Goan blog stings a local daily

IN Media Practice | 12/09/2007
Increasingly blogs are keeping a sharp eye on the mainstream media. Here is a whopper from one of them, called Penpricks.

While stings are  very much in the news right now, here is a sting on the media, done by a blog. ?THE BIG ONE -- `CASH FOR EDITORIALS` can be found at http://penpricks.blogspot.com.

The blog focuses on the media, its self description is ?Discover the rotund flanks and the shaggy underbelly of the Goan media. And ofcourse, the rare honest rib.?

The blog  explains first why it did this sting: 

The purpose of this story is not to defame any particular individual or institution. Penpricks¿ motive is to expose a shameful practice in the media, which has been going on for a while, albeit behind closed doors. During the 2007 assembly elections, journalism in Goa hit a new low with the Herald, and the other Goan English daily The Navhind Times, consistently publishing political advertisements under the garb of news reports. Such stray cases of journalistic impropriety have occurred before. But, never has a newspaper so unabashedly systemised such unethical trends. This outrage in fact, became the cornerstone of this investigative story. And to trace the extent of journalistic degeneration in a newspaper, became our only motivation. But there was still one brook we had to wade through, before plunging into this torrent. How do we define the extent of this degradation?

After some deliberation, Penpricks arrived at this conclusion. (We are putting down our thought-process on paper, so that our readers know the logic behind this investigation) An editorial was and continues to be the soul of a newspaper. In the age of commercial conquest of news-space, the free-flowing column on the extreme left of the editorial page still continues to be the sanctum sanctorum of a newspaper. It is still that organ in a ravaged journalistic carcass that¿s shudders sometimes, to let folk know it¿s still alive. An editorial today, still lends a saddened reader, a shoulder, a harried reader, hope and at times cracks a whip at outrage. Would any newspaper mortgage/sell an editorial to an advertiser? Is the soul still sacred, or is it already on the advertisers shelf? This is what we found out?
Read the rest on the blog, documentation included. The Hoot hopes this will have other proponents of cash for editorial watching their backs.

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