined. We can also see merger of cultural characteristics. It is about adapting to both kind of culture. As for instance, we, Nepalese, celebrate Mahashivaratri, Christmas, Id, etc.

Intercultural consideration: We look at culture as individual units but functioning together and participating as different entities. In intercultural consideration, we give space to each culture. We learn cultures linking with each other.

Multicultural consideration: It refers to giving space for many cultures. It is about learning different cultures individually.

There is segregation between black and white, between male and female even in the US which is considered as a developed country. In case of mainstream media, even the private media sloganeer for inclusion, which is influencing the content of media but they cannot and do not represent all classes of people. Should the media include all kinds of people? Can we please everyone? Shouldn’t we go for competence rather than ethnicity? These are the questions that arise when we talk about the Quota system and inclusions but the answer is No. It is not possible to include each group in media. There should be this proportion of male and female, certain proportion of Dalits and janajatis.

TV channels want to reach a wider audience, so they can attract audience and they can attract advertisers. For this purpose of reaching a wider audience, they include matters of public interest of all kinds of people from all kinds of background. Hence, media has to be inclusive to reach wider audience for financial reasons. Also it is also done to keep the media platforms inclusive and democratic.

Buying newspaper and watching TV don’t mean viewing everything. We have certain things which we like to watch. So the mass media has to cater all kinds of programs to reach the audiences of different interest. However, media has to give consideration to these issues- Caste, Age, Gender, Ethnicity. But we consider media not for selfless, honest service but for earning fame, earning money. People desire to live freely, independently and have space in society. We have space when we have identity. So, everyone fights for getting their identity.

Media as an agent for socialization and acculturation

The boom in media industry has distorted our traditional way of socializing with people. Earlier there ware limitations of various sorts hindering the socialization process. Our social circle was limited. But now with increasing number of people having easy access to media, mainly internet, the face of socialization has changed forever. People have become accustomed to socializing in the virtual world. The rising number of social networking sites to the number of people searching for their soul mates in the virtual world proves how media is fast becoming an agent for socialization.

Media has grown to cover societies all over the world that we had no clue about. Being aware about the presence of societies with cultures so different than ours has become possible due to media. Foreign culture no longer seems foreign because of our constant exposure to it through media. We’ve now grown as accustomed to foreign cultures and have incorporated in our own lives. Celebrating Valentine’s Day, Christmas, organizing masquerade parties are all the results of acculturation that has been brought about by media.

Additional

1.

Media has become basic need for us. We know world through media and on relating to those we interact with others. We transport our knowledge and share ideas. We talk about the incidents happening around the globe, about our favorite celebrities and programs. Internet creates a community. Through internet we meet new people. Hence, in all these, media is the mediator that brings topics for communication which helps us in socializing with people.

Every society is influenced more or less by others. We learn about different people and their cultural backgrounds through media and hence it helps us not to become alien with those cultures. We learn to accept those cultures and apply those in our everyday practices. Speaking in English language, wearing western dresses etc. are examples of acculturation.

2.

Somewhere around the age of two or three, children in our society first encounter the media as an agent of socialization in the form of TV. Socialization comes through from children’s shows, cartoons, and, most especially, commercials. Socialization comes through the characters, images, words, and narrative story lines. Some media specifically act to be agents of socialization but most only strive to be entertainment sources.

Media influence continues and strengthens in adolescence based on a merger of teen subculture, pop culture (music & movies), and corporate marketing. Sports, increasingly a branch of marketing, become especially influential for teenage boys. The internet (web pages, e-mail, chat rooms) have emerged as another media socialization source for people. Besides, more and more people are flooding to online socialization sites through internet. Social networking sites like facebook, hi5, MySpace, Orkut etc have evolved to provide services beyond just frivolous interaction and entertainment. People have started to become busy in these online sites more than just being out socially in real, through the cables and wires and few other technological devices. Apart from making friends, uploading pictures and videos related to campus, groups, discussing campus events, these sites, like Orkut and Facebook or even Blog sites, have even helped a lot with one’s career.

But with this, little of privacy and a narcissistic fascination of self-display       might just bring the identity crisis among people

1.      Acculturation: It is the adoption of the culture of one group by another group. It is a one way process where the dominant group has no effect in its culture.

2.      Enculturation: It simply means the assimilation of two or more cultures.

Further readings

Socialization

Source: [http://www.gossamer-wings.com/soc/Notes/zation1tv/tsld001.htm]

Socialization is: THE LIFELONG SOCIAL EXPERIENCE BY WHICH INDIVIDUALS DEVELOP THEIR HUMAN POTENTIAL AND LEARN PATTERNS OF THEIR CULTURE.

Importance of socialization

  • Essential for individual survival: lifelong process
  • Essential for a society’s survival
  • transmission of values, norms, culture
  • Nature vs. Nurture: certain traits are developed through upbringing and exposure.

Notes:

Biosociology maintains that human behavior in primarily the result of genetic influences and physiology. For example, male aggression has been linked to higher levels of the hormone testosterone. Therefore, biosociologists would say that males are inherently more aggressive than females and that this is a positive trait from an evolutionary standpoint because the more aggressive males would have been most likely to survive and acquire mates thus passing their aggressive genes along to their descendents. I suppose the gentle males all got wiped out….

Well that’s the nature viewpoint in a nutshell- the nurture viewpoint would not deny the impact of biology on behavior but proposes that human behavior is much more complex than can be explained by raging hormones and that the influence of socialization far out weighs the impact of biology. Males may have testosterone, but they learn to be aggressive and they can also learn to be compassionate.

Humans are social primates. You have read about Harlow’s experiments with monkeys and about the effects of social isolation on children. The socialization process transmits society’s values, norms, and culture to the young. Without this society itself would cease to exist.

Nurture: Socialization is needed and occurs because humans:

  • have no instincts and so must learn everything
  • have a long period of infant dependency
  • have a need for social contact
  • have the ability to learn and

    the capacity for language

Notes: To repeat: Most social scientists agree that, while biology does influence some portions of our personalities, human beings have no instincts. The newborns are incapable of caring for themselves. In the case of humans this dependency lasts up to 20 years (socially anyhow), perhaps longer. Sociologists therefore maintain that the self we develop is a result mainly of our social circumstances. However, it is a part of being human, being a primate, to nurture. Therefore, the nurture side is not entirely devoid of nature.

Agents of Socialization

Family:

Provides: social position, emotional support, physical support, role models

Notes:

What is a primary group? What is a secondary group? In which of these do we spend most of our adult lives? The period from infancy to about five years is the most important time in our lives for socialization. We learn more during this time span than during the entire rest of our lives. We start out at birth knowing nothing. By the time we are 5 we can speak, write (some), count, tie our shoes, walk. . . .

We learn values as well during this time. The family serves to place us in the stratification system of society. It gives us a social class position at birth.

Mass Media & Socialization

Types of mass media: movies, television, print- magazines and newspapers, books, etc. music; electronic communications

Notes: The American Academy of Pediatrics notes that children as young as 2 are spending, on average, 16 to 17 hours in front of the television every week; children, on average, view about 10,000 violent acts on television each year. The Academy has further recommended that children under the age of 2 watch no television.

Mass Media Functions to socialize:

  • Mass Media Functions to socialize:

Provides:  information; contact with others; viewpoints on issues; access to consumer culture; entertainment; education?

  • Positive and negative aspects

Notes:

While we are accustomed to complaints that children (or adults) watch too much television, a new mass media problem has emerged since 1994- Internet Addiction. The American Psychiatric Association has recognized Internet Addiction Disorder. Some indications include:

1. Tolerance- needing more time online to achieve satisfaction.

2. Withdrawal symptoms that develop within a few days to a month after reducing or stopping use. The resumption of use decreases the symptoms.

3. Use of the Internet more often for longer periods of time. And spending time on        Internet related activities (reading books, trying out software, etc.)

4. Neglect of other important life activities.

5. Excessive use impacts negatively on job, relationship, or other role obligations.

Some research has indicated that middle aged women and people already prone to depression and bipolar disorders are most likely to develop this disorder. The subject has been studied by psychologists.

Resocialization: Process of learning new and different norms and values. Can be voluntary- enter a new status on our own through marriage, military service and job.

Notes:

Socialization is a lifelong process. Adult socialization often includes learning new and sometimes very different norms and values from those in which the person was raised. This process can be voluntary. Currently, joining the military qualifies as an example. The norms and values associated with military life are different, in some cases very different, from those in civilian life.

Resocialization into a total institution involves a complete change of personality.

Sociologist Erving Goffman studied resocialization in mental institutions. He characterized the mental institution as a total institution- one in which the entire scope of the inmates’ lives was controlled by the institution to serve the institution’s goals. For example, the institution requires that patients comply with regulations, even when compliance is not necessarily in the best interests of an individual.

Media as cultural artifact

With changing times, media has evolved as cultural artifact. Media has become a part of our everyday experience. It has become a culture primarily because media has begun taking some space (although not physical) in our lives.

Cultural artifacts reflect our everyday life and media does the same. We have increasingly become more dependent on media. We are guided by media and people can relate to the media contents. Newspapers, radios, televisions, internet and mobile technologies have become an integral part of our life. For instance, radio dramas are cultural artifacts because they are representational and participatory.

Additional

Cultural artifacts are some symbols of culture like Doko, nanglo – these aren’t just instruments. They denote a lifestyle. When something becomes part of everyday experience and when it is reflected in our attitude and behavior; when something becomes a part of us and our living, it becomes a cultural artifact.

For anything to be labeled a cultural artifact, we have to consider how widespread it is.

Even if something is disappearing, like pagers, it will still be considered a cultural artifact as it denotes the culture of a certain time-frame in history. This is to say, culture is not just something from today. It is something from the past as well. Not everything becomes culture. It becomes culture when it becomes a part of your life which invades your life. A flash drive which only stores documents isn’t a cultural artifact because not everyone can use it. But a music player is.

Media as a whole becomes a culture because we are guided by it (learning, exposure, information); we are dependent on it. It represents who we are. It creates our identity; our experiences are also represented in it. Cellphone is not just a device; it is a part of living, of experience. The things that become part of living becomes culture in the course of time

When it is reflected in our everyday experience, it becomes cultural artifact. We love it, we preserve it.

Media, education and awareness

This is to discuss how development of (mass) media technologies has helped promotion of education in the world.

Radio: educational program — formal on language training, tutorial programs run by   community radios in Nepal, distance education programs by Radio Nepal

Non-formal on agriculture, health and environment

Print: books, journals, magazines and newspapers

Print as source of education

Formal education and training through newspapers

The Internet Boom:

Proliferation of educational sites; promotion of educational institutions, globalisation of education systems; digital archives and libraries; distance education

Media used in distance learning:

  • Technologies, telephone, videoconferencing’ web-conferencing;
  • Audio cassettes, emails, message boards, social networking, print materials, faxes, video-cassettes, voice

Media Controversies

The concept media controversies encompasses diverse issues accompanying media’s role in the society. The issues can be the ones that different media platforms try to cover and represent or the ones that emanate from media’s own role. In other words, the controversies are the issues media deal with and those that the media audience and users experience as the consequences of good or bad representations.

Some pertinent controversies in media are:

  • Political/ ideological biases: often seen in connection with political parties owning and controlling media houses; makes the concept of independence arbitrary very often.
  • Censorship of contents: seen in the autocratic government system
  • Manipulation of media by power groups: the criticism that certain powerful groups control and mould the functions of media institutions
  • Freedom of expression: right to information as the fundamental human right. Is it always so? What is the limitation of exercising such right. The collision between the concept of freedom, journalistic ethics and state laws on media regulations
  • Transparency: the issues dealing with the scope and limitation of the rights to access public information. To what extent should public information be transparent to the general people? Doesn’t it violate individuals’ right for privacy?
  • Yellow journalism: ethical issues involving bad journalism. But what are the standards for measuring the goodness or badness of media practices.

More issues [http://faculty.deanza.edu/grobmanbeth/stories/storyReader$849?print-friendly=true 14 November 2008]. Note that the issues are related to US media.

1.      Are American values shaped by the mass media?

2.      Are freebies (gifts) given to journalists the same as bribes?

3.      Are news agencies that use press releases and video news releases without attribution guilty of unethical behavior?

4.      Are newspapers insensitive to minorities?

5.      Are people better informed in the information society?

6.      Are the dangers of concentration within media monopolies overstated?

7.      Are V-chips and content ratings necessary?

8.      Can privacy be protected in the information age?

9.      Can the music industry survive despite technologies that facilitate downloading?

10. Do advertisers unduly influence news and program?

11. Do African American (Asian/Latino/Middle Eastern, etc.) stereotypes still dominate entertainment television?

12. Do magazines compromise their editorial integrity in their push to obtain advertisers and celebrity news?

13. Do media drive foreign policy?

14. Do media technologies increase citizen participation?

15. Do new media have an immediate effect on our behaviors and attitudes?

16. Do paparazzi (freelance photographers) threaten privacy and First Amendment rights?

17. Do public relations practitioners provide a valuable service to the public?

18. Do ratings work?

19. Do some men’s magazines promote sexual stereotypes?

20. Do television programs stereotype women?

21. Do the mass media undermine openness and accountability in democracy?

22. Do the media have a liberal (conservative) bias?

23. Do the media introduce us to new ways of thinking about things?

24. Do very thin “heroin chic” fashion models encourage eating disorders and/or drug use?

25. Do women’s, men’s and teen magazines promote unattainable body shapes?

26. Does concentration of ownership limit the diversity of voices in the newspaper industry?

27. Does electronic media enhance political knowledge?

28. Does media coverage of criminal trials undermine the legal process?

29. Does media violence cause more violence in society or merely reflects that society is violent?

30. Does the “blockbuster syndrome,” — the publishing industry’s obsession with books that will have sales in the millions — freeze out young talent?

31. Does the globalization of media industries homogenize media content?

32. Does the Internet have the power to transform culture?

33. Does the low number of women and minorities in the newsroom affect the way in which news is covered and presented?

34. Has coverage of political campaigns improved?

35. Has democracy been transformed by new uses of media?

36. Is advertising ethical?

37. Is censorship always wrong because it curtails freedom of expression?

38. Is economics the bottom line in the newsrooms of today?

39. Is emphasis on body image in the media harmful only to females?

40. Is enough being done to regulate deceptive advertising?

41. Is Internet addiction a social problem?

42. Is it wrong to present the news in an entertaining way, distorting the information it conveys?

43. Is local television news unnecessarily superficial?

44. Is negative campaigning bad for the American political process?

45. Is television harmful for children?

46. Is there a conflict of rights between a free press and the rights of a defendant for a fair trial?

47. Is there scientific proof (in addition to anecdotal evidence) that movie violence has caused real-life violence?

48. Should advertising be regulated during children’s programming?

49. Should books sometimes be censored or banned by government or quasi-governmental organizations such as schools and libraries?

50. Should children be protected from Internet pornography?

51. Should freedom of speech ever be restricted?

52. Should Internet access be regulated?

53. Should news reporters vote or belong to political parties, or is that a conflict of interest?

54. Should public relations professionals be attributable to a government agency?

55. Should radio content ever be censored?

56. Should shock (or hate) radio be legal?

57. Should smoking in movies be eliminated or at least made to look unglamorous, since health experts believe it leads to increase smoking among young people?

58. Should songs with explicit lyrics be banned from radio and television?

59. Should television networks be required to show a certain amount of educational programs for children?

60. Should the names of rape victims be reported?

61. Should violence on television be allowed?

62. Will technology change social interaction?

Digital divide and new social order

[This part is from the collection of Amol Acharya. He needs to acknowledge the source.]

The term digital divide refers to the gap between those people with effective access to digital and information technology and those without. It includes the imbalances in physical access to technology as well as the imbalances in resources and skills needed to effectively participate as a digital citizen. In other words, it’s the unequal access by some members of the society to information and communications technology, and the unequal acquisition of related skills. Groups often discussed in the context of a digital divide include gender, income, race and location. The term global digital divide refers to differences in technology access between countries.

Origins of the term:

The term initially referred to gaps in ownership of computers between groups, during which time the increase of ownership was limited to certain ethnic groups. The term came into regular usage in the mid-1990s, though the term had previously appeared in several news articles and political speeches as early as 1995. President of the United States Bill Clinton and his Vice President Al Gore used the term in a 1996 speech in Knoxville, Tennessee. Larry Irving, a former United States head of the National Telecommunications Infrastructure Administration (NTIA) at the Department of Commerce, Assistant Secretary of Commerce and technology adviser to the Clinton Administration, noted that a series of NTIA surveys; were “catalysts for the popularity, ubiquity, and redefinition” of the term, and he used the term in a series of later reports. Since the start of the George W. Bush Administration, the NTIA reports have tended to focus less on gaps and divides and more on the steady growth of broadband access, especially amongst groups formerly believed to be on the wrong side of the digital divide.

It should be noted that there is a considerable literature on information and digital inequality that predates this current label. The concept of a digital divide is more of a new label and less of a unique concept.

Current usage:

There are various definitions of the term “digital divide”. Bharat Mehra defines it simply as “the troubling gap between those who use computers and the internet and those who do not”. The term initially referred to gaps in the ownership of, or regular access to, a computer. As Internet access came to be seen as a central aspect of computing, the term’s usage shifted to encompass gaps in not just computers but also access to the Internet. Recently, some have used the term to refer to gaps in broadband network access. The term can mean not only unequal access to computer hardware, but also inequalities between groups of people in the ability to use information technology fully.

Due to the range of criteria which can be used to assess the imbalance, and the lack of detailed data on some aspects of technology usage, the exact nature of the digital divide is both contextual and debatable. Criteria often used to distinguish between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’ of the digital divide tend to focus on access to hardware, access to the internet, and details relating to both categories. Some scholars fear that these discussions might be discouraging the creation of Internet content that addresses the needs of minority groups that make up the “have nots,” as they are portrayed to be techno phobic charity cases that lack the desire to adopt new technologies on their own.

The discussions on digital divide often are tied with other concepts. Lisa Servon argued in 2002 that the digital divide “is a symptom of a larger and more complex problem — the problem of persistent poverty and inequality”. As described by Mehra (2004), the four major components that contribute to digital divide are “socioeconomic status, with income, educational level, and race among other factors associated with technological attainment”.

Recognition of digital divide as an immense problem has led scholars, policy makers, and the public to understand the “potential of the internet to improve everyday life for those on the margins of society and to achieve greater social equity and empowerment”.

Digital divide evolution:

Typical measurements of inequality distribution used to describe the Digital Divide are the Lorenz Curve and Gini coefficient, however, the question of whether or not the digital divide is growing or closing is difficult to answer.

In bridging the digital divide:

An opportunity for growth for the 21st century, examples of these ways of measuring is illustrated. In the Lorenz curve, perfect equality of internet usage across nations is represented by a 45-degree diagonal line, which has a Gini coefficient of zero. Perfect inequality gives a Gini coefficient of one. Therefore if you look at figures 2.4 and 2.5 in the document, both graphs show a trend of growing equality from 1997 to 2005 with the Gini coefficient decreasing. However, these graphs don’t show the important, detailed analysis of specific income groups. The progress represented is predominantly of the middle-income groups when compared to the highest income groups. The lowest income groups continue to decrease their level of equality in comparison to the high income groups. Therefore, there is still a long way to go before the digital divide will be eliminated.

Digital divide and education:

One area of significant focus was school computer access; in the 1990s, rich schools were much more likely to provide their students with regular computer access. In the late 1990s, rich schools were much more likely to have internet access. In the context of schools, which have consistently been involved in the discussion of the divide, current formulations of the divide focus more on how (and whether) computers are used by students, and less on whether there are computers or internet connections.

The E-Rate program (officially the Schools and Libraries Program of the Universal Service Fund), authorized in 1996 and implemented in 1997, directly addressed the technology gap between rich and poor schools by allocating money from telecommunications taxes to poor schools without technology resources. Though the program faced criticism and controversy in its methods of disbursement, E-Rate has been credited with increasing the overall number of public classrooms with Internet access from 14% in 1996 to 95% in 2005. Recently, discussions of a digital divide in school access have broadened to include technology related skills and training in addition to basic access to computers and internet access.

Technology offers a unique opportunity to extend learning support beyond the classroom, something that has been difficult to do until now. “The variety of functions that the internet can serve for the individual user makes it “unprecedentedly malleable” to the

(This whole article was uploaded on the consent of our subject teacher Assistant Professor Hemraj Kafle (Blog 1, blog 2 blog 3 ) and our Media Students)

“The Pakistani Spectator, Ghazala took Interview of Shekhar”

Posted in Blogging, Media, My life by Shekhar on January 23, 2009

Ghazala Khan, The Pakistani Spectator took interview of  Shekhar KC on 23rd Jan, 2009.

The Pakistani Spectator takes interview of the bloggers from different corner of the world

The Pakistani Spectator takes interview of the bloggers from different corner of the world

Ghazala Khan :Would you please tell us something about you and your site?

Shekhar KC: Well, I am one of the few but the most fortunate citizen of my Country Nepal. You can see, Blogging is very far, normal citizen don’t even know about the internet. I first time hit the key stroke of Keyboard just 3 years ago. So after browsing through different site, I finally knew about blogging.
My blog http://visitskc.wordpress is just about myself and my discipline. It’s main motive is sharing and that’s all. I have no intention to make money or be famous.

Shekhar giving online interview to Ghazala Khan

Shekhar giving online interview to Ghazala Khan

Ghazala Khan :Do you feel that you continue to grow in your writing the longer you write? Why is that important to you?

Shekhar KC: Yeah, I realized that when I continue to write in blog as part of my daily routine. It’s importance  is rather (more…)

Negotiating Identity in the internet: A Social world of Facebook

Posted in assignment, KU Issues, Media by Shekhar on January 22, 2009

( This article was contributed by Sumati Maharjan and Asmita Manandhar)

As we human beings are the only social beings, the way we live and behave in our society defines us and our identity. Social processes and traditional understandings have been defining our life from the very beginning. Society is an emblem of sharing and multiplicity among a group of people that could belong to a community of multi ethnicity and multi culture. But, with the advancement in science, technology and relevant communication behavior, we have come a long way, where we socialize with the entire world even through a confined room- thanks to the ever escalating obsession and use of social networking sites. Or we can say, more than an obsession, it has become a necessity, which unlike our traditional societies, has started to revamp the meaning of socialization (more…)

Radio: Most influential Media in Nepal

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on January 17, 2009

(This article was contributed by  Asmita Manandhar)

History of Nepali Mass media

The history of development of modern mass media in Nepal is not that old but the traditional means of mass Media in Nepal started since the period of Prithivi Narayan Shah which are classified into traditional means of mass media. Modern forms of mass media begun in Nepal when Janga Bahadur Rana, the then Rana Prime minister brought a printing press while returning from his England trip which was named ‘Giddhe Chapakhana’. Though there were other magazines and newspapers published in Nepali language, the publication of ‘Gorkhapatra’ in 1901 A.D. proved to be a milestone for modern Nepali mass media. The publication of Gorkhapatra is also significant because it took the form of organization and hence published other newspapers and magazines under ‘The Gorkhapatra Organization’. The first radio in Nepal was ‘Prajatantra Radio’ which was established by then revolutionary forces in (more…)

Most Influencial Media Outlet In Nepal

Posted in assignment, Media, Media culture and Society by Shekhar on January 16, 2009

(This article is contributed by Alina Shakya)

Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel

The world today is increasingly driven by a combination of information and entertainment values and these are both promoted by the explosion of different means of communication such as satellite T.V and internet communication. This means the market for information is extremely competitive. The Nepalese mass media sector is highly political and commercial, with few personal dimension. Nepalese media is a combination of two very different extremes: tightly controlled National institutions that mainly reflect the official views (the state owned media) and free-market and entertainment-based private media channels that reflect a combination of state and private views.

Television, radio & newspapers were the main forms of media respondents cited when they were asked to list types of media they were aware of, followed by newspapers and Internet/ Email. There were also a few who included postal services in the list. However, incidence of those mentioning postal services as a form of media was very low in the rural areas & vice versa when it came to Internet.

The modern history of mass communication in Nepal starts after bringing a printing press in 1851 AD (1908 BS) from Britain.Gorkhapatra is considered as the country’s eldest newspaper published on 24th Baishakh 1958 BS. The publication of Gorkhapatra is considered as the beginning of newspaper publication in Nepal. Nepal Television started its transmission since 2042 B.S however Nepal T.V act was approved in 2041 B.S. On 20th of Chaitra, 2007 B.S Radio Nepal was formally established. But all these three mediums of mass communication were under ownership of the state. It took decades for the private sector to come forward and compete with these state owned media and influence the people of Nepal and their society.

According to famous Nepali journalist Shiva Regmi the radio sets started to enter in Nepal since the decade to 1980B.S .But the radio broadcasting started from 2003 B.S. Radio Nepal started its short wave transmission in 2007 B.S with the help of 250W transmitter.At that time Radio Nepal has programme of 4 hours and 30 minutes. Now the Radio Nepal is transmitting its programme more than 17 hours each day.It is government controlled media of Nepal. It started its FM transmission in 2052 B.S Kartik 13, in Kathmandu. Nepal Government started to provide license for private radio stations through FM transmission since 2052 B.S. The development of Broadcasting system started with the innovation of wireless Transmission system .The Italian Gugli Marconi demonstrated first wireless System in 1895 A.D, transmitting message through the air by electronic impulses. Radio stations speaks mainly two voices A.M and F.M. A.M means Amplitude Modulation and F.M means Frequency Modulation.

Radio Nepal is the national broadcaster with maximum geographic coverage and highest audience listenership in NepaL. Radio Nepal runs its transmission in Short Wave (SW), Medium Wave (MW) and Frequency Modulation (FM) frequencies from the different locations in Nepal. In Nepal, Kathmandu valley is the most crowded place in terms of FM radio frequencies ranging from 87.6 MHz to 107.4 MHz. As on March 1, 2008 the audible radio stations at the Kathmandu valley is +29. Analog tuning has now become more difficult with more frequencies on pipeline and new radio stations operating around the valley.

Facts and Figures

• The Broadcast Audience Survey (BAS 2006-2007) shows that 65% of the country is covered by one of more of the FM radio signals for comfortable tuning to the radio frequencies. This percentage increases to 75% when calculated for the lowest signal level that can be received by a highly sensitive radio set.

• Housewives and shop owners are the most radio listening group in the country (32% each) while students (13%) are found to be the next most listening group in the country.

• Radio is available and accessible in 82% of Nepalese household while 59% of household has television, telephone 30%, newspaper 13%, magazines 5% and internet 1%.

• 76% of radio sets owned have both AM and FM tuners while around 7% of radio sets are only tunable to AM bands such as Medium Wave and Short wave. • 56% of radio sets owned in the country are Chinese brands, while 37% of radio sets are Indian and 2.7% Japanese. 1.8 percent of radio sets are from rest of the countries.


• Radio is the most preferred source of information and entertainment with 64%, followed by television – 35%, newspapers 0.8% and internet 0.1%. • FM radio is the most preferred (84.7%) frequency band among the radio bands, followed by Medium Wave (MW – 44.6%) and Short Wave (SW – 16.5%).

• The peak radio listening time is 6:00am – 8:00am in the morning and 6:00pm -10:00pm in the evening. It can be easily assumed that a greater part of Nepalese population owns a radio set. This was also evident from the statistics of the survey data which shows that though some of the rural respondents did own a television, a majority owned only a radio. This is because much of the rural Nepal is devoid of electricity and proper transportation services. This has been greatly challenged the television and print media for reaching out to the public. The low literacy rate and poor communications infrastructure are also the reasons for little recognition of

newspapers and the internet. In most of the electrified rural areas – terrestrial signals of Nepal Television is the only one that can be received. In many or the rural areas, respondents stated that they have to visit the district headquarters or nearby townships to read newspapers or the magazines. In other regions, the newspaper would reach in a week at its earliest. However, situation was comparatively better in the rural areas of the Tarai, where people had higher level of access to television as well as daily newspapers. There were very few respondents who mentioned having telephone lines in their household. There were some VDCs (close to the headquarters) where a number of villagers owned a mobile phone. This was quite evident in Palpa district where a majority of the household in MadanPokhara VDC had at least one mobile phone. When the respondent were asked to mention only one media as the most preferred source of information and/or entertainment, radio was found to be the winner among others. The figures for radio (64.1%) is almost double than that of the television (35 %). While the figures for magazines was negligible, newspaper was the most preferred source of information for some of the respondent, most of which were from the urban population. Internet was preferred media for only a small percentage of urban population. When asked the reasons behind their choice of media, easy accessibility and low operating costs were key considerations, followed by the variety of channels and content. The urban population favored the choices and selection of the content in both the radio and television. Most of the respondents wanted to hear more about the local issues in their radio and this figure was higher (37.2%) for the urban population than the rural (25.7%). The cost issue was not a big deal for some urban population while this was the major reason for many of the rural respondents.

From the data analysis, it is seen that radio is mostly used for news and music, but this was not the primary reason for preferring radio to other forms of media. Surprisingly, news and music were the least reasons for preferring the radio.

Places and Identity

Posted in assignment, Media, Media culture and Society by Shekhar on January 16, 2009

( This article was contributed by Nashiv Kafle )

When you are to define yourself what will be the perfect way of defining yourself. Telling your full name will be enough or more than that. As regarding this topic the definition of you must be both in the physical way and symbolic way. Physical way as defining yourself with your name and the symbolic as defining you along with your place of living, education, jobs, and more. To be more clearly physical definition is the direct or general definition and the symbolic definition is the vast and deep definition of you. The same thing is implied in the defining of the certain place. Not actually by only its name but  through the whole elements which the place consists of.

The collage of media and culture plays an important role in the places and identity. This modern era media has not left any sector without its connection. Suppose we have a particular place with its typical cultural identification. The present day media has come up with the new practice in which the media cope up with the culture and the outcome of that will be the expansion of that place into today’s globalized world. The wide audiences are being gathered by the media in terms of focusing the particular place with its particular identity. Nepal as being a nation of Mt. Everest is one of the most prominent identification of the nation. Likewise the nation of Pashupatinath which we all know is a sacred place for the Hindu devotee. A very general example is that of the Malekhu which a famous place for the fish is. The fish of the Malekhu plays an identification of that place. We know Manakamana Temple very well and most of all have been there for times. Manakamana Temple is famous for itself but what I believe has been is that rather going for the sole purpose of Darshan people enjoy going there for the cable car. The whole identity of the place has been somewhat changed by the only cable car of the nation present there.

When there is a topic of coping up the Media and Culture and defining them in the close relation of places and identity then we have to pick up the typical identity of the place and show how it has been identified very differently via the Media. From the places like Ghale Gaun of Lamjung to the Bhaktapur Durbar Square the places have come up with a very different identification to the promotion of the very place itself. The modern generation of the place has worked out in promoting the place in a new and unique way. In the era of the last 10 years the places have changed and come up mostly with a lot of positive changes. People have been seriously aware of conserving heritage and maintain costly identification of the place. We live in a 3rd world and yet we can be the independent nation through our rich cultural and natural identification best and unique in itself.

I have come up with the brief detail of the place where I live and the changes come up so far during this recent time.

Chovar

Chovar is a small town located at the top of the hill about 8 KM southwest of Kathmandu. This quiet town is famous for its people working on ancient loom, Tribhuvan University located at the foothill, nature rich area and some old temples. Legend has it that Manjushree cutout the gorge to drain out Kathmandu valley was then a lake. There is a small but picturesque temple of Adinath on the top of a hill. From this top one can have a completed view of snowcapped mountains peaks and whole Kathmandu Valley.

The village can be divided into two parts, top and middle. At the top the Newar communities is situated and at the middle Brahmin and Chetrris are mostly receded. There are other minority of the caste as well. The major castes are Newar, Brahmin and Chetrii. In span of these 10 years the whole perspectives of the local people have drastically changed. Before Chovar was just a place where people would come during Mela of Adinath Temple but now the place is slowly changing into the weekend destiny for local tourist place. Local people are more involved in doing hotel businesses and it is being worked very well. This is the fine example of the places and its identity. The identification of the place has changed from the place of Adinath temple to one of the good option for touring. There has been the 14th cycling tournament Asia in chovar recently which also brought a lot of media attention to the place.

It was due to media that not only this time but from very beginning people have changed their perspective about Chovar. Therefore, Media plays a vital role in giving the identity of the Places.

Ipod and Mp3: Isolation or Emancipation

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on January 16, 2009

( This article was contributed by Gaurav Devkota and Shail Shrestha)

Executive Summary

Our goal for this research project is to evaluate the different expects of the change the ipod and mp3 players have caused in the social as well as personal life of people, and evaluating if it has more isolating nature or emancipating.

Michael Bull, aka Professor iPod or Dr. iPod, a professor in media and film at England’s University of Sussex clams the different aspects on how iPod will help in improving life of people. The blog comments from apples unofficial website also has helped catch the personal views of the iPod users and people concerned on the topic.

Isolating nature of people can’t be blamed solely on iPod while the use of iPod definitely helps in emancipating the environment. And with the control on the environment the living definitely becomes easier

Introduction:

With frequent use of Ipods and Mp3 and its increasing popularity it has caused in decreased involvement of youths in social activities. This has raised a question in the social life of people of future generations.

The term Isolation may refer to the act of being alone; separation. Isolation practices can include placement in a private room or with a select roommate. (more…)

Cyber Café among Youths and it’s consequences

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on January 16, 2009

( This article was contributed by Devyani Shiwakoti, Sangam Silpakar, Elipha Pradhananga )

What does cyber café mean?

Internet cafe or cyber cafe is a place where people can get connected to the Internet while eating or have a cup of coffee using publicly accessible computer. While the main activity in the cyber cafe is the Internet, such as email, newsgroup and web site surfing, other applications usually available are office suite to type document, spreadsheet, games, such as online games and other utilities such as printing service, scanning and digital photo service. Cyber centre or Internet centre is almost the same with cyber cafe or internet cafe. People can browse the Internet, playing games and typing document. The only different is cyber centre or internet centre do not sell food or beverage. They only concentrate in computers, not cafe. Other services usually available are  (more…)

Media and Power: How politicians use media

Posted in assignment, Media, Satirical and humorous by Shekhar on January 16, 2009

(This article was written by Bhrikuti Rai and Tshering Dolker Gurung)

Much of what Nepalese know about their political leaders, party politics or public policy comes from the media especially television, radio and newspapers- the primary information link between the Nepali population and the political sphere. The media try to explain the government’s goal, policies, helping to mobilize and reinforce public support necessary for effective political action. They also focus on controversial policies and expose corruption and hold politicians accountable to public opinion. In reporting on politics the media help select the issues that are to receive public attention and help shape the public agenda. (more…)

EXPLORING STUDY ABROAD :INTERNET AND THE ISSUE OF BRAIN DRAIN

Posted in assignment, Media by Shekhar on January 16, 2009

(This article was written by Amol Acharya and Prem Tshering Sherpa)

The more and more the technology has been taking all over the world, the more and more the people are longing for even more shortcuts. In this material world, pleasure comes from materialistic inventions. Where there are more inventions, there will be more money and where there will be more money, there will be obviously more people. So many changes has been brought in the technologies making our life a lot easier, but still people are wanting more; a typical human nature. In the developed countries, people are wishing for some even more machines that will comfort them. Developing countries are looking for money

making opportunities. This makes them think of going abroad or to the place where there are more opportunities waiting them. People going abroad to earn money, or study further and people seeking some more comforts and entertainments such as use of computers, zooming it further more, use of internets are increasing day by day. Internet is such a wonderful creation; (more…)

Media and Social Stratification

Posted in Media by Shekhar on January 16, 2009

Social stratification refers to the hierarchical arrangement of different social classes, castes and strata of people within the society. Nineteenth century philosopher Karl Marx’s division of society into Bourgeois and Labor may be the perfect example of social strata of his time but the globalization and the digitization of people’s life has created new kind of social strata at present context. This division exists even between the users of the internet technology and the non-users. ‘Digital Divide’ includes the imbalances in physical access to technology as well as the imbalances in resources and skills needed to effectively participate as a digital citizen.

Digital divide:

The fact that nearly 97 percent of the world’s population remain aloof from the  internet technology due to lack of money, access, or knowledge depicts the depth of huge gap between the users and nonusers of the media and cultural products.

Digital divide is the contemporary emblematic issue of the whole world. It exist among the users, among the non users and finally between the users and non-users. Active users of the media technology have instant access to the information and thus (more…)

Photo Essay: Labour Exploitation

Posted in Media, Photo Essays collection, Satirical and humorous by Shekhar on December 28, 2008
Finally i have finished ploughing the field.

Finally i have finished ploughing the field.

Pull the handle UP!

Pull the handle UP!

Don't look back! the Land lord is looking at you.

Land lord is very strict.

Landlord won't let us rest for a while

Landlord won't let us rest for a while

Just steer the handle and plough it throughly

Just steer the handle and plough it throughly

Bearing the Brunt of Democracy

Posted in Media, Political Affairs, Satirical and humorous by Shekhar on August 14, 2008

Democracy, the government of the people by the people and for the people, is it what our one of the greatest leader of the 19 the century had dictated. For me democracy is the rule of the majority party by the party leaders and for the partygoers. How long have we Nepali been bearing the brunt of democracy?
It’s more than 5 decade that we have been played in the game of hope and despair by the people we our self elect and pave their way to Singha Durbar. What we Get? The bold headlines of rescheduled all party meeting ending with no concrete conclusion, moody pic of our expert photogenic leaders on the front page of our leading national dailies (more…)