Who We Are

The website has been created under the auspices of the Media Foundation, which is based in New Delhi. Its office is at Flat no. 2B, 1/23 Shantiniketan,  New Delhi 110021.

The Foundation is a society of like-minded individuals founded in 1979 to achieve the following objectives:
To promote, support, encourage and undertake social science, statistical and scientific research pertaining to the print, electronic, film and other media with a view to enhancing and strengthening their freedom and       independence; to uphold constitutional freedom of speech, expression and information; and to encourage freedom in society and enhance the quality of life through media and process of communication.

In pursuance of these it may do the following:

    a) Sponsor research projects, studies, publications, lectures, seminars and discussions, including those pertaining to the formulation, implementation, and evaluation of communications systems and  problems.

    b) Support research and development in design, graphics, type, keyboards and any of     the arts, artefacts and equipment that are or could be used by the media or enhance their utility in any way.

    c) Promote and support research and development in appropriate, adaptive and advanced technology with a view to making the media accessible to the masses atlow cost, especially in the rural areas.

    d) Promote such training courses and facilities for creating, fostering and encouraging the growth of skills, opportunities, and experience that enhance critical inquiry, and analysis, as well as creativity,   professionalism and excellence among practitioners of all branches of the media and communications generally.

    e) Publish or cause to be published research studies, documents, monographs, articles and reports in print, film, tape or any other medium.

    f) Offer grants, stipends, fellowships, or other assistance and make awards as may be appropriate.

    g) Maintain a library and documentation centre of books, pictures, film, tape and other media materials and collections, which it may acquire or obtain for reference or exhibition.

The Media Foundation gives the Chameli Devi Award to an outstanding woman journalist every year since 1981. It was instituted by the family of the late Chameli Devi Jain who was among those who responded actively to Mahatma Gandhi's call and participated in the Indian freedom struggle. An annual lecture or panel discussion  is also organised by the foundation every year on the occasion of the awards ceremony.

Since March 2001 the Foundation runs this media watch website, Thehoot.org. The Hoot is run from 1/23 Shantiniketan, New Delhi 110021.  

The Hoot editorial team:

Editor       Sevanti Ninan

Consulting Editor Geeta Seshu

Copy  Editor     Amrit Dhillon

Web Editor   Shilpi Goyal


Managing Committee and Members of The Media Foundation

 Chairperson :  Mrinal Pande, Former Editor of Hindustan, former Chairperson of Prasar Bharati, television personality, author

Honorary Secretary:  Sevanti Ninan,  media researcher, author

Treasurer: Mannika Chopra, Editor, Social Change

The current executive committee members are:
Rajiv Mehrotra, Managing Trustee, Public Service Broadcasting Trust, Secretary/ Trustee, The Foundation for Universal Responsibility of HH The Dalai Lama, broadcaster, film maker, author 

Chaitanya Kalbag, former editor the Hindustan Times, former editor Business Today

SY Quraishi Former Election Commissioner, Former Director General Doordarshan  

Vibodh Parthasarathy, associate professor, Centre for Media Governance, Jamia Milia Islamia.

Maja Daruwala, advisor and former executive director, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative. 

Shubha Singh, senior journalist and author.

Nupur Basu, film maker, former NDTV correspondent 

Sajan Venniyoor,  consultant Deusche Welle, former executive, Prasar Bharati 

Jyoti Malhotra, senior journalist 

Shuma Raha, senior journalist


The Foundation's members include:

Nitin Desai, Member, News Broadcasting Standards Authority, Former UN Under Secretary General
Kiran Karnik, former president, Nasscom
Aloke Thakore, teacher, columnist, media consultant
Geeta Seshu
Pamela Philipose, Director, Womens Feature Service
Rami Chhabra,Journalist and Author
Shailaja Bajpai, Consulting Editor, Indian Express, author and novelist
Ashok Chatterjee, Former directot National Institute of Design, Ahmedaba
H K Dua,  Former Chief Editor, The Tribune, ChandigarhRajmohan Gandhi, author, former parliamentarian, newspaper columnist.

Founding members of the Media Foundation include the late B G Verghese,  LC Jain,  Prabhash Joshi,  N S Jagannathan, and Ajit Bhattacharjea
The following books have been published under the auspices of The Media Foundation:
A Media Audit, 1984
India's Living Languages, The Critical Issues, by Sumi Krishna, Allied Publishers 1999.
Beyond Those Headlines, Insiders on the Indian Press, edited by M V Desai and Sevanti Ninan, Allied Publishers 1996
Making News, Women in Journalism, by Ammu Joseph, Konark Publlishers 1999.
Independence and the Indian Press, Heirs to a Great Tradition, N S Jagannathan, Konark Publishers 1999.
Making News, Breaking News, Her own Way, Editors Latika Padgaonkar and Shubha Singh, Tranquebar Press, 2012
The Hoot Reader, Media Practice in 21st century India,  edited by Sevanti Ninan and Subarno Chattarji, Oxford University Press, 2013

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The new term for self censorship is voluntary censorship, as proposed by companies like Netflix and Hotstar. ET reports that streaming video service Amazon Prime is opposing a move by its peers to adopt a voluntary censorship code in anticipation of the Indian government coming up with its own rules. Amazon is resisting because it fears that it may alienate paying subscribers.                   

Clearly, the run to the 2019 elections is on. A journalist received a call from someone saying they were from Aajtak channel and were conducting a survey, asking whom she was going to vote for in 2019. On being told that her vote was secret, the caller assumed she wasn't going to vote for 'Modiji'. The caller, a woman, also didn't identify herself. A month or two earlier the same journalist received a call, this time from a man, asking if she was going to vote for the BSP.                 

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