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Whatever it takes

This is about something that’s not in the news anymore; it’s not in the news because it does not make commercial sense to keep it in the news… It is about Indian Hockey’s inability to qualify for the upcoming Olympics… Or rather India’s ability to nurture what is popularly termed India’s National Game...

What worries me more than India’s loss of status in the international hockey arena is the apathy shown towards this sport in our country …. On the same day as the loss a major news channel in this country did a show where in a reporter got on the streets and went about asking the passersby to name 5 players in the current Indian hockey team and no surprises there almost none got it right; simultaneously they ran another show (like most other news channels did that day) asking for the removal of the person heading the Hockey Federation in the country… what bothers me again is this fault finding attitude of Indian Media and very specifically this channel in question… is only the Indian Hockey Federation and the average man on the street to blame for India failing in hockey? What is the Media role here???

When it is cricket, a tour match in Australia attracts so much attention, there programs running for not let than 30 minutes on each channel in the country (on the previous day, on the day(s) of the game and the next few days after the game is over) with so called experts from all across the country over phone, video link, satellite hook ups and what not … discussing threadbare the strategies, the pitches, what the players did in their spare time…where the players went shopping dining clubbing… the entire Olympic hockey qualifier that India took part in did not in opinion get that much footage on our news channels …. Yes the experts and others were called in after the tournament was over to help nail the culprits …

The channel in question here, CNN IBN (which happened to be one of my favorite news channels) did not even post my comments in their website - maybe I violated their code for comments but I never received any message on my email suggesting to that effect or maybe I made a mistake in the way I submitted the comment, but then I guess I got a response which said that my comment is being reviewed and will be available on the website in sometime - in retrospect its more likely because I was direct and to the point to the extent that I mentioned (to quote, not verbatim though) “for a channel that says “whatever it takes” I do not think that CNN IBN has done “whatever it takes” to promote hockey in the country.. while I also accept that it is no way CNN IBN’s responsibility to be promoting hockey … that is the responsibility of the Indian Hockey Federation, the Sports loving Indian Public, the Coaches and hockey players…”

The media’s responsibility is to exploit the commercial aspects of news or what they think is news or what they want the public to believe is news… keep sensationalizing issues as long as it makes business sense and then drop it without any botheration… ultimately it’s a business venture … and lets make it profitable by doing “whatever it takes”