ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Mapping the Power of Major Media Companies in India

There are 12 major producers of news content in India; eight business houses have significant presence in multiple sectors, and dominate specific market segments. The emerging oligopolistic nature of the Indian media sector is examined. Using ownership patterns as a proxy for control over the media and the information it disseminates, the control that prominent media companies exercise across various markets in which they operate is mapped. Detailed information has been collected across 11 internationally accepted content and carriage media industry sectors. Standard economic indices for each media sector have been used for arriving at the extent of concentration in the media industry.

The media, particularly the news media, is a powerful tool that disseminates information and often shapes the choices people make in exercising their democratic options. In a classical sense, the media is the watchdog of democracy, freedom, and independence. Its importance in an economy has been described as

an infrastructure industry comparable to electricity or transport, which through information transmission help[s] markets exist and function; through the conditioning of morals and empathy … reduce[s] transaction costs; through advertising revolutionise[s] the market structure of consumer goods industries; through educational materials … increase[s] human capital; through the formation of expectations they increased citizens’ aspirations; and, finally, they facilitated knowledge exchange and collective action that could kickstart institutional change. (Bakker 2014)

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Updated On : 23rd Jul, 2018
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