Stories about electronic media

Mr Entrepreneur, just know, the future of Pakistan’s sports industry needs you

What’s happening to sports in Pakistan? We, a country of nearly 195 million people, are unable to produce even one athlete that can qualify for the Olympics. The nation’s performance in sports such as hockey, squash, boxing, and many others is declining and this fall in performances is detracting the public away from these sports. The entire nation meticulously follows cricket, and everyone wants to emulate our cricket stars. The media, particularly our electronic media, in Pakistan is completely biased towards cricket when promoting a sport. PTV was once a lone channel able to find time to air local sports. Having said that, the turn of the century came with a boom, and ...

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Are “leaked” video confessions becoming the new trend in politics?

First it was Saulat Mirza and then the rest of the videos started making their way towards electronic media. Confession after confession came, mainstream politicians were named, with Dr Asim Hussain’s being the latest one in the series. Each video provides enough fodder to sustain our TV talk shows for an entire week. This trend of declassifying confessional videos has taken electronic media by storm. Back in the day, we were confined to print media reports, putting our faith in anything the newspaper had to say. Now we have actual statements made by suspects in front of a camera only to be aired on all mainstream ...

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Through the eyes of Ashfaq

If you were to visit the departure floor of Jinnah International Airport between 10 am and five pm on a weekday, you would be awestruck by the melodious sounds created by a blind flute player. Ashfaq is a 42-year-old man who has been at the airport for the last 20 years. Born as a blind child, his childhood was pain ridden, troubled and filled with tales of ill-treatment. As soon as I heard about Ashfaq and his optimistic attitude towards life, various questions came to my mind, so I decided to meet him and find out more about him. When I finally got the chance ...

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When the media gets off the wrong side of the bed

The media takes a lot of flak across the world when it gets something wrong. In the fast paced world, with the events and happenings toppling over each other due to speed, mistakes do happen. These mistakes sometimes evoke guffaws and get stacked into the category of bloopers, but at other times, they evoke horror and outrage that is difficult to live down. When the media was restricted to print, it was easy to cover tracks by printing a corrigendum. Sometimes it was self-generated, at others due to protests lodged by the offended party or the mistake being pointed out ...

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The good old days of ‘Subuh Bakhair’ and today’s deteriorating morning shows

The history of morning shows in Pakistan dates back to January 1988, when the nation witnessed its first morning show, Subuh Bakhair, live on Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV). The show was hosted by the famed author and travel writer, Mustansar Hussain Tarar – the Chacha Jee of our era – for nearly seven years. He is considered as the pioneer of live morning transmissions in Pakistan. “Assalam-o-Alaikum saray Pakistan aur pyare Pakistan!” (Good morning to all of Pakistan and beloved Pakistan!) These words still echo in the hearts and minds of millions. This was Tarar’s trademark with which he used to open his show in his famous idiosyncratic style. His prime audience majorly consisted of children, with ...

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Indian media’s ‘lack’ of Kashmir and Pakistan’s geographical understanding

In the words of one very well-meaning Kashmiri journalist, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led New Delhi government and largely jingoist Indian electronic media have made anti-India resistance in restive Jammu and Kashmir much easier than before. What he meant was that now one only needs to wave a Pakistani flag for a brief moment in any part of Jammu and Kashmir to irritate the Indian government and irk its electronic media. It has become so easy to get them worked up. And once you infuriate them, the right-wing politicians issue strong-worded statements against “pro-Pakistan elements” within Kashmir and the electronic media follows ...

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What does a Conservative-led UK mean for British Muslims

Against all expert poll predictions, pre-poll analysis and commentaries from well-meaning pundits, the voters in the United Kingdom stunned one and all by electing the Conservatives (Tories) and rejecting the Labour. The Conservative Party led by charismatic David Cameron won a ‘shocking’ majority (331 out of 650 parliamentary seats) while the Labour Party which was led by Ed Miliband recorded its worst electoral defeat since 1987, forcing their leader to resign on moral grounds. May 7 voting has given a clear mandate to David Cameron, which raises genuine fears and questions about immigration and pro-poor policies. Immigration-friendly Labour Party has ...

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No need to run for your lives, there is no tsunami coming our way

Hate me if you will, and I hate the sound of the words myself, but I have to say it. All the hype about Karachi being wiped off the face off the earth as a result of an earthquake measuring seven to eight on the Richter scale causing a tsunami is a big lie. Why do I say this, when the media is all abuzz with reports of a Tsunami warning simulation carried out under United Nations aegis and participated in by the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD)? Because if a seven to eight strength earthquake radiates its waves to Karachi, from the Makran Trench, Karachi would have been ...

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Is my tax money funding your political advertisement?

Open any newspaper and you’ll find government advertisements – be it provincial or federal – flashing their on-going or upcoming projects. The best term I could come up with for this exercise of self-promotion is ‘political advertising’, meant for boosting a politician’s profile or a junior level politician behaving like a sycophant for his party boss. The phenomenon cuts through all political parties and ideologies, and affects all forms of media, print or electronic. Such adverts are often used to serve party politics rather than public policy. The incumbent government spends the most on such commercials, which explains why the government’s budget for advertising is ...

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Myth busting: The truth about Pakistan’s energy crisis

With the electronic media barely in its teens and social media barely out of pre-school, information is reaching us in all shapes: substantiated and unsubstantiated, actual and distorted. The media process needs the kind of maturity only the slow and gradual process of evolution can bring. So, in the absence of an effective information editing mechanism at the origination end, a need for filtering at the consumption end becomes imperative. Of course, it is unfair to expect everyone to be a domain expert on everything. A basic level of understanding on key issues helps distinguishing facts from fiction, hope from hype, ...

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