Make peace guys!
Be happy, have a more meaningful life.
If you still use facebook, you must have noticed that your news feed is filled up with people who keep on sharing news articles and blog posts about how good our government is doing and some of them must be sharing how bad the ruling party is. Every tradgedy, every success story, every small, every big incident, everything validates one of the two stand. They feel so strongly that they would want to kill someone who disapproves of their opinion.
People form such strong opinions based on just news. The irony is that they say media is biased.
I work in a media company, I can safely say that I understand how some of the media houses churn out stories. How the tone is set and how the stories are twisted. I mean it's really really funny to see people fighting over a piece of article I know how it was written. For example take this article.
An AAP supporter will share this article saying the EC is biased. BJP supporters would share as a victory flag.
First of all in the Indian context of media and reporting, what people call news is not a news in its true sense. It's an opinion. It's a perspective. Once upon a time I went for a job interview with one of the leading newspapers. The person who was taking the interview was the editor, and I asked him at the end if he thinks news should be just news or opinion. He said, nobody want to read news, people are looking for expert's opinion. He was true, but people don't know they are reading an opinion. Headlines are based on opinion, facts are somewhere inside. Most people just read the headline. Too bad.
When something happens, there has to be a news. And that news has to be put out really fast. That news piece should have a very attractive headline so that pople click on it. It should have some emotional connect with a segment of readers so that the article gets maximum number of shares. As a writer of that article your career, your reputation, your appraisal, all depends on how much impact did you make through that article. Impact not in terms of telling the truth but likes and shares. You have to add something which is more than just what happened. Like how the event is related to other hot events in recent present. Like how it might impact an upcoming event in near future. There is no time for anyone to think upon the bigger picture. Judiciary judgements are long, actually too long for a normal person to read and understand completely. Even if you go a bit wrong in the interpretation, no one has time to come back to you.
Oh, I forgot to mention about the smaller non traditional opinion blogs. There are many and they come in all size and form. I specifically call them opinion blogs because they don't do the reporting themselves. They read a news on one of the traditional news websites like TOI or Hindu etc, or watch news on TV, or see some video somewhere and they create a story out of it. If you think for a moment, why are they doing this? How are they getting money? They monetise the traffic they get on these stories. More shares, more likes, more traffic and hence more money. Well, these are still a bit innocent lot in my opinion. Afterall everyone wants to do a starup these days.
There are few, infact a large number of websites which are sponsored by or directly run by the political parties. It is so funny that you just read single article and tell which party does it belong to. Their sole purpose is to spread hatred against the opposition party. They publish very very emotional, patriotic articles and tell you that you are a traitor if you can't share this article. They hire people who join groups and circulate these articles and memes on whatsapp. They also do video editting of old videos to make their party look good and make their opponents look like murderers and bandits. They even hire poets and comedians to create really creative jokes and slogans to be circulated on Facebook and whatsapp. And every party I know of have an IT or social cell.
But you know what, the biggest game changer and most invisible of all is Facebook itself. The news feed that you see comes to you after a lot of filters. You see what your interest is like. You see posts from friends you interact more. You might have 2000 friends but only people you keep in touch(digitally) can be seen on your news feed. If you like and share articles which praises BJP, you will see mostly those kind of stuff. If you like Congress, you see just stories which say those were the good old days. Similarly for people with any other political inclination. That is why it feels so obvious for a BJP supporter to know about the landslide victory and congress supporters remain puzzled like "who the hell did vote for BJP". Similary "Who the hell did vote for APP in Delhi". Remember Trump?
Well, there is foreign media as well. Indians would believe whatever west has to say. They would believe just anything. I must tell you, they have no clue what so ever about what's going on in India. I would just leave it at that. Am not giving a reason here. Would appreciate if you don't accept or discard my point without thinking.
So, why I wrote this post:
Stop spreading hate. Every share matters.