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

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Upper-caste Domination in India’s Mainstream Media and Its Extension in Digital Media

Empirical data from the last two-and-a-half decades tells stories of upper-caste hegemony and lack of lower-caste representation in Indian media. After the advent of digital media, and especially after the proliferation of social media and content-sharing platforms, Dalit–Bahujan professionals and many amateur journalists started their own websites and video channels, and Dalit–Bahujan intellectuals have their footprints on social media platforms like YouTube, Twitter and Facebook. The rising phenomenon of Dalit–Bahujan media in the digital space and their success or failure in democratising Indian media is examined.

Problematic Ownership Patterns: The Evolution of the Television Distribution Networks in India

TV distribution is riddled with political ownership and the emergence of near-monopolies in the languages, states, and metros’ markets. There are instances of cross-media ownership among the national cable companies. Such information is either deeply embedded, or available in a non-transparent manner.

Mapping and Measuring Media Ownership and Control

A response to the paper “Mapping the Power of Major Media Companies in India” (EPW, 21 July 2018) by Anuradha Bhattacharjee and Anushi Agrawal highlights its inability to analytically explain the construct of “media market,” the consequent mischaracterisation of the extant scholarship on the Indian media industry, and engages with the gaps and inconsistencies in collating empirical details in the paper.

Ghoul: Challenging the Category of the ‘Nationalist Muslim’

The Netflix web series Ghoul provides an alternative to the stereotypical representation of the Muslim figure in Hindi cinema through its central protagonist and her dilemmas.

Selling the Fourth Estate: How Free is Indian Media?

A reading list examining the state of freedom of press in contemporary times through EPW’s archives.

How is Multilingual Freelance Journalism Transforming the Media Landscape in India?

Changes in the technological landscape and the political economy of news media have opened up new spaces for freelance journalism, particularly in multilingual spaces. Freelance journalists occupy a precarious position due to their place within neo-liberal logics, but at the same time, are less beholden to many of the political, social, and commercial pressures constraining reporting and editing in big media houses. Biographical sketches of three Chennai-based freelancers demonstrate different possibilities of engaging as a freelancer across languages.

Plotting Science

Contested Knowledge: Science, Media, and Democracy in Kerala by Shiju Sam Varughese, New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2017; pp xvi + 291, ₹ 995.

Sports for Cleaner Rivers

Rivers of developing world are subjected to tremendous amounts of water pollutants, mainly due to economic reasons such as the race to produce cheaper goods, paucity of funds, toothless environmental regulations, and deep-rooted corruption. Using a river-based sport, if a multi-nation rowing league is created, the media, corporate and government attention could create an economic system that will help give an impetus to river cleaning and maintenance, where nothing significant has been achieved in spite of institutions like the World Bank pouring in billions of dollars.

The Media, the University, and the Public Sphere

Looking at the uneven phenomenon that higher education in India is, this paper focuses on the ways in which the mainstream English-language media represents issues related to the university. In particular, it looks at press coverage of the “controversy” that surrounded the introduction of a four-year undergraduate programme in Delhi University, and the ways in which it constructed a notion of the university in the public sphere. It also considers some of the television coverage on the rollback of the programme, while pointing to the substantial issues that seem to have been overlooked by the med

Waiting To Be Heard

The Indian media experience represents a gallery of stark contradictions. Even as the government is making efforts to bridge the digital divide and take information technology to the masses, the colonial Indian Telegraph Act of 1885 continues to hold sway over the airwaves. While an apex court judgment of 1995 has endorsed that airwaves are public property, in practice, lines between public, private and community remain conveniently blurred. While private radio has made an entry into the Indian broadcast arena, community radio is yet to gain legitimacy from the law of the land.

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