Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Oh dear, The Daily Star reeks of biasedness this morning....

According to Wikipedia,  Journalism ethics and standards comprise principles of ethics and of good practice as applicable to the specific challenges faced by journalists. Historically and currently, this subset of media ethics is widely known to journalists as their professional "code of ethics" or the "canons of journalism". 

While various existing codes have some differences, most share common elements including the principles of — truthfulness, accuracy, objectivity, impartiality, fairness and public accountability — as these apply to the acquisition of newsworthy information and its subsequent dissemination to the public.

Now look at this screenshot taken from the Daily Star today morning.

Four important points stand out,
1. In the latest news ticker, it says "HR Chief backs demand for blocking war crimes clemency". I am tired of addressing this, but any sane minded citizen following the news is bound to know that human rights is an issue that has become a farce in Bangladesh. Amendment of an Act in hope that it will influence that outcome of a trial is hardly an occasion to be proud of. Any 'HR boss' with a penchant for 'human rights' would question the move. But the Daily Star, in an apparently shameless move, has decided to cast it in a positive light.
2. "For a cause till his last breadth", on the left hand column is given a position of importance. The emphasis is barely concealed. As a reader you are bound to train a larger percentage of you attention span on to that article.
3. On the top right, the headline is "Hartal for war criminals fails", biased in its larger font portrayal. Your conscious is bound to override the fact that it is followed by "Say Shahbagh youths, wear black badges". Any uninformed reader is bound to assume that it is the general assumption.
4. That news is followed by "Business as usual during hartal", another biased view, given the polarity evident at the moment in the political scenario in Bangladesh. The news subheading whch follows also narrates a one sided approach, "3 killed in Jamaat's stray attacks; Shibir fires at AL office in Rajshahi, 2 bullet-hit". After negatively portraying an issue, any event narrated thereafter is simply viewed as being a chain related to that first negatively portrayed event. The tone is simple that of an unacceptable biased narration, not journalism

I sincerely dream of a day when journalism will again rise its head. I dream of a day when there will be no more mellow yellow journalism. At the same time, I doubt whether it will ever start will the Daily Star.  

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