(GIST OF YOJANA) Role of Media

(GIST OF YOJANA) Role of Media


Role of Media


  • Journalism is one of the most effective tools for the rapid transformation of society. When the publication of the first Hindi newspaper ‘Udant Martand’ began, its motto was ‘For the interest of Indians’. 
  • The value of journalism is distinctly imbibed in this phrase. Journalism aims to safeguard the interests of the common citizens. It was started in India with the goal of development and in its long journey, the media has proven that it is the fourth pillar of democracy in the true sense.

Evolution of the role of media:

  • The development of newspapers in India began in 1780 when James Augustus Hicky launched India’s first newspaper, ‘Bengal Gazette’, in English. 
  • Published in Kolkata, this newspaper was founded on Hicky’s tenacity, passion, and standing for the truth. Its motto was- ‘Open to all yet not influenced by anyone.’ 
  • Hicky was the first journalist of India who fought with the British government for the freedom of the press.
  • Media has played a significant role in awakening social consciousness since the time of the independence movement.
  • Be it any country in the world, the media has always been a vehicle of change and consciousness. 
  • It has a critical role in spreading awareness and creating a public opinion on any prevalent issue. The media, on one hand, acts as a communication link between the government and the public, while on the other hand, it also keeps a check on the functioning of the government. 
  • The media has a vital role in communicating the problems and issues of the people to the government. It is for this reason that even today people look up to the media with hope.

Evolution of social media platform:

  • The role of media has also changed over time. The communication revolution has contributed the most to this. However, this has also brought forth the challenge of factual representation before the media in the prevailing scenario of a conflict between credibility and popularity.
  • The world is connected through the internet and computer networks, allowing all places to stay interconnected. This connectivity has resulted in the birth of digital media, which is also known as new media.
  • Today, social media is determining several aspects of our lives. How the increasing popularity of social media grips the world can be gauged from the fact that now the number of people using social media in the world has exceeded the number of people who do not use it. 
  • According to a report, the number of social media users worldwide has increased to 51 per cent of the world’s population. It has also been concluded that the number of social media users worldwide has increased by over 10 per cent in the last years. During this period, social media connected 37 crore 6 lakh people. If its average is taken, then every day, 1 million users and 12 people are connected to social media every second. 

Key challenges:

  • According to a report called Data Reportal, a user spends an average of 2 hours and 22 minutes a day on social media. If the time spent by all users on social media is added up, then every day, the equivalent of one million years is spent on social media alone. The figures are enough to indicate the relevance of social media in the present times.
  • Today, India is emerging as the largest market for the internet and smartphones. According to an estimate of the American company Cisco, by 2021, the number of smartphone users in India is likely to double to about 83 million. Apart from this, by 2022, internet data consumption in India is expected to grow five times more than it is today. 
  • The number of Facebook users in India is about 300 million, while the number of WhatsApp users is about 200 million. The number of Twitter users has also increased to more than 30 million.
  • India is the biggest market for these media, and through them, fake news is garnering maximum publicity today. The citizens of developed countries faced this situation a little earlier. 
  • Hence, they are in a position to decide what would be the correct information for them to use. But in a developing country like India, where education and awareness levels differ, people vacillate between multiple news and information choices. 
  • Sometimes they cannot check the facts and accept wrong as right. A survey report by Microsoft in 2019 pointed out that internet users in India are the most vulnerable to fake news. This report, prepared after a survey conducted in 22 countries, said that 64 per cent of Indians are the victims of fake news. 
  • It is a matter of concern because, at the global level, this figure is 57 per cent. The most important thing about this report is that family or friends also play an essential role in spreading fake news.
  • The sustained spread of the information revolution in India and the advent of new technologies like social media is the reason why many sources of information have become available to people. Earlier, information reached the people only through an approved process. 
  • Limited people were managing them who followed the rules and the law. But technology changed everything. Today, everyone is a creator and publisher. Technology has given this opportunity to everyone. Therefore, the sources of information have become innumerable. 
  • Due to this, now everyone wants to put forward his point of view. Some of them are responsible, while for people many times more than them, this responsibility does not mean anything at all. 
  • It leaves the commoner in a dilemma as to what is right and what is wrong. The same information can be good for a particular set of people and bad for another.
  • Today, we live in an era of information boom, and words like ‘posttruth’ have been included in everyday conversation. When something is beyond the truth, when there is no difference between falsehood and truth, when the idea of right and wrong is not based on facts or knowledge but sentiments, it is called post-truth. 
  • In such a time, awareness and understanding will have to be created about ‘information.’ There is nothing new in fabricating and propagating issues for one’s interest. However, in the digital world, the way fake news on political, economic, and social issues has become widespread is a serious concern. The dissemination of information on a large scale is not limited to the elite class or conventional media. Because of these networks, it has become impossible to stop the flow of information. 
  • Public education is the prime objective of journalism which we are gradually neglecting. For public education, it is necessary that we also go through a self-learning process. It is also the responsibility of journalism to sustain society’s vision and intellectual consciousness in favour of the nation.

Way forward:

  • Today, when India is making rapid strides in its progress and development, all the countries of the world are looking at our country with new hope. A new beginning has been made in India’s economic, social, and cultural journey. India’s identity is changing and it is not only a cultural heir of an accomplished tradition, but also a rapidly developing nation. That’s why India is also evoking expectations. 
  • While expressing the diversity and plurality of this country, the media can elicit the threads of unity in it. The strength of our country is that we unite swiftly in times of crisis. But that feeling evaporates once the problem is over. We have to create a vision in the minds of people that they are together in every situation and can remain so in good times as well. It is the feeling of unity. 
  • It is the bonding that needs to be awakened. Intellectualism should become part of the common man’s thinking. The media can play this role in directing media persons accordingly.
    The function of media is to provide information to the people catering to them and enhancing their intellectual level. 
  • Democracy is realised and made meaningful through such participation. It is the responsibility of the media to inculcate in the readers and viewers a serious understanding of the concerns related to the public and the issues our country is facing.
  • Newspapers and magazines used to advocate the cause of independence fiercely. It is crucial that a yearning to do something for the country and a desire to take the country forward should be awakened amongst the countrymen. As was the spirit of the movement for Swaraj (self-rule), so should be the energy of the movement for Surajya (good rule).


  • For India to emerge as a force to reckon with globally, we have to attain higher global standards in many areas. 
  • It is the need of the hour that the way India has earned a place in the domain of science, technology, innovation, and sports in the world, similarly our media should also gain global reach and create a global identity to raise India’s voice in the world. Today, the press of India should accept this challenge and contribute to nation-building.



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Courtesy: Yojana