Kill that man! He’s a Reporter!

Have you noticed how often journalists are reviled and mocked? While discussing any major issue of the day, at least one person is sure to say in a sanctimonious tone, ‘These journalists! They always blow things out of proportion!’. I’ve heard journalists being described as ‘the most useless elements of society’ and ‘officious and intrusive’. Apparently, these people want journalists to write cozy little articles and maintain a low profile. A reporter who does investigative journalism becomes everyone’s favourite whipping boy and is referred to as ‘Paparazzi’.

‘Paparazzi’ is one of the most annoying catchwords of our times. Any journalist who pokes around a bit, is labeled that. If you’re one of those people who find journalists annoying and about as useful as a pain in the neck, tell me one thing – how do you think you’ll know anything about the world, without journalists doing all the dirty work for you? Quite often, journalists risk their lives to get a story to the public. Take the current crisis in Myanmar. Do you have any idea how many journalists are trying to cover the events from within that country and how many are doing so at serious risk to their lives? Most top Burmese journalists are languishing behind bars because they had the guts to raise questions and seek answers. Even now, some are broadcasting events as they happen in Myanmar. They do so knowing full well what they stand to lose if they’re discovered.

Journalism is not called ‘The Fourth Estate’ for nothing. It is one of the ‘Pillars of Democracy’ and it is what keeps you informed of what your government is doing with your money, or why a certain film actor got off with a light prison sentence or why one group of people is massacring another group. Don’t you want to know these things? Knowledge is power isn’t it? What makes you think you can get it, if you don’t have reporters?

I’m well aware that there are indeed journalists who play dirty. Every profession has its dark side, and journalism is no different. But for a hundred unethical reporters, there are at least a few who are decent and professional. It’s unfair to call them ‘the paparazzi’ for simply trying to do their jobs – which is to inform you about your world.

Note: I have nothing against ‘cozy little articles’ and the people who write them. I quite enjoy them, as a matter of fact. But this post is about why investigative journalism is important, so naturally I haven’t talked about why the other kinds of reports and articles are important too.


8 thoughts on “Kill that man! He’s a Reporter!

  1. i totally agree with u on this…general society are willing to go along with a popular assumption without really using the grey matter…iam not too much with the celebrity chasers but then each one to their own since they too are filling a demand…but i hve always appreciated those grand folks who has called a spade a spade , sometimes at the cost of their freedom or life…its thru them we really know the truth..kudos…liked wht u wrote..

    and hey, welcome back…ur blog is like a dormant vulcano…cant really predict whn its going to blow 🙂

  2. Bravo!!!

    The thing is that people just take journalists for granted, and so they go to the point of criticising every point about them. It’s usually just to bash them up, but everybody’s a critic anyway.
    Splendid post!

  3. Thank you Tys and AJ! I’m happy that you agree with me and even happier that you read my blog, even though I’m so irregular with posts! I promise to be good from now on!

  4. You hit it on the head when you said, “Every profession has its dark side, and journalism is no different.”

    It’s just a lot easier for people to look at and criticize the hundred bad ones and comfortably forget the few good!

    Call this a random and vague parallel, but it’s a bit like people watching cricket. “These spinners I tell you!”

    Oh! Nicely ended. 😉

  5. I totally understand why you used that parallel, Doublespaced! We all enjoy being armchair critics. We never really bother to examine a problem from all angles before we deliver judgment on it!

  6. See, now that’s why I think you write better than me! ‘Armchair critics’. But no! I had to go drawing some d o u b l e s p a c e d parallels 🙂

    Darn! This ad world is changing me into something else. I can’t help branding my blog everywhere 😉

  7. So true mate so true!!! I’ve had similar thoughts earlier where I felt the press and the media were easy targets for anything and everything!!! Nice written!!!

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